We saw the preview of Ratchet and Clank this past week in NYC. Check out our review below! In theaters April 29.
Ratchet and Clank is the latest in a long line of films derived from video games, a trend that seems to be picking up with the Angry Birds release slated for May and now Ratchet and Clank for a summer release, among others. That said, in a crowded field, Ratchet and Clank holds its own with an agreeable story, mesmerizing visuals, and slick vocal talent from the likes of Bella Thorne and John Goodman.
Ratchet and Clank involves a young mammal (Ratchet, played by James Taylor Arnold) obsessed with technology and creating. He dreams of protecting his planet as a member of a elite team of protectors. When a new spot opens on the team alongside self-obsessed Captain Quark (played by Jim Ward), Ratchet applies for the position but loses. However, a defective robot (Clank, played by David Kaye) from another planet crash lands at Ratchet’s home and warns of impending danger. Together they work to protect the planet, both join the team of protectors, and go on to save the entire galaxy from the evil Drek (played by Paul Giamatti).
The plot isn’t complicated, but is dependent on good timing and a decent amount of suspense. The saving grace is cheap one-liners and comedic relief that is designed to get a rise out of kids. But for adults, the world (rather, Galaxy) built for Ratchet and friends is huge and impressive, even the spaceships and vehicles are clever. It’s a modification of the world we know, maybe set further into the future. The leader of the protectors ultimately defects to the opposing team, betraying his world and his fans. This sell-out concept may be a little abstract for young fans; allowing the film to breath and connect with a big audience (not to mention the countless fans of the video game series).
Clank, despite being a robot, is particularly fun to watch. Frankly, film drags until Clank kickstarts the whole thing about 15 minutes in. Ratchet on his own is uninspiring and too self-obsessed to be funny. The contrast between the two brings humility to Ratchet and staid humor to Clank.
It’s vivid, the sounds are stunning, the voice talent handles the circumstances well, even if Ratchet sounds a little too nervous and hesitant. Again, that subtlety may be nearly undetectable to the young viewer. Or, said viewer might relate to it the most.
In theaters everywhere 29 April 2016.