Ralph is a misunderstood bad guy. In Wreck-It Ralph, Ralph’s job is to break windows and an apartment building so that his video game friend, Fix-It Felix Jr. can make repairs and be the good guy. But, because he’s not really a bad guy, and his bad-guy persona makes it hard for Ralph to make friends. When he leaves his game to try to win a medal so that he can prove what a good guy he is, he makes his first real friend, Vanellope von Schweetz, a down-on-her-luck race car driver from another video game.
As Vanellope and Ralph bond, the two face their toughest moral tests as friends and define what a “good guy” really is. Here are some lessons to discuss with kids:
- Give everyone a chance. Ralph is a big guy whose job is to break the building so that Felix Jr. can fix it. Without Ralph, Felix doesn’t have a job. But, Ralph isn’t a bad guy. He wants to be good and works hard to try to be a good guy. Regardless if someone in your child’s class is big or small or everywhere in between, everyone deserves a chance to show how good they can be.
- Don’t believe everything you hear. King Candy told Ralph a lie about Vanellope and her “glitch” so that she wouldn’t win the race and everyone would learn the truth about King Candy. Ralph believed the lie and broke Vanellope’s car. Children need to know the importance of verifying information, especially stories that could make them take actions that can hurt others.
- Rely on your support. Ralph waited until the 30th anniversary party of his game – a party he wasn’t invited to – to join a support group for video game villains. He met others who had the same problems he did, they were all misunderstood. Talk to your kids about not waiting to find the support they need when they feel that a situation is unfair.
Now that you’ve seen Wreck-It Ralph, try these screen-free activities inspired by the movie.
- Make hero sugar cookies. Replicate Ralph’s medal with these tasty, chewy cookie replicas.
- Set up car races. Vanellope’s dream was the be a racer, so find or build a track for mini-car races. If your kids are older, try a wooden kit to let them build their own car.
- Create your own candy cars. With some graham cracker bases, let your kids create their own candy cars, with cookies or peppermints for wheels, frosting, and don’t forget to sign it.
- Build your own Fix-It Felix apartment. Using wooden blocks, Legos, magnetic tiles – or even brick-sized Rice Crispy Treats, build your own apartment building, then have someone wreck it and see how fast it can be built again.
- Earn a medal. Ralph has to beat the cy-bugs to earn his medal, what can your kids do around the house or in the neighborhood to earn medals? Maybe it’s help with chores, help out younger siblings or mow a neighbor’s lawn.