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Wreck-It Ralph (2012)

aka Wreck-It Ralph

Directed By: 
Written By:  Writer details not available
Details: 104 mins · English · PG (USA)

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From Everybody:

A Second-Rate Toy Story, But Heartwarming

When I first went into Wreck-It Ralph, I was very unsure of what to expect, and this resulted in me being unsure of how I felt afterwards, I awarding this film a luke-warm 5/10. But, recently I came across this again and wanted to give it a second chance. And, while this certainly isn't anything amazing, I can certainly appreciate it a lot more for the good things that there are.
Wreck-It Ralph is, in a way, Toy Story with video games; Ralph is the villain of a game very similar to the classic Donkey Kong, who gets none of the recognition or credit for his job, the other characters looking down on him simply for his role in the game. Being jealous of the flashy and popular Fix-It Felix, the Mario of the scenario, Ralph runs away in order to win a medal in another game and prove himself to be a hero so everyone will like him. While the comparison is loose, I can;t help but making it; perhaps it's just my own personal biases at work. However, this is definitely its own film, for both goo...(more)

When I first went into Wreck-It Ralph, I was very unsure of what to expect, and this resulted in me being unsure of how I felt afterwards, I awarding this film a luke-warm 5/10. But, recently I came across this again and wanted to give it a second chance. And, while this certainly isn't anything amazing, I can certainly appreciate it a lot more for the good things that there are.
Wreck-It Ralph is, in a way, Toy Story with video games; Ralph is the villain of a game very similar to the classic Donkey Kong, who gets none of the recognition or credit for his job, the other characters looking down on him simply for his role in the game. Being jealous of the flashy and popular Fix-It Felix, the Mario of the scenario, Ralph runs away in order to win a medal in another game and prove himself to be a hero so everyone will like him. While the comparison is loose, I can;t help but making it; perhaps it's just my own personal biases at work. However, this is definitely its own film, for both good and bad reasons.
One particular issue I had with the piece is that the first two thirds of the movie is kind of a chore to sit through, especially the second time through. There's a lot of exposition for how this world works and the limitations of the characters in order to create the conflicts at hand. The nods and references to classic video games certainly help, but they are pretty exclusive to the first portion of the film; viewers are hit with a slew of familiar faces (Bowser, Zangief, Sonic, and even some more obscure, older characters), only to have that all disappear when we're left to spend the rest of the movie in a single game.
That's another issue with the piece as a whole; with a medium that's so big, we only ever visit three games in depth, and, of those, only the third, a Mario Kart game coated in candy, gets a lot of time on the screen. And, to be honest, this place isn't all that interesting. Everything is candy-based, resulting in it feeling like a re-tread in some manners. There's the occasional creative locale, such as a kart-making factory, but, ultimately, the place isn't all that appealing.
Which is a shame, because this film has some amazing graphics. Everything here visually looks stunning; a lot of the style and look of video games, from 8-bit imagery to how certain characters move, are very well recreated, and makes the world feel like its own. And the character designs generally are pretty awesome.
The characters themselves, however, are a mixed bag, and were kind of a deal breaker for me originally. Why? Well, I really don;t care for either of our main characters. This alleviates a bit towards the end, when they wise up a bit, but, prior to that, they're really obnoxious, childish individuals that I don't want to root for. The side characters, on the other hand, are a lot of fun; Jane Lynch's character is a fantastic parody of the modern shooter stereotype, and Fix-It Felix, played by Jack McBrayer, is a lot of fun as well. But, by far my favorite is King Candy, who so happens to be played by Alan Tudyk of Firefly; he creates a really interesting and clever character to follow throughout the piece, helping to hold up the middle portion of the film nicely.
Well, despite some basic flaws I have with the plot. One of the main points of the movie is that Ralph is a villain, and thus should be treated like one, despite his personality. Yet, after thirty years of the game existing, none of these other characters from his game ever bothered to talk to him or get to know him? Also, once he runs away, no one ever considers that they treated Ralph poorly; rather, they start to blame him for when things go bad rather than seeing the faults in themselves. Even Felix can't seem to shake this selfish outlook up until the last third of the film, which is really frustrating and obnoxious. I think what I'm trying to say is that this world is filled with some hateful characters, but there's no real reasoning behind it, resulting in the film feeling more like an allegory for racism than anything else. Which feels like such an overused plot point. And, yes, while it's good to teach kids this moral to treat everyone well, for me, the plot itself didn't have enough to get me invested in the going-ons of the piece.
That is, until this end I've been talking about so much. Suddenly, the film gets really emotional and hits a lot of heartstrings, about when all of the exposition is done. Maybe all the explanations were getting in the way, and now that everything's been fleshed-out, the movie could start with the meat of the meal. I'm not entirely sure, to be honest, but the finale is big, exciting, emotionally charged, and quite engaging. The characters, in developing, become a lot more likable, and thus help the plot move a lot more smoothly. Also, there is an absolutely dynamite reveal that makes the ending a lot of fun to experience.
So, while the whole film isn't great, the ending is everything I could have asked for from it, leaving me in an awkward position. If you're a big Disney fan, you'll probably go see it anyway, as well as if you're a video game junkie like me. Otherwise, I'd say at least give it a shot; even an okay Disney movie is pretty good in film standards. (less)

