“Based on the best-selling videogame” is a warning, not an enticement. Yet here is Ratchet & Clank, inspired (though no actual creative inspiration came anywhere near infecting this movie) by the PlayStation videogame series of the same name that debuted in 2002. Ratchet (the voice of James Arnold Taylor) is a Lombax—a sort of half-fox, half-cat alien biped—and is generally reminiscent of the incredibly popular videogame hero Sonic the Hedgehog, though I’m sure that’s pure coincidence. I’m sure it’s also a coincidence that much of this tediously familiar adventure story rips off a lot of its bits from the Star Wars prequel trilogy, which debuted a few years before the first game. Is Ratchet destined for greatness, to save the galaxy even though he is a foolhardy screw-up with almost nothing to his name but maybe some undisciplined smarts and outsized aspirations to grandeur? Of course he is, with the help of robotic sidekick Clank (the voice of David Kaye). Toss in some Strauss musical cues from 2001: A Space Odyssey, and you have a movie that might think it’s meta but is nothing more than meh.
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