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  1. Published on: 07/02/2019 08:47 PMReported by: Film Critic
    Plot: With the arrival of wi-fi into the arcade, Ralph and Princess Vanellope go searching through the internet to save Vanellope's game, Sugar Rush.

    It's been just over two years since are last film from Walt Disney Animation Studios in the form of Moana. That classic studio that we all know and love that began with Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs over 80 years ago is back with its 57th instalment.

    The wait for a sequel from the brilliant 2012 hit Wreck-It Ralph was pretty high. So high that it became one of my most anticipated films of the year.

    I was intrigued by the idea of the sequel and the endless possibilities the studio could go for in this film. I went in with high expectations and another welcomed addition to Disney's surging modern golden era.

    The first half I must say was probably one of the strongest openings I've seen for a long time. It gives us a little catch up on what's been happening while we've been away, and where we're going next.
    The build-up to seeing the internet was pretty cool to see and then once we got in there, goodness me was I amazed.
    On paper, it sounds like a tricky thing to evolve such a large digital world and make it into a living thing, portray it on screen and make it feel relatable for the viewer. But what the people making the film do is do that brilliant of making it super-clever and yet simple at the same time. It's a tricky thing to do, but the end results when it works is like lighting in a bottle.
    The film was moving nicely, it was incorporating moments of the first film well, it was making me laugh with its smart gags and I was having a right old time with it. Just when I thought it couldn't get better, there was a fantastic Disney section in the story that made me feel like a kid in a candy store. References everywhere, some self-referential humour and some nice Easter eggs for the Disney nerds like myself.
    However, I did realise at one point that this film is missing an antagonist and I began to be concerned as what they're going to do about that. It came in the end, and whilst it does kind of slow down and match my enjoyment of the first half, it still gave us a solid ending.

    What I liked about it the most was the look of it, the high-level of creativity and imagination and the large number of references used that made the geek inside me go nuts. The look of it was like a lot of Disney films. Lots of vibrant colours and the matching energy to the editing made it a highly positive viewing experience.
    I was in love at how the internet was portrayed. Everything about it felt incredibly relatable and I would imagine so many others would feel the same way. Each new bit that they introduced on screen I was instantly on board with and just admired the cleverness and simplicity with each aspect.
    With the film being set in the world of the internet, there was bound to be many references to several popular products and franchises.
    With me being a Disney nut, I was in heaven with the amount of references mentioned in several scenes. There were even some nods to even the most obscure Disney films which pleased me.

    The only problems I had with it were small and all in the second half. There was definitely one point in the film where you can see film-makers saying "Oh yeah, we need a villain", and they certainly tried their best to introduce some form of an antagonist.
    So whilst the villainous side of the story was good in the end, it just could not match extremely strong first half. That for me made the final act never have that strong send-off like Wreck-It Ralph had.
    Also, it touches on certain topics that explore the dark side of the internet that the younger generation experience. But sadly, they only ever touched it and never went delved deep into it. It almost seemed pointless to do it as they knew they had to concentrate on the story. So I think they should have committed to these points or not at all instead of dipping their toes into it.

    But like I said, my problems were only small ones and it's easy to see that I really enjoyed this. It expanded the world our characters were in really well and shows where this could go if a third part ever went in the works.
    The camaraderie of Ralph and Venelope was great to see develop and I was pleased to see they were never afraid to go down challenging routes for our characters to face. I could be cruel and say the story is nothing original. But it's still a well told story with themes you expect to see in a Disney animation.
    As mentioned before, the way they put the internet onto screen was nothing short of fantastic, and the amount of references put into this made it feel like a game and see how many I could get. A few of the subtle may go over the general audiences heads. But the more advanced experts should get all of them and amazed and how much they crammed in without ruining the flow of the story.
    While the momentum does somewhat slow down in the second half, it still moves along enough to give you well told story with lots of goodies for fans of Disney, anything topical and mainstream animated films. That is certainly the film The Emoji Movie could have been if it actually tried.

    There a couple of bonus scenes during the credits. The first one halfway through was rather funny, and the one at the very end of the credits was particularly clever of teasing the audience and ended up being a wonderful homage to a classic internet sensation.

    Rating: 8/10
    Last edited by Film Critic; 17/02/2019 at 08:37 PM.

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