Thursday, 15 November 2012

Wreck It Ralph - Film Review

Okay, so this is a nice surprise from the non Pixar arm of the House Of Mouse, a computer generated animated movie that is aimed at video game players and pretty much no one else. Luckily, there’s a hell of a lot of video gameers out there, old and young, and the good news is that Wreck It Ralph can be appreciated by all of them, whether you’re an old school die hard who remembers when Space Invaders first came out (me), or a member of the Mario kart and Halo brigade, wondering how anyone ever had fun before Hi-Def graphics.

The story revolves around, unsurprisingly, Wreck It Ralph, the bad guy in a 30 year old arcade game called Fix-It-Felix-Jr, sort of a mix of Rampage and Donkey Kong, and he’s a little fed up of being the villain, and even goes to a support group that is filled with iconic evil doers all bemoaning their fate. This leads to him going to other games in the arcade, because when it’s closed all the characters can mingle, although if they don’t get back to their own games come the morning there is a danger they will be turned off as faulty - the worst fate imaginable.

First off, there’s a real sense that this was made by people who have a genuine affection for all sorts of video games, with older characters moving more jerkily than the new, high resolution ones, with a special mention for poor Q*Bert, who is homeless after having his cabinet turned off. The original characters have been created perfectly, with real personalities showing through the generic facades. Vocally, everything works well, too, with Ralph brought nicely to life by John C Reilly, and the hero of his game, do gooder Fix It Felix Jr, a spot on performance from 30 Rock’s Jack McBrayer.

Wreck It Ralph will certainly confuse non gamers, although the story has a heart and humour that may still keep non gamer parents amused if bemused. Although some of the classic game references will go over kids heads, the bulk of the story revolves around more modern game ideas, with the retro touches there to amuse the old folks like me. Hopefully this won’t be tarnished with a rushed, rubbish actual game tie in, because Wreck It Ralph is a class IP all by itself. Funny, cute and original, this is another modern animated movie that hits all the right spots. Game on…



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