An old-school video game villain named Wreck-It Ralph (voiced by John C. Reilly) lumbers around smashing buildings that the game’s hero Fix-It Felix (Jack McBrayer) repairs for points and acclaim. But, one day, Ralph desires to have a life beyond where he stays during off-hours — the muddy trash heap right across from Felix’s skyscraper filled with friends and family — and he goes off the grid to earn a gold medal.
His journey includes stops in a Medal of Honor-styled shooter game with a gung-ho female protagonist (Jane Lynch) and a Candy Land racer adventure where he teams up with Vanellope von Schweetz (Sarah Silverman), a glitch outcast eager to earn a place for herself despite the obstacles in her way. Ralph feels like a not-so distant cousin to Shrek, but the difference here is that his road to heroic redemption plays out in video game heaven, a true stylistic mash-up that will appeal to the humor and visual fancy of all comers, while not forgoing the emotional ties that bind us. Now in theaters. (PG) Grade: A