Wreck-It Ralph

Wreck-It Ralph Sequel

With Frozen becoming the highest grossing animated flick of all time, Disney’s definitely in the place to keep developing their other beloved franchises. Wreck-It Ralph, the 2012 film that told us that video game villains can be people too, is in the process of getting its sequel, according to the film’s composer Henry Jackman. Jackman spoke to Collider recently in a sprawling interview about Captain America: The Winter Soldier, of which he composed the score (he’s also the man behind the music of Captain Phillips, X-Men: First Class, G.I. Joe Retaliation and This is the End) , and confirmed that the studio is currently writing up the script for a second dose of Wreck-It Ralph. At this point, the details are hazy on what that sequel entails, but Jackman was confident that it is indeed happening. “I can’t tell you more, not because I’m being coy, but I believe that it is officially on the cards,” he said. “I don’t know any more other than a story is indeed being written. I’d be very surprised not to. I’m not blowing my own trumpet. Forget about the music. Just the movie itself I thought was a fantastically imaginative and creative piece of work.”

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Gene Wilder in

When you boil the holidays we celebrate down to their essentials, the vast majority of them all reveal themselves to be about the same exact thing—candy. On Halloween we celebrate ghouls and candy, on Christmas it’s the Baby Jesus and Candy, on Easter it’s Undead Jesus and candy, and on Valentine’s Day it’s romance and candy. Basically, we take a break on Thanksgiving to eat pie, and that’s about the only exception. Sure, Halloween costumes, Christmas lights, and family togetherness all have their attractive qualities, but seeing as we’ve woven the consumption of candy into some level of each of these different holidays, maybe it’s about time we admit to ourselves that they were put together simply as transparent excuses for us to binge on sickly sweet confections in the first place. Of course, for movie geeks, holidays take on an additional purpose than the ones they serve for most other people. For us they serve both as an excuse to eat candy, and as an excuse to have movie marathons. On Halloween we tear through gruesome slashers (and trick or treat candy), on Christmas we stuff ourselves with sappy nostalgia (and stocking candy), and it all feels pretty damned good. There’s a problem with the holiday we’ve got coming up though, Valentine’s Day, in that anyone wanting to keep their movie marathon thematically appropriate is going to have to spend the day watching a bunch of rom-coms, and—let’s be honest—there are only so many of those that are good […]

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fountain08

After taking a weekend off, the Reject Recap returns with another look at the best movie news and features of the past week. As usual, we’ve got a mix of our own content and favorite stories from around the web. If you wrote or know of something posted that’s potentially deserving of being showcased here, please email me. Even if it’s not chosen for the top ten, if I like it I’ll give it a mention of some kind. While this Saturday morning sees yet another slot filled by Star Wars and obviously devotes another to SXSW before the fest has hardly even begun, there are some other good picks for both the movie geeks (features involving The Fountain and Big Trouble in Little China, for example) and the more academically minded cinephiles (a look at Romanian cinema and a few considerations of the best music docs ever made). Also, there’s two funny mash-up videos for your enjoyment. Start your weekend right after the jump.

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Best Animated Feature

Best Animated Feature is the youngest current Academy Award category, first given out in 2002 (to Shrek). It is often one of the easiest to predict, perhaps because of its youth but more likely because of the short list of films that qualify every year. There’s usually a very clear front-runner, and more than half of the time it’s been Pixar. That’s not the case this year. Competition is alive and well in the Best Animated Feature race. Here are the nominees with my prediction in red:

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Jennifer Lee

Seeing as Wreck-It Ralph was Disney Animation’s most well-received movie in quite a while, the studio has wasted no time in getting one of its main creative talents to work on a new project. Today they announced in a press release [via ComingSoon] that Ralph co-writer Jennifer Lee is not only going to be handling some writing duties on their upcoming animated feature, Frozen, but that she will also be serving as co-director alongside studio vet Chris Buck (Tarzan, Surf’s Up). Frozen is an adventure tale about a magical kingdom that’s suffering under a spell that keeps it trapped in a perpetual winter. Its main characters are a brave young girl named Anna, a burly mountain man named Kristoff, and a reindeer sidekick named Sven. The main thrust of the film’s narrative is said to be this trio’s journey to find the Snow Queen and find a way to reverse her spell, which of course leads to them encountering treacherous mountain passes, all sorts of magical whatsits, mystical trolls, comical snowmen, and who knows how many other examples of weirdness along the way. Forgetting Sarah Marshall’s Kristen Bell and Enchanted’s Idina Menzel are already on board to supply voices.

