There’s been a rash of recent movies fired up with imaginative risk. And the 3D computer-animated Wreck-It Ralph is one of them. Big props to director Rich Moore, making the switch to features after knocking it out of the park on The Simpsons and Futurama. Moore brings a video junkie’s passion to the movie game, and it’s hilariously infectious.
The plot pivots on a crisis of conscience for Wreck-It Ralph (voiced by John C. Reilly), an arcade-video-game villain for 30 years. Ralph has been making life hell for the good-guy protagonist of Fix It Felix Jr. (Jack McBrayer). Now, big Ralph wants to turn nice guy. So he starts jumping into other video games, trying to play hero. It’s not an easy fit.
He wins over tough Sgt. Calhoun, spoken with that distinctive Jane Lynch growl, by turning the tough-talking DI into a woman in love. It’s a rougher road to win over little Vanellope von Schweetz, who works a game about desserts. She looks like a sweetie, but Sarah Silverman puts a tang in her voice, telling Ralph, “Your breath is so bad it makes my ears numb.” Moore springs lots of surprises, including cameos from vid legends. Plus, you’ll get all the jokes that go over kids’ heads.