This sequel to Wreck-It Ralph retrieves the video game characters Ralph and Vanellope to give us a lesson, and even two, on how to have a full life and good friends. And also the Disney princesses make a cameo.
I did not expect too much from “Ralph Breaks the Internet” ( Wifi Ralph , “Ralph breaks the Internet” ). I never got to see Wreck-It Ralph ( Ralph the Demolisher, Break Ralph! ), The first part of this story about a group of videogame characters from an arcade. And I probably would never have seen this sequel of my own volition, if I had not written this review.
And yet, I think my prejudice against this Disney animated film was completely unfounded and it would have been a shame (and a loss) not to have seen this positive story and so loaded with inclusive messages from 2018.
Following the trend of many, though not all , of the Disney films of recent months ( Black Panther , Incredibles 2 , Coco , Ant-Man and the Wasp , Avengers: Infinity Wasp ) “Ralph Breaks the Internet” has first of all a well-written script with all the ingredients to make this title an entertaining story, fun and loaded with morals. And, no, in reality you do not have to have seen the previous one to follow this new adventure of the great and simple video game character Ralph (voice of John C. Reilly).
Although Ralph appears in the title of this film, his real protagonist is Vanellope (voice of Sarah Silverman), his best friend, driver of racing cars in the videogame Sugar Crush and addicted to adrenaline. The film starts at the Litwak’s Family Fun Center and Arcade where Ralph and Vanellope work. Everything is peaceful and both have settled into a routine in which they work in their respective videogames during the day and, when the arcade is closed, they spend their time drinking sarsaparilla and sneaking into racing and having fun in video games such as Tron .
But Vanellope is not entirely happy. Or satisfied. “Have you ever wanted something new and different to happen in your game?” He says one night to his best friend. “Ralph Breaks the Internet” presents the videogames of its protagonists as metaphors of life, and the work of the spectators, allowing adults to feel identified with the adventures and misadventures of the characters in this animated film.
The luck of Vanellope and Ralph will change when the physical wheel used by the players of the game Sugar Crush breaks and the digital characters have to resort to the Internet (in Latwik’s just released the WiFi connection) to try to find a new steering wheel for the game on eBay. Only thus, Vanellope will be able to recover his game / work / occupation.
In Wifi Ralph, the Internet is represented as a city full of luminous neons of the different pages that compose it. Snapchat, Amazon, IMDb, YouTube, Twitter, Google, Instagram or Pinterest are some of the companies in making a cameo in the movie. And the humans that surf the Internet are represented by square head avatars that we do not thank after doing a search on KnowsMore (a kind of simile of Google that knows everything and represented by a character with the appearance of a librarian and who confesses to have a capacity for self-filling of searches a bit aggressive).
The Internet Ralph breaks Internet is a far more benign than the actual network site. The film barely mentions problems such as the addiction and alienation of reality that may end up being imposed on Internet users. But that is not the moral of this story, which focuses more on the friendship between Ralph and Vanellope to show us how it should be, and not be, a healthy relationship between two friends.
“There is no law that says that best friends have to have the same dreams,” says Shank, a new character who has the voice of Gal Gadot ( Wonder Woman ) and will immediately connect with Vanellope. “Friendships change but good ones become stronger because of it,” Shank adds. And the film wants to insist on the fact that the best friends do not necessarily have to spend their whole lives together, not even living in the same place (or the same game) to keep in touch and always be able to count on one another.
But beyond its many vital lessons about not being afraid to follow our dreams and trying to find friends to be happy about our personal achievements, Wifi Ralph also contains a lot of sense of humor. My favorite sequence was undoubtedly that of Vanellope meeting the Disney princesses, a group formed by the protagonists of many of Disney’s animated films of the last decades from Ariel from The Little Mermaid to the Frozen sisters. The princesses are a little scared by the intruder Vanellope at the beginning and they put her to the test to see if the little one is also one of them. When she answers affirmatively to the question “Do people assume that all your problems have been solved when a big and strong guy appears?”, The girls welcome her as one of theirs. Beyond the joke, the film allows us to reexamine a long tradition of Disney princesses in a different light and much more feminist than we were accustomed to these characters.
The tradition that undoubtedly respects “Ralph Breaks the Internet” is that of Disney movies with sequences behind the titles of credit. In this title there are two, one of them at the end of everything. We’re going to give you a clue about it .
My question now is, should I also watch the movie “Wreck-It Ralph” ?