Tag Archives: Jack McBrayer

The Set of 400: #191 – My Favorite Homeless Q*bert

Today! Because I’m bad, and that’s good. I will never be good, and that’s not bad –

Wreck-It Ralph (2012)

Directed by Rich Moore

Starring John C. Reilly (x5), Sarah Silverman (x2), Jane Lynch (x4), Jack McBrayer (x2), Alan Tudyk (x2), Joe Lo Truglio (x3), Mindy Kaling, Ed O’Neill (x2), Dennis Haysbert, Edie McClurg (x2), Rachael Harris, Adam Carolla, Horatio Sanz (x2), Maurice LaMarche, John DiMaggio (x2)

The shining example of a kid’s movie made for adults, Wreck-It Ralph includes loads of old video game characters and cameos, from Q*bert to Doctor Robotnik, voiced by a terrific group of comedians milking the arcade gags for all their worth. Even the central games of the story – Fix-It Felix Jr. and Sugar Rush – are thinly disguised versions of Rampage and Super Mario Kart. And being a kid who grew up in the ’80s and ’90s, obsessed with Atari, Nintendo, Sega Genesis, and Super Nintendo, this movie obviously was geared toward me and mine, not the Xbox children of today.

But while the first half hour does feel a tad gimmicky – these large scale Avengers style combinations of characters can’t help but suffer a little in design – it is still driven by a terrific little story, as Fix-It Felix Jr. villain Ralph is disgruntled with being the perennial bad guy and looks for a way to improve his standing with his game’s other characters. This leads his adventure through the arcade, winning a medal in the Halo-esque Hero’s Duty, and subsequently losing it in the candy-heavy racing game. There are plenty of fun twists and turns, but the emotional heart of the film separates it from other similar animated fare, as Ralph is tasked with helping Sugar Rush’s glitched racer Vanellope against the wishes of literally every character in her game. Continue reading

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The Set of 400: #372 – My Favorite Temptations

Today! Because I done a bad thing/cut my brother in half –

Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story (2007)

Directed by Jake Kasdan

Starring John C. Reilly, Kristen Wiig, Jenna Fischer, Craig Robinson, Harold Ramis, Ed Helms, Jack White, Raymond J. Barry, Margo Martindale, Tim Meadows, Honeyboy Edwards, Jack Black, Jonah Hill (x2), Justin Long, Paul Rudd (x2), Jason Schwartzman, Martin Starr, Rance Howard, Chris Parnell, Matt Besser, Jack McBrayer, Frankie Muniz, Ian Roberts, David Krumholtz, Jane Lynch, Simon Helberg, Jackson Browne, Jewel, Lyle Lovett, Ghostface Killah, Eddie Vedder

This totally wacky send-up of mid ’00s musical biopics really hit the spot for me in ’07. It borders on Airplane! style lunacy at times, hurling jokes as fast as it can, and many manage to stick thanks to the all-in performance the great John C. Reilly gives at all ages of Dewey’s life from 14 onward. He’s supported by an utterly astounding number of comedians willing to throw a few minutes into the film. Sure, it rambles all over the place in search of jokes – while I enjoy the Jack White Elvis and the Black/Rudd/Long/Schwartzman Beatles, they do feel a bit like overkill. I particularly love Tim Meadows bits as Dewey’s drummer, continually trying to dissuade him from whatever vice currently being enjoyed. But I think the thief of the film is X-Files great Raymond J. Barry as Dewey’s father, constantly bemoaning “Wrong kid died!” It’s silly madness, replete with equally goofy original songs, and was still almost completely ignored in its day at the box office. Totally deserving of an audience! Continue reading

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