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Impressive use of 3D in an animated movie! Cool movie too. I was a bit hesitant at first, but it grew on me until I ended up really enjoying it. I wavered between 3.5 and 4 stars, but settled on 3.5 because it was a bit slow to get started.

I don't blame Ralph for wanting a medal - the Nicelanders were really quite cruel to him in the beginning of the movie. I love how they move like in the game, and how spills turn out all pixilated :)

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Mature and Heart-Warming/Wrenching

I was expecting this to be a kids movie, but it's much more than that. For kids, it's probably just that, but when you're able to understand all the nuances, it's a really beautiful movie. One of my favorite movies. Albeit, it still doesn't dethrone The Perks of Being a Wallflower

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Cast:

Small Wreck-It Ralph (voice)
Small Sergeant Calhoun (voice)
Small Vanellope von Schweetz (voice)
Small Fix-It Felix (voice)
Small Turtle (voice)
Small General Hologram
Small King Candy
Small Wynnchel
Small Mary
Small Taffyta Muttonfudge
Small Markowski
Small Moppet
No_movie_poster Sonic the Hedgehog
No_movie_poster Roy
Small Additional Voices
Small Mr. Litwak

Crew:

Small John Lasseter Executive Producer
No_movie_poster Clark Spencer Producer
No_movie_poster William J. Caparella Editor
No_movie_poster Jamie Sparer Roberts Casting
No_movie_poster Rich Moore Director
No_movie_poster Monica Lago-Kaytis Producer
No_movie_poster Brent W. Hall Post Production Supervisor
No_movie_poster Mike Huang Animation Supervisor
No_movie_poster Phil Johnston Other
No_movie_poster Rich Moore Story Contributor
No_movie_poster Phil Johnston Story Contributor
No_movie_poster Jim Reardon Story Contributor
No_movie_poster Tim Mertens Editing

Plot:

When Litwak's Arcade closes at night, the various video game characters leave their normal in-game roles and are free to travel to other games. The characters within the game Fix-It Felix, Jr. celebrate its titular hero, but loathe the game's villain character, Wreck-It Ralph. At a support group for video game antagonists, Ralph reveals his desire to stop being a villain. Ostracized from his game's 30th anniversary celebration, Ralph believes he can be accepted by earning a medal, just as Felix does in their game. He learns he can find one in the first person rail shooter game Hero's Duty and enters the game, collecting the medal by climbing the game's central beacon between game sessions. In the process, he accidentally hatches a Cy-Bug, one of the game's enemies. The Cy-Bug clings to Ralph as he stumbles into an escape pod that launches him out of the game. Meanwhile, with Ralph missing, a girl reports to Litwak the arcade owner that Fix-It Felix, Jr. is malfunctioning. Since broken games get unplugged, leaving their characters homeless, Felix goes to find Ralph.

Ralph crash-lands in Sugar Rush, a kart-racing game. As he searches for his medal, he meets Vanellope von Schweetz, a glitchy character who takes the medal and uses it to buy entry into a race to determine the game's roster. The other racers, including the game's ruler King Candy, refuse to let Vanellope participate, claiming she is not really part of the game. Empathetic towards the friendless Vanellope, Ralph helps build her a kart and discovers that she is a natural racer. Meanwhile, Felix enters Hero's Duty and encounters Sergeant Calhoun, the game's no-nonsense leader, who warns that the escaped Cy-Bug will multiply and take over any game they enter. As the pair search for Ralph and the Cy-Bug in Sugar Rush, they separate when Felix, enamored with Calhoun, inadvertently reminds her of her late fiancé. Calhoun finds hundreds of Cy-Bug eggs underground, and Felix becomes imprisoned in King Candy's castle during his search for Ralph.

