Sunday, December 2, 2018

Movie Review: Ralph Breaks the Internet

: 3 out of 5
Pros: Lots of laughs, moments with old friends
Cons: Doesn't live up to the original by a wide margin
The Bottom Line:
Return to Ralph's world
Has laughs; but it's not as fun
Wish it were better

Race to Save Vanellope's Game

Like many others, I loved Wreck-It Ralph.  I'd forgotten just how much until I rewatched it in October.  As soon as they announced the sequel, I was anxious to see it.  Sadly, Ralph Breaks the Internet had its moments, but ultimately is disappointed me.

The movie picks up six years after the first one.  Everyone we met from the first movie is still hanging out at the arcade.  As far as Ralph (voiced by John C. Reilly) is concerned, life is perfect.  He still spends his days being the villain of his game, but he gets to hang out at night with Vanellope (Sarah Silverman), enjoying the various activities in the nearby arcade games.  However, Vanellope is getting bored with her game, wishing for more out of life.

When Ralph tries to shake things up for her, it goes horribly wrong, with the result being the steering wheel from Sugar Rush breaking off the machine.  With no easy way to get parts, Ralph and Vanellope set out to find a replacement, using the recently installed Wifi to go to the internet.  But finding a replacement part is only half the challenge; they also have to pay for it.  Will they get the part before Sugar Rush is removed from the arcade?

I'm trying to put my finger on what exactly went wrong as far as this movie goes.  It still has plenty of humor.  I wasn't laughing quite as hard as some of the people I saw it in the theater with were, but I laughed plenty, especially when they stumbled into the "Oh My Disney" site.  So many laughs that this DisNerd loved there.  They were pretty creative with how they depicted various websites and how they showed people getting around the internet as well.  Some of the humor felt a bit forced to me, but that was a minor complaint.

Maybe part of it is because, while Ralph does break the internet, that actually isn't the focus of the movie.  So maybe I kept expecting the movie to be about something it wasn't.

I think part of my problem is with the theme.  (And I'm trying to be vague here.)  It's not that I disagree with the theme, it's anything remotely bad, or I feel like they preached at us.  In fact, I would say it is something people of all ages can relate to.  I did feel like it contradicts the theme of the first movie, however.

Those looking to spend more time with the friends we made in the first movie should know that we do get updates on the major characters, however as far as returning characters go, it is mostly just Ralph and Vanellope in the internet.  We meet some fun new characters who make up for the missing old friends.

The actors are all in top form.  Whether returning or new, they bring their characters to life perfectly and let me get lost in the story.  Likewise, the animation is great.  It's much more ambitious than the first one was, and they pull off the very different locations perfectly.

While Ralph Breaks the Internet wasn't the fun sequel I was hoping for, I could definitely see it growing on me when I watch it a second time.  And I definitely will watch it again.  If you enjoyed the first, you'll want to see this one.  Just know it is a perfect example of a sequel not being as good as the original.

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