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Geek, Cars, and Gadgets

Wreck-It Ralph, Kickin’ It Old-School

I’m not sure if it was me or my kids who were more excited for this movie. The moment I saw the first trailer, I knew I’d be there opening weekend and I had very high hopes. The trouble with high hopes is that they’re often hard to reach. I worried that all the good stuff was in the trailers and that the movie itself wouldn’t meet my expectations. Would Wreck-It Ralph deliver? (This post is spoiler-free!)

Before the movie even started we were treated to vintage-style commercials for the arcade that is home to Wreck-It Ralph. They made me feel like I was twelve again, especially the one offering two free quarters on your birthday. Not one, two, which meant you could play one of the really good games! Ah, the days when two free quarters were like finding gold.

Once the movie starts, we immediately meet Ralph. He turns out to be a bad guy gone, well, more bad. After 30 years of breaking stuff and sleeping in the dump, he just wants to have friends and join the party.

The problem is that no one wants him around because, like the name says, he wrecks stuff. This sets the stage for Ralph’s mission to earn a medal and become the toast of his little arcade game cabinet.

Ralph gets out of his own game and visits a Call of Duty-ish first person shooter as well as a Candyland-like racing game. You couldn’t find two games less alike and once you make those characters interact with each other it’s absolutely fantastic.

It wasn’t just me that loved the movie, either. My kids, my husband and the very full theater that laughed out loud more times than I can count, all left happy. It was simply good fun and more than a little like Toy Story for video games, only not as sentimental.

And for old-school gamers, the references to games gone by are worth the price of admission alone. You’ll see Pac-Man and Q*bert along with others that you’ll have to watch closely to catch before their cameos are done. It made me want to go to the arcade again.

There’s also a scene involving Oreos that lasts for just a few seconds and it is going to stay with me forever. I don’t want to spoil it for anyone, but let’s just say there’s another iconic movie out there who’s lines I know by heart, and will now be saying differently after seeing Wreck-It Ralph.

You know how two quarter games were always better than one quarter games? Wreck-It Ralph would easily be a four quarter game and it’d be totally worth the price.


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