Discussion in 'DPF Game Room' started by MerlinEmrys, Dec 15, 2017.
Is it just me, or does the Backson kind of look like Sulley?! Kitty!!
Wreck-It Ralph (2012) and Frozen (2013)
Monday/Tuesday is our "wrap-up" discussion on Tangled and Winnie the Pooh. So you're welcome to respond to other analyses throughout the day.
However, you may not post any more full analyses for Tangled and Winnie the Pooh to count for completion toward the 52 Challenge. No late homework. ;P
And with one last change to the schedule, we will double up this week on WiR and Frozen (through the 15th) and then BH6 and Zootopia the following. We are in the final stretch now.
(and maybe now that grades have been turned in, I can actually get back to doing this! XD)
OK, I just gave two finals yesterday and really need to be grading these, but I decided to do this analysis first. As such, this might be short—although I’m not sure that’s possible from me.
1. and 8. My overall impression of the movie… Several things:
I remember liking this movie, but thinking is was just okay. In watching it again, I did find that I “bought in” to the film easily and was very engaged and entertained. The movie wasn’t slow or plodding and I never really felt myself looking at the clock while watching it. I also like how well written the plot was, how they pretty effectively linked three different video games, and how well defined the individual characters were. They also worked in different video game “feels” (“Fix-It Felix Jr. = 80’s Donkey Kong, “Sugar Rush” felt very 90’s Japanese cutesy style, “Hero’s Duty” = 00’s Call of Duty). This movie also plays homage to Disney’s “Tron”, another movie based on the off-duty lives of video game characters.
OK, as a science teacher, I just have to give a huge shout-out to the “Diet Cola and Mentos” fountain.
King Candy uses Ralph’s fears over Vanellope’s safety to get him to act against her. Total villain move (similar to how Mother Gothel manipulates Rapunzel and how Scar shamed Simba into escaping the pride after “causing” his father’s death). While Ralph doesn’t want to do it, and you can see the conflict in him when he decides to destroy Vanellope’s car, Ralph learns a hard “hero” lesson—sometimes you have to do things you don’t want because they seem like the right thing to do. That’s part of being an adult, and part of being a “hero”.
I also liked that Ralph was willing to sacrifice himself to save Vanellope, and accepts the final cost of his decision. It really made me like Ralph as a good guy, and even a “good-guy”. I don’t even mind that Vanellope saves him from his noble deed, and it doesn’t feel like it cheapened the sacrifice because Ralph had no idea she was going to save him.
2. The character I chose to analyze is Fix-it Felix Jr. From previous memory, I thought that Felix was an all-around good guy, but he actually just started as a “good-guy”. By that, I mean that Felix’s view of Ralph (and therefore himself) is that Ralph is a “bad-guy” (hence, he is the “good-guy”), and that Ralph must be as fulfilled in his role as Felix is. Felix shows no compassion or comprehension for Ralph’s loneliness when he shows up at the 30-year anniversary of the game, and awkward silence ensues. While the apartment dwellers (AD) are more comfortable showing open disdain and contempt for Ralph at the party, Felix is a bit different. I remembered (incorrectly) that Felix was being a true friend to Ralph to the AD, but I see in this watching that Felix is a “people pleaser”—he was trying to make everyone at the party happy during an awkward situation but he wasn’t really a friend to Ralph. Once Ralph runs away, Felix goes after him to “Hero’s Duty” and then “Sugar Rush”, not to help his friend but because (as he tells Calhoun), “It is my job to fix what Ralph breaks.” And, later in King Candy’s fungeon, Felix goes off on Ralph because Ralph messed everything up (because he’s a “bad-guy”) and this made Felix have to clean things up and generally inconvenience Felix. I sort of get that by the end of the movie, Felix’s ideas about “good-guys” and “bad-guys” might have evolved a bit—he became friends with Ralph, and married Calhoun—but I don’t really know if we saw this change or it just happened. I also think that Felix probably never ventured out of the game before because he was generally happy with his life and saw to need for an outlet, unlike Ralph, but now that he has left the game his “world-view” has changed.
