With a name like Wreck It Ralph, you might assume it’s a movie for boys, and it is. Ralph is big and smelly and more than a little destructive, so rough little boys love it. But the other main character is a super funky chick who races against a bunch of girly girls in a land made of candy, so girly girls love it. The toughest soldier character is also a girl, so bad ass girls love it, and one of the bitchy racers is a gay boy, so girly boys love it. There’s a whole Call of Duty sideline going on so bad ass boys love it, and the nice guy who fixes everything ends up with the hot babe in the end, so nice guys love it. Nerds love it because it teaches the very basics of rudimentary code writing and dads love it because it features all the old video games they played when they were little boys. And moms love it because everyone else loves it.
2. It encourages kids to forgive in the end.
The bitchy little girl bullies are truly shitty to our heroine Vanellope Von Schweet, but in the end she forgives them instead of having them executed. Personally, I would have had them executed, but I guess Vanellope is a better person than I am. I can live with that.
3. It has some truly choice dialogue.
I love Calhoun’s line, “Doomsday and Armageddon just had a baby and IT IS UGLY”, but my personal favourite has to been when Ralph is just about to lay into King Candy, so King Candy puts on a pair of glasses and begs, “You wouldn’t hit a guy with glasses, would you?” to which Ralph pulls off the glasses and whacks King Candy with them. King Candy says, “You hit a guy – WITH glasses. Well played.” That shit is funny.
4. Most of the music doesn’t make me want to kill myself.
Ok, the boppy little Sugar Rush song pushes the boundaries of my sanity to its outer limits, but otherwise, I can live with the music without clawing my eyes out.
5. It teaches that it’s ok if you’re not perfect.
Ralph tries to embody this theme – despite his freakishly big hands and bad hair, he eventually learns to embrace his whole “I’m bad and that’s good” Bad Guy Support Group motto. But it’s Vanellope who really drives* the point home. (*See, she’s a race car driver so she drives the point home – get it? get it? That was funny, I promise.) Apparently the filmmakers created the character of Vanellope specifically for Sarah Silverman, the actress who does her voice, who recently published a book called Bedwetter about how she was able to take advantage of her greatest flaw. So basically, whatever your issue is, this movie teaches that it’s just a glitch and you can make that glitch your super power if you know how to work it and just be who you are. Which I think is nice, considering how many glitches I have.
6. It teaches that kids can redeem us.
Ralph’s final line is, “If that little kid likes me, how bad can I be?” In true life, the answer is “pretty bad” because kids have the amazing ability to forgive all kinds of incredibly messed up wrongs that have been done to them. Thankfully, my kids have this power too, so really, if I never become a successful writer or display any sort of talent for anything beyond laundry and keeping the towels straight on the bar, well, as long as my kids turn out ok, that’ll be good enough for me.