The Gustavian Weekly

Do yourself a favor this weekend by seeing Wreck-It Ralph

By Aaron Albani Copy Editor | February 15, 2013 | variety

Aaron?Wallenberg Auditorium will need additional seating this weekend to fit each and every Gustie running to see the best recent animated feature to hit the box office.

Wreck-It Ralph takes place in an arcade. More specifically, it takes place within all of the games populating the arcade. It’s got all your favorites: Dance Dance Revolution, Pacman and the like. When the lights go out at night in the arcade, the characters are free.

With no childish children to command their every movement, they’re able to run and jump as they please; as long as they’re back in their respective games by the time the arcade opens the next day, or the game will be out of order and unplugged.

Ralph’s game, “Fix-It Felix,” is comprised of Ralph systematically destroying a penthouse with various inhabitants, followed by Felix and his magic hammer systematically repairing everything Ralph has wrecked. By the end of the game, Ralph is thrown from the roof into a pile of mud while Felix is bestowed a medal for his heroism.

The opening sequence, as narrated by Ralph (John C. Riley, Step Brothers, Chicago), shows him at a “Bad-Anon” meeting, set up much like Alcoholics Anonymous. The bad guys feel bad for being so bad and so they console themselves with their motto, “I am bad and that’s not bad.” Ralph, on the other hand—tired of being excluded in the “Fix-It Felix” world, tired of living alone in the garbage while he watches Felix and his friends eat cake—wants a change.

Crashing the “Fix-It Felix” 30-year anniversary party, Ralph tries to make some friends and get himself a piece of cake. Shunned from the festivities, Ralph is determined to leave the game and not return until he has a medal of his own to prove his “goodness.” But he won’t find a medal in his own game—oh no: he’ll travel to far and distant digital worlds until he earns the medal he so craves.

And so Ralph’s adventure begins. He meets pals along the way (enter the voices of Sarah Silverman, School of Rock; Jack McBrayer, 30 Rock; Jane Lynch Role Models and Alan Tudyk, Dodgeball) and is discriminated against in every game he enters. He finally ends up in “Sugar Rush,” a racing game in some candy land, after crashing a space ship from “Hero’s Duty.”

In “Sugar Rush” he meets Vanellope, who steals his medal to pay her way into the next race. Thus spurs tension not only between Ralph and his thief, but also everyone else in “Sugar Rush” and the whole of the arcade galaxy.

I realize the happenings of Wreck-It Ralph’s plot are difficult to put into concise abbreviation while still doing it justice. What I can tell you about this particular cartoon film is that it is unexpectedly funny, delightfully whimsical and won’t disappoint the average moviegoer. I’ve heard from sources that they would watch it day after day due to its pleasing charismatic and cute characters.

If you’re not one for happy endings, cuteness, John C. Riley, laughter or arcades, then I would tell you to see it anyway because I’d wager Wreck-It Ralph will change your heinous preferences. I present four and a half stars out of five.

STAR 4.5