Ralph Breaks the Internet

Out Now On-Demand

John C. Reilly returns to voice to the sequel to Disney's 2012 3D animated adventure, along with Sarah Silverman and an all-star voice cast. This time, Ralph ventures into the World Wide Web.

Video game bad guy Ralph and fellow misfit Vanellope (Silverman) travel to the internet in search of a replacement part to save Vanellope's video game, Sugar Rush. In over their heads, Ralph and Vanellope rely on the citizens of the internet - the netizens - to help find their way, including an entrepreneur named Yesss (Taraji P. Henson), who is the head algorithm and the heart and soul of trend-making site BuzzzTube.

Last year's The Emoji Movie tried to manufacture popularity. It snatched something everybody's exposed to (emojis), jammed it into a done-to-death story ("Just be yourself!"), turned the crank on the storytelling sausage-maker, deep-fried it in product placement, and plopped out a lump of crap posing as a family film. Ralph Breaks the Internet may, at first, appear to be doing the exact same thing. Give it time though, and it becomes apparent how this sequel uses online spaces to tell a valuable modern tale in a number of visually stunning ways—despite the product placement.

Ralph (John C. Reilly) and Vanellope (Sarah Silverman) have been best buds for all six years since 2012's Wreck-It Ralph. When a damaged controller puts Vanellope's kart-racing home Sugar Rush out of order, only the elusive 'e-bay' holds a spare part. Thus, the smalltown pair journey into the wide world of the web to find it.

For a solid half hour, the film's simple-minded narrative has the characters going from A to B to C to D while passing more internet-related visual gags than anyone could possibly process in one sitting. It's fun, for sure, but the story doesn't seem to have much else going on for it... until Vanellope makes a sudden realisation about herself.

From here, the real story kicks in. With the introduction of Shank (Gal Gadot), an NPC from a hardout MMO racing world, and Disney's back catalogue of princesses, together forming the single funniest scene in the entire film, Vanellope gets the opportunity to expand her identity as both a racer and a princess. Her revelation will no doubt be relatable to many adults and it's a lesson made hilarious in the film's only musical number.

Where does that leave Ralph? Well, hint's in the title. He forms ties with Yesss (Taraji P Henson) who knows the fast-paced fashionability of internet trends so well, her outfit changes with every scene. As Ralph becomes a viral sensation, the film makes some surprisingly confronting statements about the fleeting adoration of online audiences, the banality of virality, and the unfiltered meanness of real-life people. They don't complicate these themes and why should they? Younger audiences are, or soon will be, entering the world wide web with eyes as fresh as Ralph's. Such frankness with important messages feels endearing.

Then there's the climax. Without giving too much away, it visualises a major problem within Ralph that he's struggled to contend with. Technically speaking, the spectacle is mighty. Artistically speaking, the moral is magnificent.

Hollywood Reporter


Deftly defying expectation, the inevitable sequel to 2012's... Wreck-It Ralph, absolutely crushes it.

Los Angeles Times


A witty, fastidiously imagined adventure and a touching, sometimes troubling ode to the power of friendship. But it also demonstrates some of the problems that can befall a movie when its vast ambition and confidence outstrip its finesse.

Variety (USA)


It's a poignant buddy movie that's sincere in all the right places, but knows better than to take itself too seriously.

New York Times


"Ralph Breaks the Internet" might look like just another adorable, funny animated family film, but it also connects to our current reality in ways that are downright bone-chilling.

Rolling Stone


Will he break the Internet or will it break him? It's painfully recognisable, this neediness, as is the rise and fall. Ralph, c'est moi.

The Guardian


Somewhere between Ready Player One and The Emoji Movie, summoning up a zero-gravity spectacle of dazzling colours and vertiginous perspectives, a featureless and inert mashup of memes, brands, avatars and jokes.

Vanity Fair


Written by Johnston and former TV recapper Pamela Ribon, the film has a witty logic that's just bendable enough.

NZ Herald (Dominic Corry)


The visualisation of the internet is dazzling to look at, but its conception emphasises reference over wit. Luckily the stellar character comedy more than makes up for this, and the film is overall undeniably beautiful to behold.

NewsHub (Kate Rodger)


While I didn't bring any inbuilt love for the character, I certainly left with it and there is one insanely delivered Disney princess sequence which may be one of the funniest things I've seen in years.

Stuff.co.nz (James Croot)


By the end, you'll be hooked and find that, as Vanellope puns, "farting is such sweet sorrow".