"Wreck-It Ralph" & "Life of Pi" - Thanksgiving Movies 2012
An excerpt from AMERICAN MOSAIC in VOA Special English.
(November 8, 2012)
Americans celebrate Thanksgiving in a couple of weeks. Families gather for a big meal centered on turkey. They also might play board games or watch a parade on television.
But many families also enjoy Thanksgiving at the movies. The holiday is usually extremely profitable for Hollywood. Today, we tell about a couple of films that are perfect for family movie viewing come November twenty-second.
The computer animated movie "Wreck-It Ralph" is already making big money at the box office. Disney released the movie on November second, and more than sixty-million dollars worth of tickets have been sold worldwide. "Wreck-It Ralph" is about a video game character of the same name. He is the traditional "bad guy" in a game called "Fix-It Felix." But Ralph longs to be a good guy.
He gets his chance at heroism when a dangerous "bug" threatens to destroy all the video games at his arcade. Ralph goes into battle to try to defeat the enemy bug.
The Academy Award - nominated actor John C. Reilly is the voice of Ralph. Comedian Sarah Silverman also stars as Vanellope, a driver in a racing game. Jane Lynch plays the strong and demanding soldier Sergeant Calhoun, who starts Ralph on his hero path.
Oscar winning director Ang Lee also presents a Thanksgiving movie choice with "Life of Pi." Lee spent four years and about one hundred million dollars to make the film.
"Life of Pi" is based on a book of the same name. Pi Patel is the son of a zookeeper in India. His family decides to move to Canada for a better life. They set off by ship with a few of the zoo animals.
But there is a disaster at sea. Pi ends up on a small boat with a Bengal tiger. The movie tells of their struggle to survive.
Ang Lee says the movie also explores deep philosophical questions. Lee filmed most of the movie in Taiwan, where he lives. The different movie sets included a very large water tank.
This is a first film for nineteen year old Suraj Sharma, the human star of "Life of Pi." He called the year shooting the film the "hardest and most beautiful of my life." Suraj Sharma told the Hindustan Times newspaper that he was not sure if he wanted to act again. But he said he knows he wants to be a part of movie-making in some way.