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James Bond in Skyfall

Put simply, Skyfall performed just as expected — it went big. Led by strong performances from Daniel Craig, Judi Dench and Javier Bardem as a delicious entry into the James Bond rogues gallery, Sam Mendes’ 23rd Bond film found itself atop them all with an outstanding $87.8 million domestic opening, besting the previous entry, Quantum of Solace‘s $67.5 million. It also became the fourth biggest opening of 2012, behind The Avengers, The Dark Knight Rises and The Hunger Games. Not bad for a 50-year old man with a gun.

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Wreck-It Ralph

On the leaderboard at the box office arcade this weekend, the initials read WIR, for Wreck-It Ralph. They could also read WDP for Walt Disney Pictures, as it was Disney’s incredible marketing push that led Ralph to a $49.1 million opening weekend, dwarfing the competition in the same weekend it swallowed Star Wars. Although it wasn’t just marketing, it was quality. Ralph rode an A Cinemascore grade and an 84% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes to become the highest opening for a Disney Animation movie ever, narrowly beating Tangled‘s $48.8 million take.

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People like to see the same plots rehashed over and over again. That’s how James Bond became such a long and successful series, isn’t it? Following Pixar’s success with Toy Story, the animation studio looked to follow a sort of pattern, but it wasn’t so much in terms of the storyline as the setup of having an ensemble of characters where each was representative of a different kind of some such (usually titular) thing. Toy Story starred different toys, then A Bug’s Life involved different types of bugs, Monsters, Inc. involved different types of monsters, Finding Nemo had different fish and other sea creatures and Cars had, of course, different models of automobile. Fortunately, Pixar has gotten a bit more inventive with their basic pitches, but now Disney has borrowed the model for Wreck-It Ralph. It could have easily been titled “Video Game Life” or “An Arcade Story.” There is a bit more to it than this, and in fact I was surprised to find that a lot of the movie is more about sweets than video games, especially where Alice in Wonderland-esque puns are concerned (the “laughing taffy” made me laugh). Overall, I had a good time watching the movie and appreciate the greatest addition to the Disney Princesses roster in years. But it didn’t really feel like something that will become a “Disney Classic,” and not just because our grandchildren will have no understanding of what arcade games are in a way they could relate to it. It […]

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Life of Pi AFI FEST

October offered up plenty of films to give this awards season a proper start. Ben Affleck once again showed he’s got one of the best eyes for tension working today; John Hawkes gave another year’s best performance in Fox Searchlight’s The Sessions; Martin McDonagh made another wicked, original dark comedy with real bite; and, who could forget, The Wachowskis and Tom Tykwer made a huge box office smash which received unabashed praise up the wazoo, especially for the seamless makeup work. While I wish Cloud Atlas did fit that description, at least for a few more years the trio’s daring and moving film will go down as a box office bomb which may or may have not been ahead of its time. No matter how Cloud Atlas stands up in a few years, it was the type of ambition which served as another reminder of how important going to the movie theater is and to truly have experiences while you are there, be they good or bad. With November 2012, there are plenty of movies to have a similar experience with, from Ang Lee‘s Life of Pi to a triumphant new Bond movie. Keep reading to find out what other eight movies you must see this month.

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WRECK-IT RALPH

As if we weren’t sold before, Wreck-It Ralph continues to look like a quarter bucket full of fun. The latest trailer – being shown internationally – shows off a bit more of the plot and focuses on Ralph’s (John C. Reilly) relationship with the pint-sized Vanellope (Sarah Silverman). For everyone whose soaked up as much marketing material as possible, it’s just another excuse to get excited. The big question now is if they’ll toss in a Konami Code joke. Check out the new trailer for yourself:

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Cloud Atlas

The first thirty minutes of hanging out in line or around the Alamo Drafthouse on Day One of Fantastic Fest is reserved for excited greetings, hugs you only get one week out of the year and a discussion of what’s been going on with family. It’s a community coming together just like any other, and that means baby photos and inside jokes. The week after those thirty minutes features a lot of topics, but it’s anchored by discussion about what the secret screenings will be. Amid conversations about how fast Donnie Yen really is and what sex with an octopus might yield, the active guessing of the unnamed movies perforates, growing in waves of disinformation and speculation as the time slot grows closer. The thrill of waiting in a packed theater (with a bucket of beer), filled with anticipation (and a bucket of beer from earlier) is one of the unique emotions the festival offers, and a big part of that is trying to fit uneven puzzle pieces together. This is pure speculation – borne from my years of experience with Fantastic Fest and a look at the forthcoming release calendar – so take it only as that. We already know what movies will be there, but here are 10 that just might show up in a TBA slot.

