Ratchet & Clank

1.5 Stars

I won’t say that a successful film adaptation of a video game can’t ever happen, but the two forms are so different, it would take something that audiences haven’t seen yet for it to work. Ratchet & Clank is not that. Essentially serving as a feature-length cutscene that happens to be tied into a forthcoming remake of the original game of the same name, Ratchet & Clank is utterly generic and almost completely forgettable.

When Ratchet (James Arnold Taylor), a fox-like creature, discovers a crashed robot that he chooses to name Clank (David Kaye), the two team up to convince Captain Qwark (Jim Ward) to let them help stop Chairman Drek (Paul Giamatti) from firing the Deplanetizer created by Dr. Nefarious (Armin Shimerman).

It’s not exactly a unique concept, and it doesn’t help that other animation studios have had similar plots in recent years (Home came to mind in the first few minutes). Ratchet & Clank, though, feels like a cheaper version of those films, with more attention to focusing on the threadbare plot (and a series of “wink-wink, nudge-nudge, can’t you see how hilarious we are?!?” jokes that feel horribly dated) than possibly showing some solid fight scenes. It’s essentially a professionally-produced extended cut scene, released into theaters instead of onto YouTube. It’s not horribly offensive, and young kids will likely enjoy it. But those kids will also probably enjoy playing the new Ratchet & Clank video game, and at least that way, they’re doing something that’s a little more active.

Ratchet & Clank • Rating: PG (for action and some rude humor) • Runtime: 94 minutes • Genres: Animation, Comedy, Action • Cast: Paul Giamatti, John Goodman, Bella Thorne, Rosario Dawson, James Arnold, David Kaye • Directors: Kevin Munroe, Jericca Cleland • Writers: Kevin Munroe, Gerry Swallow, TJ Fixman • Distributor: Gramercy

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