Desperate, King Candy hacks the game's code to retrieve Ralph's medal and offers it to Ralph, explaining that letting Vanellope race would be disastrous for both her and the game. Fearing for Vanellope's safety, Ralph wrecks her kart and returns to his own game, but finds that everyone has evacuated, expecting the game to be unplugged in the morning. Ralph then notices Vanellope's image on the Sugar Rush cabinet and realizes she is an intended part of the game, not a glitch. Ralph returns to Sugar Rush, rescues Felix and Vanellope, and has Felix fix the wrecked kart. As the race proceeds, the hatched Cy-Bugs attack and Felix, Calhoun, and Ralph battle them. When Vanellope catches up to King Candy, her glitching reveals that he is actually Turbo, a character from an older racing game who sabotaged a newer game out of jealousy, causing both to be unplugged. Vanellope escapes from Turbo, who is consumed by a Cy-Bug.

The group flees the doomed game, but Vanellope cannot pass through the exit because she is a glitch. Calhoun says the game cannot be saved without a beacon to attract and kill the Cy-Bugs. Ralph heads to Diet Cola Mountain, an unfinished game track, where he plans on collapsing its Mentos stalactites into the cola at the bottom to cause a blinding eruption to use as a beacon. Before he can finish, Turbo, merged with the Cy-Bug that had consumed him, carries him away. Ralph breaks free and dives toward the mountain, intending to sacrifice himself to start the eruption on impact. Vanellope in turn uses her glitching abilities to save Ralph, and the eruption draws Turbo and the Cy-Bugs to their destruction. Vanellope crosses the finish line, restoring her memory and status as Princess Vanellope, the game's ruler and lead character, while keeping her advantageous glitching ability. Felix and Ralph return to their game in time for Litwak to see that it still works, sparing it from being unplugged. Calhoun and Felix marry, and the characters of Fix-It Felix, Jr. gain a new respect for Ralph.

Release Dates:

Theatrical : 2012-12-06 : Slovakia

Theatrical : 2013-02-08 : Sweden

Theatrical : 2012-12-20 : Singapore

Theatrical : 2012-12-06 : Germany

Theatrical : 2012-11-02 : United States of America

Theatrical : 2012-11-29 : Malaysia

Theatrical : 2013-02-08 : Norway

Theatrical : 2013-01-04 : Brazil

Theatrical : 2012-11-02 : Canada

Theatrical : 2012-11-29 : Czech Republic

Theatrical : 2012-11-30 : Colombia

Theatrical : 2012-11-09 : Iceland

Theatrical : 2012-12-12 : Belgium

Theatrical : 2012-12-20 : Italy

Theatrical : 2013-01-03 : Argentina

Theatrical : 2012-12-12 : Netherlands

Theatrical : 2012-12-26 : New Zealand

Theatrical : 2012-11-01 : Hungary

Theatrical : 2012-12-20 : Hong Kong

Theatrical : 2012-12-05 : France

Theatrical : 2012-11-02 : Romania

Theatrical : 2012-11-01 : Russia

Theatrical : 2013-02-07 : Denmark

Theatrical : 2013-02-08 : United Kingdom

Theatrical : 2012-12-27 : Greece

Theatrical : 2012-12-26 : Australia

Theatrical : 2013-02-15 : Turkey

Theatrical : 2012-11-08 : Portugal

Theatrical : 2012-12-27 : Chile

Theatrical : 2013-03-23 : Japan

Theatrical : 2012-11-09 : Vietnam

Theatrical : 2012-11-06 : China

Theatrical : 2013-02-15 : Finland

Theatrical : 2012-11-02 : Mexico

Theatrical : 2012-11-02 : Bulgaria

Theatrical : 2012-12-24 : Cambodia

Theatrical : 2013-01-25 : Estonia

Theatrical : 2012-11-09 : India

Theatrical : 2012-11-01 : Kuwait

Theatrical : 2013-01-11 : Lithuania

Theatrical : 2012-11-01 : Philippines

Theatrical : 2013-01-18 : Poland

Theatrical : 2012-12-25 : Spain

Theatrical : 2012-11-29 : Israel

Theatrical : 2012-12-20 : Republic of Macedonia

Theatrical : 2012-12-25 : Greece

Theatrical : 2012-12-25 : Peru

Theatrical : 2012-12-28 : Taiwan

Theatrical : 2013-01-01 : Colombia

Theatrical : 2013-01-04 : Paraguay

Theatrical : 2013-01-10 : Croatia

Theatrical : 2013-02-08 : Ireland

DVD : 2013-03-05 : United States of America

2012-11-18 : Argentina

2012-12-27 : Thailand