Save Ralph is a stop motion animated short film written and directed by Spencer Susser starring Taika Waititi, Ricky Gervais, Zac Efron, Olivia Munn, Pom Klementieff, Tricia Helfer, and Rodrigo Santoro.
The plot follows an interview with Ralph (Waititi), a rabbit who details his life as he is used for animal testing and the damages it has caused to his body. Produced by Jeff Vespa, the 4-minute short film was released by Humane Society International on April 6, 2021.
It can be viewed here.
The short contains examples of:
- Body Horror: Ralph's back is full of open wounds, his right ear is drooping and he can only hear a beeping sound, his blind right eye has turned white and later his left eye is so irritated that it looks more like a red dot in his face.
- Civilized Animal: Ralph can talk, walk on his hind legs, wears clothes and lives in what at first looks like a human home. Yet he's still a lab animal, and treated as such by the humans.
- Conditioned to Accept Horror: Ralph has lived his entire life as a test rabbit, seeing himself and his family being used as test subjects for cosmetics that cause damage to his skin, loss of vision and condition and in his family cause his life. But he has accepted this situation calmly by seeing humans as special.
- Shunned from the other rabbits, who waste no time asking Ralph to talk about their suffering and pleading with the documentary filmmakers to save them from dying. When an experimenter grabs Ralph and throws a substance into his only good eye they yell at him to leave him alone.
- Downer Ending: Ralph is still a test rabbit, he lost his vision in his left eye going blind and will probably die like many test rabbits from experiments on beauty products.
- Humans Are Bastards: All the pain and suffering that Ralph and other rabbits go through is thanks to the expiration of humans just to obtain beauty products.
- Humans Are Special: The reason Ralph accepts the suffering caused by trials is to help humans whom he sees as special for accomplishing feats like going into space.
- It Runs in the Family: Ralph's parents and siblings are all test animals just like him, and they all likely died too.
- Internalized Categorism: Ralph sees himself and the rest of the rabbits as inferior to humans, as such humans have the right to experiment with them for their own benefit by being superior.
- Nice Guy: Instead of hating or resenting humans for all the physical and emotional damage plus the death of his family from his experiments, Ralph admires humans and seems to accept their suffering as a necessary evil for the good of the human species.