Movie Review Monday: Ralph Breaks the Internet
Disney’s Ralph Breaks the Internet hit theaters over Thanksgiving with the second-highest opening for the holiday time frame. As the sequel to the 2012 film, Wreck-It-Ralph, it follows the characters of Ralph and Vanellope as they venture into the internet to find a part to fix Vanellope’s game. The film was directed by Rich Moore and Phil Johnston with Johnston also writing the screenplay alongside Pamela Ribon. John C. Reilly returns to voice the character of Wreck-It Ralph, and Sarah Silverman also returns to voice the character of Vanellope von Schweetz. Jane Lynch and Jack McBrayer also return to voice their characters from the first film, and the film introduces some new characters voiced by Gal Gadot, Taraji P. Henson, Bill Hader, and Alan Tudyk.
The movie begins six years after the events of Wreck-It-Ralph with Vanellope and Ralph still best friends. Every day after “going to work” they hang out at the different places within Litwak’s Family Fun Center and Arcade. One night Vanellope begins to voice frustration over the predictability of her game, which leads Ralph to create a bonus track for her within Sugar Rush. However, when Vanellope fights against the player on the new track, the wheel for the game is damaged. Mr. Litwak ends up breaking the wheel in an attempt to fix it, and he soon unplugs the game when the wheel is too expensive to replace. This sets Ralph and Vanellope on a colorful and unforgettable journey through the internet to retrieve the new wheel themselves.
As someone who loved the first film in this franchise, I was just as equally pleased with this sequel. The fun video game worlds that were introduced in the first film are expanded upon in the vast world of the internet. This setting makes for one exciting, colorful adventure and gives the story room to point out the positive and negative aspects of the world wide web. The movie also manages to capture the same humor as the first while simultaneously taking it a step further. This film is so self-aware of all of the Disney franchises, and it has no problem picking at each of them. The parts of the story that include the Disney princesses are some of the funniest parts of the movie, and I was extremely pleased with the way these characters were utilized in the story.
While there is a lot of fun to be had with this movie, it also has a great deal of heart in addition to the humor. Underneath this exciting adventure to attain this piece of equipment is essentially a story about friendship. Through this journey, the movie surprisingly tackles the topic of friendship and the ways that relationships can be healthy and unhealthy. I found the undercurrent of that lesson and the way that friendships change and evolve to be executed well, and if I’m honest, it even left me a little emotional in light of how many friends I have seen move away or pursue different paths through the years. These lessons were made all the better through the new characters that were introduced in this film. Gal Gadot’s Shank was an excellent yet super cool mentor and support throughout the story, and characters like Taraji P. Henson’s Yesss and Alan Tudyk’s KnowsMore provide advice and humor throughout the film.
Overall, I would say that Ralph Breaks the Internet is one of the better sequels I have seen in recent years. Of course it’s not perfect, but it does push both Ralph and Vanellope into new territory while offering some different themes and lots of laughs. It adds some exciting new characters into the fold and takes the original adventure up a notch by incorporating the positive and negative aspects of the internet. In my opinion, Disney has once again made a film that adults and parents are able to enjoy as much as kids. So, I would suggest that you and your entire family enjoy watching Ralph Breaks the Internet sometime soon in theaters.
Mollie is a film enthusiast, aspiring writer/screenwriter, and a lover of all things Harry Potter, Star Wars, and Doctor Who. She is the co-founder of The Digital Shore (@thedigitalshore) and Above The Line (@atl_movies). You can follow her many adventures through Twitter and Instagram at @mcbeach.