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You Don’t Have to Play Video Games to Love ‘Wreck-It Ralph’ [REVIEW]

Wreck-It Palph Poster
Walt Disney Animation Studios

I love video games, and I’m not ashamed to admit it.  From the good ol’ 8-bit classics like Super Mario Bros, all the way up to the new high-definition behemoths like Mass Effect, I love ‘em all.  So when I saw a movie was coming out about video game characters, I was more than a little excited; I was giddy.

In a wonderful display of proof that my fiance is the perfect woman for me, it was she who suggested we see Wreck-It Ralph over the weekend.  Of course, I agreed, and we set off to see it.  The previews had set our expectations pretty high for this movie…and we weren’t disappointed.

Wreck-It Ralph is incredibly good.

It features a great cast, including the voices of John C. Reilly, Jane LynchAlan Tudyk, Sarah Silverman, and Jack McBrayer.  They all play off of each other really well, especially Reilly and Silverman.

The plot and writing also make for an enjoyable experience.  My fiance and I both found ourselves going from laughing hysterically one minute, to teary sentimentality the next.  The story progresses well overall, though a select few moments do feel a little awkward or oddly-timed.

Many of the video games featured in the movie were actual, real games, which I appreciated.  Now, in my review of Paranormal Activity 4, I was pretty critical of product placement.  My colleague and fellow DJ Paul Wozniak was quick to pick my review apart, saying (among other things) that product placement makes the movie feel more real.  After all, it’s more realistic for movie characters to be playing an Xbox 360 than a “Generic Gamestation Box 2000.”

I feel like Wreck-It Ralph used product placement in that appropriate way Paul was referring to.  After all, it’s a movie that takes place entirely within an arcade and its games.  The presence of games that people recognize makes it feel familiar, and just generally just more legitimate.

I’m still not convinced Paranormal Activity 4 needed all those Microsoft and Apple products, though.  Maybe if the whole movie was about a haunted laptop, then maybe I could justify it.  But it wasn’t.  So Paul, I guess we’ll just have to agree and disagree on that one.

(To be fair, there was one arcade-goer in Wreck-It Ralph walking around with a Subway cup.  That was one product that the movie didn’t need.  Never let it be said that I’m a hypocrite about these things!  But I digress…)

Bottom line: This movie is good.  Really good.  The whole family will find something to latch onto in Wreck-It Ralph.  In a world full of mediocre movies, this one is definitely worth the price of admission.

Final rating: 4 out of 5

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