Monday, December 10, 2012

Wreck-It Ralph: Movie Review

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I went into the theater with moderate expectations of this movie. Having barely seen any commercials and a limited knowledge of the characters, I was for some reason, incredibly eager to see this film when it hit theaters. Being that 3D can give me a headache, my parents and I hit up the 2D movie and took our seats. Paperman was the short presented before the movie, you can find my review post on the A2M website. Anyway, as an fan of video games when I was younger, and still having an appreciation for them as I’ve gotten older, I was really blown away by this movie.

Storyline follows so if you don’t want to know what happens, continue to last paragraph!

The movie begins with Ralph, he lives in a dump (a pile of bricks) Niceland, in the video game “Fix-It Felix Jr.” Here Ralph is the main bad guy, wrecking the Nicelander’s apartments while Felix fixes them. Ralph is totally alone, and is seen as a monster to most of the Nicelanders. Ralph sees that all of the Nicelander’s are having a party in the apartments. Ralph wasn’t invited! He crashes the party and ends up ruining it. He is told that if he wants to live like them he must earn a medal and that there is no way he can because he is a bad guy. The only person who is kind to Ralph is Felix.

Sergeant Calhoun

Ralph makes it his mission to earn a medal and sets out to game jump to a game called “Hero’s Duty” where he impersonates a soldier on a mission to kill “Cy-bugs”. Here he meets the rough and tough Sergeant Calhoun. Ralph climbs the tower to the finish where he receives a medal. Ralph soon finds himself battling a hatched Cy-Bug as he lands in an emergency escape pod and is sent soaring into Sugar Rush, a go-kart game set in a candy land. Ralph meets Vanellope von Schweetz, a glitch character in the game. All she wants to do is race, but she’s totally alone, she even lives in a Diet Cola Mountain. She steals Ralph’s medal and enters herself into a race so that she may end up on the character roster for the next morning. King Candy (King of Sugar Rush) does not want any of this and is on a mission to capture both Ralph and Vanellope and put them in his fungeon (fun dungeon).

Meanwhile, Fix-It Felix Jr. is dubbed Out –Of-Order due to Ralph’s disappearance. Felix is told that Ralph has gone missing. Felix meets up with Sergeant Calhoun and they fly to Sugar Rush to find Ralph and the Cy-Bug that attacked him. The two end up falling into a pile of “Nesquick Sand” but with strategy and the giggles from some Laffy Taffy, they are both pulled to safety.

Fix-It Felix Jr.

Ralph eventually decides to help Vanellope, who says she can win his medal back. They create her own go-kart at the Kart Bakery. Ralph helps her practice on a course in Diet Cola Mountain. But King Candy appears to tell Ralph that the reason she cannot race is because if a glitch wins, the child who picks her would think something was wrong with the game. He says that they will be unplugged, and everyone in Sugar Rush would be homeless. But worst of all, Vanellope would not be able to leave because she is a glitch. King Candy gives Ralph his medal. Ralph destroys her car and Vanellope is devastated because he listened to King Candy. Ralph returns to Fix-it Felix Jr. where he realizes they will be unplugged and everyone has left. From the apartment he sees Vanellope is on the side of Sugar Rush and realizes he made a mistake.

While Felix and Calhoun are flying through Sugar Rush, Felix dotes on Calhoun and says she is a dynamite gal, something that Calhoun’s fiancé had said to her time after time. Her fiancé was killed by Cy-Bugs and so Calhoun was programmed with the most tragic backstory. After his comment, Calhoun kicks Felix out. Felix approaches King Candy’s castle but is sent to the fungeon where he is trapped. Ralph returns, helps Felix break out, and Felix fixes Vanellope’s car. Meanwhile Calhoun finds the Cy-Bugs have multiplied and will destroy the game. Ralph also finds out that King Candy wiped out the memory of all of Sugar Rush so nobody knows the truth. If a glitch crosses the finish line the game will reset. Ralph and Felix help Vanellope to the race where she beats all the other opponets and nearly reaches the finish before they see King Candy glitch into Turbo, an old video game character who destroyed both his and another racing game out of greed. Vanellope escapes Turbo, but a Cy-Bug eats Turbo (they turn into whatever they eat). Cy-bugs attack and destroy the finish line and everyone evacuates.

Vanellope Von Schweetz
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Calhoun tries to protect everyone as they make their way to the exit, but Vanellope can’t leave. Without a beacon, the Cy-Bugs will continue to attack. Ralph has an idea and goes to destroy the top of Diet Cola Mountain which is made up of Mentos. At that time Turbo/King Candy/Cy-Bug attacks Ralph. Eventually Ralph is able to destroy the top of the mountain and using her glitch Vanellope saves him from falling into the boiling and exploding cola mountain. The mountain erupts and the light lures and destroys the Cy-Bugs. Vanellope crosses the finish line and the game resets, and they all remember that Vanellope was the Queen of Sugar Rush. She decides to be the president and Felix, Calhoun, and Ralph return. Back in their normal lives Felix and Calhoun are married and Ralph is now treated with respect in Niceland.

Continue here for non-spoilers:

Overall, I was shocked by how much I loved this movie. There is only about 2-3 parts that may be scary for children under 5, however, any kid older than that should not have a problem. I did not see the ending coming at all, although it made perfect sense. I had an idea in my head and it went in a completely different direction which I loved. All of the characters were extremely lovable and the cross between video game pixelation and smooth CG animation was fabulous. I loved that each character moved in a different way and many of them moved in the old 8-bit movements while others like Ralph didn't hesitate in movements, it made it much more realistic. Something that was disappointing is that the movie only takes place in 3 different games and not as much game jumping occurred as I would have expected or hoped. While there are some notable and famous characters there were far less than I would have liked. The jokes in this movie were hilarious and never got old. Overall, I definitely recommend this movie to video game fans or not, anyone would love it! Wreck-It Ralph and Vanellope are currently greeting guests at the Animation building at Disney's Hollywood Studios!

Ralph, Vanellope, and Jane Lynch (voice of Calhoun)

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