When the arcade closes for the day, all of the characters in all of the video games mingle together happily... except for the bad-guys. One bad guy in particular - Ralph (Reilly), the villain of classic game "Fix It Felix Jnr" - is fed up living a lonely life, being feared by all. When he learns that there's something he can get his hands on that will possibly make the other characters like him, he heads in to a neighbouring, first-person shooter game to retrieve it. Instead, he accidentally unleashes that game's scary, virus-like bad-guys into the other games in the arcade. Ralph must join forces with Vanellope Von Schweetz (Silverman), a glitch in an insanely cute car-racing game, the shooter's hero Sergeant Calhoun (Lynch) and his own nemesis Felix Jnr (McBrayer), to save the day before its game over for everyone.
Basically, Wreck-It Ralph is where Toy Story meets The Matrix, with enough video-game references to send game-fans into a state of nerd-vana. What could have been an empty excuse for endless product placement instead becomes a hilarious and visually impressive tale of two-misfits trying to find their place in their worlds. The voice-cast don't come across as a bunch of A-listers who've been drafted in for the sake of having big names on the bill. They're proper character actors who instil their avatars with heart. Reilly is great as the gruff but misunderstood "bad-guy who's not a bad guy", Lynch is outstanding as the kick-ass heroine, and McBrayer's Felix is basically 30 Rock's Kenneth with a slightly higher IQ. But the real scene-stealer is Silverman as Von Schweetz, an sickeningly adorable character that should be beyond irritating but actually ends up being hugely loveable.
The visuals are spot-on, perfectly encapsulating the 8-bit look of the older games, right up to the cutting edge graphics of the more recent releases, and while there are a lot of hilarious one-liners, there is a sense that given the huge universe they had to play with, the main story feels a little too slight and straight-forward. But if anything, this should make you want a Wreck-It Ralph 2 all the more.