February 25, 2019  (Web Review)

Ralph Breaks the Internet

Disney, 112 min., PG, DVD: $29.99, Blu-ray/DVD Combo: $39.99, Feb. 26

Reviewer rating: 3.5/4

This Oscar-nominated satirical sequel to Wreck-It Ralph (2012) is set in Litwack’s Family Fun Center & Arcade, where Ralph (voiced by John C. Reilly) and Vanellope (Sarah Silverman) are best friends. While burly Ralph is totally content, spunky Vanellope yearns to spice up her rote racing routine. A crisis occurs when the steering wheel of Vanellope’s aging Sugar Rush game breaks and the only replacement part is very expensive on eBay. Since Litwack (Ed O’Neill) has just installed wi-fi, Vanellope and Ralph venture into the vast, cacophonous cityscape of the World Wide Web. Without money to pay for the wheel, they consult the search-engine KnowsMore (Alan Tudyk) and embark on a cyber scavenger hunt, landing in an anarchic Slaughter Race, where they encounter leather-clad Shank (Gal Gadot) and her gritty road warrior gang. Then it’s on to BuzzzTube, run by the slick algorithm Yesss (Taraji P. Henson), who propels insecure Ralph into humiliating himself as a viral video superstar. And there’s Double Dan (Alfred Molina), the slug-like overlord of the Dark Web. The highlight is a hilarious Magic Kingdom get-together with Disney fairy-tale princesses, including Ariel (Jodi Benson), Moana (Auli’i Cravalho), Belle (Paige O’Hara), Pocahontas (Irene Bedford), Anna (Kristen Bell), and Elsa (Idina Menzel). Co-directed by Phil Johnston and Rich Moore, this is an incisive and inventive film, filled with humor, heart, and meta moments. Highly recommended. [Note: DVD/Blu-ray extras include the behind-the-scenes featurette “How We Broke the Internet” (33 min.), deleted scenes (19 min.), “The Music” (11 min.), “Surfing for Easter Eggs” (4 min.), “BuzzTube Cats” (2 min.), and the music videos “Zero” by Imagine Dragons and “In this Place” by Julia Michaels. Exclusive to the Blu-ray release are bonus DVD and digital copies of the film. Bottom line: a solid extras package for this Oscar-nominated sequel.] (S. Granger)