Disney Animation has another hit on their hands with Wreck-It-Ralph, a feel good story set in the world of video games. John C. Reilly stars as Ralph, a video game villain who is tired of being the bad guy of Fix-It-Felix Jr. Jack McBrayer, Sarah Silverman, Jane Lynch and Alan Tudyk star in this hilarious tribute to classic video games that will move audiences young and old. Watch the trailer and read my review after the jump.
There are so many things to like about this movie. It has the trademark Disney charm, with colourful characters, elaborate sets and a heartfelt story that will satisfy audiences of all ages. This is not a Pixar movie, but it feels like one. The characters are reminiscent of classic Pixar heros like Sulley, Woody and Walle among others. And like those movies, it is clear Disney has a huge franchise on its hands; another classic movie to add to its large library.
But what makes this great? Everything. The story is amazingly funny, especially if you like video games (like I do). The director, Rich Moore, and his team have included countless references to games, but not enough that it’s over powering. Sonic appears, along with Bowser, multiple Street Fighters, Pac-Man and many others. And they have created a world that has the potential to be just as big as Star Wars (Disney again) with some many opportunities for stories surrounding the Game Central Station, the hub where characters can move between games. This is where most of the references came, and I cannot wait for it to be explored in sequels (of course there will be sequels).
Not only is the set-up well done, the movie packs some real emotion. The audience will feel for the characters. There is a particularly touching moment between Ralph and Vanellope (Silverman) that should touch even the coldest of hearts. Even though they are characters in games, they have personalities, emotion and depth that other animated films can only dream of. That is what separates good movies from great ones.
The cast is great too. John C. Reilly is great as Ralph, you can tell he really relates with the character. Silverman is funny and cute as little Vanellope, while McBrayer as Felix and Lynch as Commander Calhoun provide great support. It may not seem important for an animated film to have a great cast, but their voices and emotions do contribute greatly to the film. That is another Pixar trait that transfers into this film; getting strong actors to do great work does help make an animated movie better.
All in all, this is a movie you won’t want to miss. It is so much more than a kids movie and proof that animation movies can still tell great stories. The acting is great, the animation is amazing, and Disney has the potential for another great franchise with this movie.
One last note. The animated short The Paperman before the movie was also really great. It captures all the emotions that comes with the pursuit of love in a quick black and white, silent film. That is hard to do in an age of loud, bright animation.