Review: Sonic The Hedgehog outruns the competition

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SONIC THE HEDGEHOG is a live-action adventure comedy based on the global blockbuster videogame franchise from Sega that centers on the infamously brash bright blue hedgehog. The film follows the (mis)adventures of Sonic as he navigates the complexities of life on Earth with his newfound – human – best friend Tom Wachowski (James Marsden). Sonic and Tom join forces to try and stop the villainous Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey) from capturing Sonic and using his immense powers for world domination. The film also stars Tika Sumpter and Ben Schwartz as the voice of Sonic.

Sonic is fun, he’s fast, and he’s full of character! It’s understandable to have low expectations for a video game movie, as we usually get more Doom’s than we do Detective Pikachu’s but this is one of the exceptions.

The Good:

This movie is funny! Like really funny! Knowing Jim Carrey is in this movie is one thing but you never know what you’ll get with him when he’s cast. This is one of those movies where Jim Carrey nails his role and his performance beautifully. He’s incredibly laugh out loud funny in this movie and there are multiple times when he elevates a scene with his comedic timing and lines. There’s a scene where Carrey’s Doctor Robotnik interacts with an army general that sets the tone for his character throughout the rest of the movie. Things just elevate from this scene and makes the unlikely casting of Carrey that much more perfect.

Sonic looks great! His character redesign goes a long way with me being okay with the film because he looks like the character I remember. One major deterrent that’s avoided is when a character looks out of place when interacting with live action actors and that’s a testament to the direction and art design. Kudos to those guys. I still don’t know if there was someone walking around in a mo-cap suit or not to help make this possible but however it was done was the right way. The voice acting was really good for Sonic and reminded me of Jaleel White’s (Perfect) take on the character from the 90’s.

The writing was pretty good. The pacing was good! There’s only a single portion of the story that I thought could have moved faster but aside from that nitpick the movie moves at an appreciable pace.  The story moves quickly through the non-essential moments but caringly takes time to slow down with the audience for moments that require time.

There are a few plot holes, and  I usually nitpick about plot holes, but I forgive Sonic for not giving us his whole origin and backstory. It’s not necessary for the story to dwell on things aside from the requirement to rationalize why Sonic is on Earth and what he’s trying to accomplish. Instead, we’re offered the origin of Doctor Robotnik which is beautifully delivered and grounds the antagonistic relationship between the good doctor and his adversary. Just like Avengers Infinity War can be viewed as a Thanos movie, Sonic the Hedgehog lends itself as more of a Doctor Robotnik movie and it just works.

The Bad:

This is more of a nitpick as the story starts pretty fast and doesn’t give much explanation as to the origin of Sonic, his powers, or the world he inhabits. I was initially curious about how his powers work and that’s a question that’s not answered in this film.

The supporting characters don’t keep up with Carrey and Marsden and although its a nitpick it’s noticeable when Tika Sumpter just isn’t on the same level. I love here in other movies but this one was a missed opportunity as I think the other actors have found a new tent-pole for them moving forward.

Overall:

great movie for both adults and kids. Jim Carrey is hilarious. Sean Mardsen is great throughout the movie and deserves a lot of credit for making this fun. There are winks and nods to the games throughout the movie that makes me interested in a sequel. Heck, I think Sega missed an opportunity here by not releasing a new game to tie in with the movie. I definitely want more of this character and can, thankfully, replay the older games that are available in the app store.

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  • 9/10

    Acting – 9/10

  • 9/10

    Cinematography – 9/10

  • 7/10

    Plot/Screenplay – 7/10

  • 8/10

    Setting/Theme – 8/10

  • 9/10

    Buyability – 9/10

  • 7/10

    Recyclability – 7/10

8.2/10
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