I grew up playing video games on Sega, Atari, Nintendo NES systems and *gasp* at an arcade. I can remember 3-4 month long family trips to Korea where I would disappear for hours playing Arkanoid with kids at a small korean arcade. Funny, I couldn’t even speak a complete sentence to them, but I had made friends nonetheless through our daily meetings. Its kind of funny looking back on how much fun and addicting it was to play “old school” games like Qbert, Frogger, Super Mario Bros., when you compare it to what we have nowadays. Even though the games have dramatically improved, I sometimes still miss the simplicity of the old 8 bit video games.
I can remember bringing the Atari to Buffalo for our family Christmas trips and getting all the aunts, uncles, cousins, and neighbors completely addicted to Pac Man. No one could escape the inevitable “Atari thumb” the next day. While I love the convenience and incredible technology we have available at home on our advanced gaming systems, there is something to be missed about the days when kids got together at an arcade. I’m sure this nostalgia rings true for many and I’m sure this is why Wreck it Ralph will appeal to everyone – young and old.
From Walt Disney Animation Studios and Emmy®-winning director Rich Moore comes “Wreck-It Ralph,” a hilarious, arcade-game-hopping adventure. For decades, Ralph (voice of John C. Reilly) has been overshadowed by Fix-It Felix, Jr. (voice of Jack McBrayer), the good-guy star of their game who always gets to save the day. Tired of playing the role of a bad guy, Ralph takes matters into his own massive hands and sets off on a journey across the arcade through multiple generations of video games to prove he’s got what it takes to be a hero.
On his quest, Ralph meets tough-as-nails Sergeant Calhoun (voice of Jane Lynch) from the first-person action game Hero’s Duty, and feisty misfit Vanellope von Schweetz (voice of Sarah Silverman) from the candy-coated cart-racing game Sugar Rush, who may just be his first real friend. But everything changes when a deadly enemy is unleashed, threatening the entire arcade and Vanellope herself. Ralph finally gets his chance to save the day—but can he do it in time?
Rated PG by the MPAA, “Wreck-It Ralph” crashes onto the big screen on November 2, 2012, in Disney Digital 3D™ in select theaters. For more information, visit Wreck it Ralph online, on Facebook, and on Twitter.
While the full movie review is another post for another time (not at 2am like this one), I will say that the movie had something for everyone in my family. If one flick can make a 35 year old man, a 30 (ahem) something year old woman AND a 3 year old toddler laugh and remain engaged the entire time, then it’s a keeper in my book!
While I have been lucky enough to experience several Disney Red Carpet premieres at the beautiful El Capitan Theatre, this one was Daddy’s second and little monkey-butt Whistler’s first!
Being the pro that I am, we planned it just right to walk onto the carpet at the same time as Sarah Silverman (or it could have been dumb luck, no one will ever know). If you have never been to a Red Carpet affair, this is the view from the carpet looking out. I always kind of feel like a deer in headlights, smiling and waving behind the stars as if I’m someone too.
My trainees did so well, that while I purposefully had them stop RIGHT HERE to take this photo…
I *knew* we could take advantage of Sarah Silverman and get in on some B Roll action too (see the right side of this photo below.) Pretty cool, huh?
Even more gratifying was that Sarah at one point turned around, saw Whistler and gave a huge “AWWWWWW!!!!!“. It’s confirmed folks. We have a cute kid :)
Even with all the “red carpet” glitz and glam aside, the historic El Capitan in Hollywood is quite a magical place to see a movie in PERIOD. I highly recommend it and they have some fun planned for this movie there thru Dec 18! If you are local to Southern California this is definitely the spot to take your family to see Wreck it Ralph (or any Disney film for that matter!!)
And if you happen to rate a theater by its popcorn, I think this Face-in-Bucket shot is the ultimate seal of approval. No words needed.
After the film, we headed over to Sweet! at the Hollywood & Highland Center, where we stopped to meet the characters before heading in. This was the most ridiculously fun and BIGGEST candy store I, and quite possibly, the world has ever seen! We aren’t candy connoisseurs by any means, but it really was the perfect location for Wreck it Ralph’s celebratory party – complete with actual Fix it Felix, Jr. arcade games near the entrance.
There was plenty of great food to eat (sorry, no pictures because I gobbled it down too fast!) and a fun carnival style game to play to try and win some shirts. Obviously made for adults, this large wooden facade had constantly rotating Wreck it Ralph heads with an open mouth hole in which you needed to throw an apple into. We watched several older kids and adults fail miserably at this task before sending our 3 year old in for a turn.
Whistler was given 3 apples and slap my butt and call me George, he actually made the last one in! I was so proud as the game attendee watched in awe as my little guy timed his extremely awesome throw perfectly. (see below) Mind you, Whistler is standing a good 3 feet away from the wall AND 2 feet lower than the hole!
We saw many celebrities enjoying the evening – Chuck Liddell, Molly Ringwald, Tia Carrere, Jane Lynch, and so many others. Sorry, I didn’t snap pictures of any of them because many were having such a great time with their family that I had no desire to interrupt.
As we walked around the store taking in the tasty sights and sounds, we realized they must have been pumping sugar in the air. Seriously – Whistler began bouncing off the walls and drooling like a rabid dog. So although we needed to make a hasty retreat due to an impending toddler meltdown, others were able to build their own chocolate bars with dozens of unique ingredients, imprint their portraits on candy-coated chocolates or race gumballs in a Ferrari-powered gumball machine.
Before bolting out the door, we were able to catch a glimpse of them making rainbow ribbon-candy right there in the store and if you have ever seen glass being blown, its very similar!
A huge thank you to Disney for inviting myself and my family to this red carpet premiere and the VIP afterparty. We had a blast and all opinions expressed are 100% original.