3. and 6. (and 8.) The sequence I chose to analyze was the Bad-Anon meeting: “One Game at a Time”. This scene is a parody of an Alcoholics Anonymous (or other groups like Gambler’s Anonymous, etc.) in which the “bad-guys” from various video games came together for emotional support in their general dissatisfaction with being “bad-guys”. It seems odd that none of these characters seem to really like being bad, but some are better at resigning themselves to the fact that they are. I don’t think this necessarily means that all “bad-guys” dislike being bad, it’s just that those that are perfectly happy being evil wouldn’t be attending this particular meeting! This compilation of video characters in one spot (and the whole movie in general) has a “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” feel to it, in that they both use the idea that toons from all walks of life (cartoons/video games) live together in the same town.
The quote I chose came from the Bad-Anon meeting: “You are a ‘bad-guy’, but this does not mean that you are bad guy.” I know that this is confusing, but I get exactly what the wrestler was trying to say—who you are is not defined by what you are, and this is a common Disney (and non-Disney) idea. Ralph (and Felix) starts out the film as archtype of the bad-guy (good-guy) and that’s about it. But, as he ventures out into other games, he starts to see that he can be more than he was programmed to be (“I’m not bad, I’m just programmed that way”, another nod to WFRR). Ralph goes to “Hero’s Duty” to be a hero, and when he gets to “Sugar Rush” he actually starts to act like something other than a “bad-guy”. Sure, he has moments of relapse (anger issues, ranting, destroying Vanellope’s car, etc.), but he also has lots of “hero” moves (chasing off the racers who destroyed Vanellope’s first car, saving Felix, getting Felix to fix the car, training Vanellope to drive, fighting candy-cy-bugs, etc.) that ultimately define who he is—a good guy even though he still plays a “bad-guy”.
4. There weren’t many songs in this film, so I chose to analyze the “Shut Up and Drive” song. In this scene, Ralph teaches Vanellope how to drive her race car even though he can’t drive either! This feels like the traditional 80’s training montage and while fun, has been done to death in tons of movies since… well, the 80’s!
5. I symbol I chose to analyze was the medal from “Hero’s Duty”. Ralph goes after this medal so he can live in the penthouse at “Fix-It Felix Jr.” and prove that he is a good guy that has some inherent worth, contrary to how he was treated for 30 years in the game. So, Ralph gets the medal but Vanellope steals it and uses it to enter the “Sugar Rush” race because it kind of looks like a coin. The movie makes the point (and I got it) that both of them viewed the medal/coin as a “ticket to a better life”, Ralph so that he didn’t have to live in the dump and would be seen as a member of his community and Vanellope so that she could finally be a racer in the game and be part of her (racer) community. When they both realize that they are both outcasts, they form a bond and start a friendship—kindred spirits.
7. (and 8.) The take-home message for this movie is related to the quote I had above, and in general is that who you are is not necessarily defined by your station in life, it’s based on what you do and how you act. I think Ralph also learns that he can behave heroically, even if he is a “bad-guy”, and that is what defines who he is and not his programming. This general idea has been used by Disney at least twice before: (1) Jessica Rabbit, who was clearly drawn as a femme fatale but is a loving and caring wife to Roger, and a good person, and (2) Stitch, who was genetically designed to be evil but became a good puppy and loving member of Lilo and Nani’s ohana. And now we have Ralph, who was programmed to be a “bad-guy” but is now a good friend to Vanellope (and Felix) and is more generally accepted by his community members.
9. I don’t know if this is the most iconic scene, but it’s one that I found to be pretty funny—when Ralph accidentally kills Felix at the 30-year party. It just really plays to the whole “it’s-a-video-game” feel of the film.
10. OK, there really aren’t a whole lot of “Wreck It Ralph” pins that aren’t just a single character. So, I chose this one (122453) because it has Ralph, Vanellope, AND the “Hero’s Duty” medal.
Did my watchings, will post my analyses tomorrow s I have an eaaaaarly day at work.
I've watched both films for this week but just got off work and have a short turnover period before I have to be back. I have the full day off tommorow from work except for heading to check out my wife's ultrasound so hopefully get them in.
I'm so sorry for the delay. My brain is shot right now; I keep looking at my notes and they're not translating to cogent thoughts. I'll post my reviews tomorrow even if Merlin has to call the deadline beforehand.
According to the current schedule these tose two movies run until the 15 th, so you should be fine MAybe getting some rest will help?
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