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Wreck-It Ralph

Each new look at Disney’s Wreck-It Ralph has revealed something to be excited about. From a cast featuring John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer and Jane Lynch to the huge population of video game icons living in the world of the movie, it hits a sweet spot of 80s and 90s nostalgia with some clever animation and what’s obviously a universal story of breaking out of an accepted space in order to find out who you really are. Also, jokes about the word “duty.” The theatrical trailer features all of these elements while delivering the standard, sweeping look at the adventure to come. Check it out for yourself:

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Disney’s upcoming animated arcade game adventure, Wreck-It Ralph, is in the unique position of already looking totally adorable as is and having a premise that lends itself to still more charming marketing ventures. The film features the voice of John C. Reilly as the eponymous Ralph, an arcade game baddie who is sick to death of smashing and crashing things. Ralph “lives” in a game called Fix-It Felix Jr., which should clue you in to who the supposed real star of his entire universe is (hint – it’s Jack McBrayer‘s goody-two-shoes, Felix). When Ralph decides to break out of his game, there are some very unexpected consequences (and, of course, lots of fun and plenty of nods to classic games, as we saw in the film’s first trailer). That said, of course Disney has crafted an actual version of Fix-It Felix Jr. that we can all play from home and of course it’s a heck of a lot of old school fun. Play the game for yourself right HERE. Hope your space bar finger is ready! Wreck-It Ralph smashes into theaters on November 22nd. [Disney, via AICN and FirstShowing]

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Wreck-It Ralph 2012

As it turns out, the ghosts from Pac-Man and Zangief from Street Fighter are part of an Anonymous support group and help each other through the hard times of being the villain. It’s a thankless job, one that often sees you spinning inward into a single pixel or exploding with only coins left to mark your memory. It’s that kind of world building that can be expected from Disney‘s Wreck-It Ralph. The first trailer of the animated flick that stars the vocal talents of John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer and Jane Lynch proves that the imaginations at work here filled up the studio. It seems like more than a standard story of a man trying to find his way in the world, although that’s definitely the framework; Ralph escapes his game and tries out all sorts of others. Beyond that, there’s a sense of wacky playfulness going on. It’s a universe of video game characters, and director Rich Moore and company seem to have had a hell of a fun time with it. Check out the trailer for yourself:

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Wreck-It Ralph 2012

There was almost no way that Wreck-It Ralph would have been entirely done in 8-bit. It would have been a bold move, but even if Community does it, it doesn’t mean a major studio should be that adventurous. I mean, they probably should, but they usually aren’t. Still, Disney’s project looks incredibly cool – and aimed squarely at the video game generation. The fine folks over at /film dug up these character designs – one for Ralph (voiced by John C. Reilly) and a few different concepts for his lady love Vanellope (voiced by Sarah Silverman). Check them out for yourself:

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What is Movie News After Dark? It’s the sun, the moon and the stars. Wait, I thought there’d be stars… We begin this evening with a blurry, somewhat comprehensible image of Spock (Zachary Quinto) falling in front of a green screen on the set of Star Trek 2. According to Screen Rant’s theory — and a spy report — this could very well be Spock falling into a Volcano on a “jungle planet” as part of a big CGI set piece. I’m for it.

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In Wreck-It Ralph, a villain (voiced by John C. Reilly) whose job is to bust up 8-bit buildings finds himself longing for more. It’s just like that time Donkey Kong started writing poetry and listening to The Cure. What did you think that funky Kill Screen was all about? Exactly. It’s a cool concept from Disney trading on nostalgia that includes multiple worlds (theoretically for Ralph to adventure through). There’s the racing game “Sugar Rush” and the space fighting game “Hero’s Duty,” and Disney has delivered the first look with three pictures (via CineHeroes). They’re all beautiful, but that’s par for the course at Disney. Check them out for yourself:

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