Disney’s latest animated film comes in the form of ‘Wreck it Ralph’. Executive producer John Lasseter brought us many Pixar films so it’s no wonder that Wreck it Ralph’s visuals rival those of Toy Story, which it has been heavily compared to since its US release.
Wreck it Ralph, a video game character voiced by John C. Reilly, is so dissatisfied with his ‘bad guy’ image in arcade game “Fix it Feliz Jr” that he decides to travel to other games to try and win a medal, believing that it will win the affections of the other game characters. It’s a very clever premise, with intertextual references to existing arcade games, and some cleverly invented new ideas.
Wreck it Ralph is an homage to retro video games and pop-culture, Fix it Felix Jr, the game within the film, is a clever blend of popular retro games which is sure to appeal to video game fans of all ages. It’s bright, cheerful and funny. It has heart, and at times too much of it, so there’s something for all audience members to enjoy.
There are lots of intertextual references to existing and well loved games, Ralph himself is the human equivalent to the gorilla in Donkey Kong, and there’s lots of similar references to other games. Like Toy Story, Wreck it Ralph is all about the fun and joys of imagination, and the idea of toys and games having a life of their own. Although that is becoming somewhat tiresome with now three Toy Story films, the use of video games alleviates the repetitiveness of the same old premise of toys coming to life when no one’s looking, and makes it more modern and exciting.
It is at times loud and garish, possibly a bit too over the top and could easily lose out on it’s adult audience because of this, but overall it’s warm, funny and different. I don’t know many adults who don’t love a good animated children’s film, and Wreck it Ralph ticks all the right boxes. It has the warm, slushy Disney charm mixed in with jokes that are winks and nudges for the adult audience, and John C.Reilly does a fantastic job at the voice over for Ralph.
With plenty of laugh out loud moments and lots of heart, Wreck it Ralph could be the next big thing and could possibly even surpass the success of Toy Story, so watch this space! It’s definitely worth a watch for all generations!