Based on the popular video game series for the Playstation systems, “Ratchet and Clank” has arrived looking to take the duo’s success to the big screen in a new animated adventure. The film follows the diabolical Chairman Drek (Paul Giamatti), who has a nefarious scheme that leaves planets destroyed in his wake. The government decides to hire an additional Ranger for protection which leads lowly mechanic Ratchet (James Arnold Taylor), to see his chance for greatness. Sadly the head of the Rangers; an ego-maniac named Captain Qwark (Jim Ward), dismisses the physically unimpressive Ratchet and thus crushes his dreams.
Fate steps in when a defective robot named Clank (David Kaye) arrives with news that will shake the very fabric of the galaxy. Ratchet and Clank team up to help the Rangers and must overcome all obstacles on all sides to save the day. The animation of the film is solid and it was a bit of a surprise that the film was not presented to us in 3D which has become the norm for animated film. The solid voice cast does a good job and there are more than a few nice celebrity voices along the way. The biggest issue I had with the film was that it was a bit dull and dragged in places. Our screener was loaded with children and families and I saw some leave the cinema during the film and did not return.
The movies takes a while to get going and there are more than a few nods to the game and other Playstation characters along the way. The biggest issue is that it seems as if the film is dedicated to hardcore fans of the series. I have played the last three games in the series and I found myself lost at times as it was clear that this was for those who have been there from the start. This is not to say that new fans will not be gained by the film, but one has to wonder how many children who are not familiar with the characters will have the patience to wait for things to get rolling in the film.
As it stands the film is a good first effort but may or may not be enough to successfully launch a long term franchise.
3 stars out of 5.