Ratchet & Clank Review - Charming, Thrilling, Fun Space Age Animation

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Ratchet & Clank, from Gramercy Pictures, presents an intergalactic space battle of epic proportions in a galaxy far, far, away, as two unlikely companions become heroes and with the new found fame face challenges that could bring cataclysmic disaster.

Based on the best selling PlayStation video game, Ratchet & Clank, is brought to the big screen through the skill of director and screenwriter Kevin Munroe.

Voicing the well-known characters of Ratchet & Clank are James Arnold Taylor as Ratchet, David Kaye as Clank with Paul Giamatti as Drek, Bella Thorne as Cora, Rosario Dawson as Elaris, Armin Shimerman as Dr. Nefarious, Vincent Tong as Brax, Andrew Cownden as Zed, Lee Tockar as Mr. Micron, Tabitha St. Germain as Juanita Alvaro and Brian Dobson as Dallas Wannaker. Ratchet & Clank also brings to it cast the incomparable voice talent of Sylvester Stallone as Victor and John Goodman as Grimroth.

Ratchet & Clank begins on Veldin, an inhabited planet in a solar system outside the known world. Veldin, similarly modern has a variety of inhabitant’s humans and animals with human characteristics and the occasional highly evolved emobot, the emotional robot.

Our Ratchet, a wily, cute fox voiced by James Arnold Taylor, who is fixated on the Galactic Rangers, a group of power ranger type characters, each with a special power and gift. Trained in special, intergalactic space weapons, advanced technology and some super IQ; others brawn.

Captain Qwark, voiced by Jim Ward, is the face of the Galactic Rangers. A larger than life charismatic personality, Qwark leads the elite team made up of the courageous take no prisoners Cora, voiced by Bella Thorne, ace space warrior Brax voiced by Vincent Tong, and support staff, the brilliant and undervalued strategist, Elaris voiced by Rosario Dawson.

The Galactic Rangers are holding auditions to add a team member as reports on the news reveal the destruction of another planet by the evil and former Galactic Ranger scientist, Dr. Nefarious, voiced by Armin Shimerman, and the Blargian villain Chairman Drek, voiced by Paul Giamatti.

Ratchet has waited his entire life to show the world his skill, an expert, well sometimes, mechanic he works at the space vehicle repair shop of Grimroth, voiced by John Goodman.

With the words of Grimroth ringing in his head, Ratchet heads to the auditions and without even consideration, he is tossed. Feeling dejection and assigned to a fate outside his destiny, Ratchet retreats to his perch high above the canyons, watching the moons, and essentially hoping for a sign.

Our guy doesn’t have to wait long and destiny would have it a bright light hurls across the sky and, like life, sometimes we need a clear and falling from the sky sign. Reacting as a superhero, Ratchet pulls what appears to be a robot, from the burning wreckage.

Which is where we first meet Clank, voiced by David Kane, disoriented, injured and on the run having crash landed into Veldin and Ratchet’s home.

Unknown to Ratchet, Clank has been labeled a defect by the evil Chairman Drek and have sent an army of highly evolved, massive robots to destroy him.

A quick diagnostic Ratchet is able to repair the motherboard which allows Clank to relay the cataclysmic news Drek and Dr. Nefarious are heading to Valdin to destroy the planet. Engaging the inner-galaxy warlords with Ratchet’s newly design magnetic relay shield allows them to save the planet before the Galactic Rangers have time to react.

Finally, Ratchet has his dream, finally a Galactic Ranger! Working with the team he is one of them, dedicated to the cause of defending home, planet against all evil intruders. Finally, our super intelligent emobot, Clank is banished to support staff where he expertly discerns the treatment of Elaris is condescending, which a normal robot couldn’t as it is emotional.

As Ratchet is now famous, Captain Qwerk is out as Number One media draw for the Galactic Rangers which as an aging talent he knows once the media leaves everything else falls away, no more endorsements, no autographs, no interviews, no special treatment.

Ratchet & Clank is an exciting, animated film. The team successfully navigated the jump for our characters from the small screen to theatrical, and the big screen, seamlessly. The attention to details is stunning. Beyond simply the characterization of each of the team members, the home planet, and lifestyle are well done and solid.

Ratchet & Clank, an animated film in 2D, has all the eye popping colors and clarity of 3D. Sharp, dynamic visuals, high tech warfare and technologically advanced civilizations allow the director and writers to add some pretty cool toys while incorporating contemporary gizmos and gadgets.

Having never seen the PlayStation game, I entered the theater without background on the characters or game. Which isn’t necessary, Ratchet & Clank is a standalone film. Meant, of course, for the children’s demographic, Ratchet & Clank, like most animated films has a moral of the story and meaning that transcends the visuals and context and ends up right penetrating the adult mind through all the other barrage of messaging.

Ratchet & Clank is an interplanetary adventure, filled with dynamic chase scenes, wild newfangled arsenals of super technological gadgets. A journey of fun for all ages, entertaining, action packed, space age thrill ride in a galaxy far, far away. Ratchet & Clank does not disappoint.

Ratchet & Clank opens in theaters everywhere April 29, 2016. Check local listings.

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