Sunday, 27 January 2013

Wreck-It Ralph Review

The gaming industry has over taken Hollywood in making money from people’s need for escapist entertainment. Hollywood’s continuing quest to win back some of those lost dollars has involved making endless video game adaptations that have mostly been depressingly unfulfilling affairs. However the success of the Resident Evil franchise is testament to the fact gamers will keep coming back for more if Hollywood targets them.

In Wreck-It Ralph though, gamers will be lured by not just the cameos of old favourites like Bowser, Sonic and Zangief but also by the wonderfully rendered newly created characters. Ralph inhabits the game world of Fix-It Felix Jr. where he is the villain to the titular hero. After 30 years of doing the same thankless job in the same arcade, he decides to game jump and find himself a medal and gain some respect from his fellow folk in the game world.

Using the Game Central Station to cross to new games, Ralph’s world is stunning and bursting with fun, invention and possibilities for endless exploring in sequels. It seems sad to complain that we see so little of the other games featured in the game station because had we seen more of them, they would not have received enough screen time to be given their proper dues.

As it is, we are treated to three games during the course of Ralph’s adventures. His home in the world of Fix-It Felix Junior is simplistic and lovingly retro, the window out into the arcade that is the gamers screen looming large over the simply designed game world. But when he heads to Hero’s Duty, a modern first person shooter featuring futuristic machines hunting hordes of giant bugs, he quickly gets more than he bargained for.

While Wreck-It Ralph is a glorious celebration of retro games, it ironically dazzles in its rendering of the modern game. When Ralph busts his way into Hero's Duty, there may well be a part of you hoping for a more adult version of the film with further Ralph adventures in which he gets lost in the big boy games of modern warfare and first person horror shooters. It is a thrilling set-piece as Ralph gets hopelessly out of his depth fighting alongside the other marines.

After he ends up in the candy land of a sugary racing game, the plot settles giving the characters time to develop and the voice cast plenty of chance to shine. It gets prettier, less exciting and much more suited for the young target audience after quite an adult opening.

John C.Reilly as Ralph, Jane Lynch as a butch marine from Hero’s Duty, Jack McBrayer as Felix and Sarah Silverman as a little girl Ralph becomes embroiled with all play their parts to perfection, bringing to life brilliantly conceived and performed characters. The script is strong, pushing all the right buttons and the characters are leaps and bounds above what most video games can conjure.

Despite its kiddie-friendliness the excellent plotting makes this quite the pulse pounding experience by the time of the thrilling climax. Wreck-It Ralph features a wonderful voice cast at the top of their game. Audiences are bound to be addicted, inserting more coins at the box office until they get a sequel.

Wreck-It Ralph is released in the UK on February 8th 2013 and you can watch the trailer below.

Recent reviews at I Love That Film:

This is the End Review 

Ruby Sparks Review

The Look of Love Review 

21 & Over Review

Iron Man 3 Review

Olympus Has Fallen Review

Spring Breakers Review

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