Ralph Breaks the Internet is Gorgeous, Clever & Emotionally Nuanced (Review)

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I saw Ralph Breaks the Internet this week.  I loved the first movie and the trailer for this sequel looked pretty promising. I had high expectations. After all, I gave up Taron Egerton Fan Service in Robin Hood (it must have been there) for in place of this film, so it had better be good.  And it WAS. Weird how sequels don’t suck like they used to. Time was when you could safely ignore a sequel unless it was getting rave reviews but these days sequels seem to be all at least as good as their previous films.

Six years after the events of “Wreck-It Ralph,” Ralph and Vanellope, now friends, discover a wi-fi router in their arcade, leading them into a new adventure.

Ralph Breaks the Internet was smart.  In fact, it reminded me of Ready Player One.  There were just so many pop culture references — so many.  That’s a good thing, I like that kind of stuff.  But there was no way I got them all.  Holy cow, did Ralph Breaks the Internet ever take the piss out of Disney.  I mean I knew there was going to be some Princess jokes, I’d seen the trailer, but I had no idea just what I was in for. I laughed the whole time.  Yes, at times I was the only one laughing but I was joined by the rest of the audience pretty consistently. This film was funny.

It was also well written.  The pacing was textbook, which is why 1 hour and 54 minutes was not too long.  Some of the ways the Internet worked in this film were brilliant. Characters had their reasons for pursuing their goals – we knew what they wanted and why.  And these characters were allowed to be complex. Ralph Breaks the Internet had some unexpected emotional nuance. It’s always refreshing when something can be both watched by children AND adults.  What do you do when people have conflicting goals but still want to remain friends?

There wasn’t much I didn’t like about Ralph Breaks the Internet.  I’m not sure if that’s because I was distracted by how visually amazing it was.  There was even fan service (how you doin’, Zangief?). I might also have been distracted by the woman who had a crying baby in the row in front of me and just let the thing cry.  To me, this film was pretty air-tight. Sure, the resolution to the main plot was a little strange and convenient, but if you ask unanswerable questions, you’re going to have to take whatever answers you can find.

So is Ralph Breaks the Internet worth watching?  Yes, I loved it. The characters were so like-able.  There were even characters I liked that I didn’t expect to.  I’m going to have to watch it a second time, though. There were just so many visual gags that I definitely didn’t get them all.  I want to see what I missed.

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