Review: ‘Sonic The Hedgehog’ Speeds You Into A Good Time

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Ben Schwartz James Marsden Super Bowl Coronavirus China Jeff Fowler Paramount

Sonic the Hedgehog‘s road to the big screen has been long, bumpy and filled with loops. When the project was initially announced by Paramount Pictures, fans of the video game franchise were intrigued at the idea of having a live-action Sonic the Hedgehog movie. Then, Ben Schwartz was revealed to be the voice of Sonic with James Marsden as his human companion and things started looking pretty good. That was until the first official trailer for the movie was released and fans saw Sonic’s live-action look.

The design was pretty humanoid, with Paramount giving Sonic a set of teeth that would haunt your dentist’s nightmares. Ultimately, the fan outcry made the director and producers cave into their demands. After the trailer was released online, Sonic the Hedgehog director Jeff Fowler revealed that they would be redesigning the titular character to make him look more like his video game counterpart. However, the redesign delayed the film’s release from November 2019 to February 2020. When the first look at the redesign was revealed, it brought some fans back on board while others still had some complaints. I didn’t mind either look for Sonic and with all the negativity surrounding the movie, I just wanted to see the final product. Well, earlier this month, I finally got the chance to see the live-action Sonic The Hedgehog movie and it surprised me, to say the least.

Sonic The Hedgehog is definitively not the movie I thought it was gonna be. It focuses on some mature themes like male loneliness and how poorly the government can sometimes handle things, but it has a lot of laughs and a ton of heart. Right off the bat, I found myself feeling something that I’ve never felt with any other video game movie: enjoyment. Sonic is wholly different than any other video game movie before it because it respects its past and uses it to weave an excellent story with real-life issues. It kinda plays like an early 2000s family movie and that’s not a dig. It’s actually what I enjoyed most about Sonic.

Sonic begins with a younger version of the blue hedgehog in some danger and he’s forced to be transported to Earth and go into hiding. After several years, Sonic is pretty lonely and finds himself isolated from the human race. This causes some major frustration for Sonic and it unlocks a power within that notifies the government of his existence prompting them to hire some outside help from Jim Carrey’s Doctor Robotnik. Due to this, Sonic ends up needing the protection of James Marsden’s Tom Wachowski and they end up on a wild road trip to San Francisco to escape from the clutches of the evil Robotnik.

The Sonic cast features some fun performances all around, but the best one comes from Ben Schwartz. Schwartz voices Sonic and he does so with a range of emotion that makes the character feel human. Sonic has been cut off from society and all he really wants is to be a normal kid and have friends. Schwartz’s voice is charming and passes as Sonic. Then there’s James Marsden, who plays Sheriff Tom Wachowski, a man that’s about to make a big change in his life until he ends up on a wild adventure with Sonic. I don’t think anyone else could have played Wachowski better than Marsden. He makes you believe Sonic is real and should definitely keep doing these kinds of movies.

Meanwhile, Jim Carrey plays the villainous Doctor Robotnik and he brings back his wonky persona from the late ’90s/2000s. Carrey is wild, insane and clearly having a great time playing this role. I enjoyed seeing him in the role and am certainly looking forward to him returning  as Robotnik in a potential sequel. The rest of the supporting cast features Tika Sumpter, Natasha Rothwell, Lee Majdoub and Adam Palley and they’re all hilarious. Even though they don’t get as much screen time as the big three, every time you see them you know it’s going to be hysterical. With its fun cast and performances, Sonic The Hedgehog delivers the goods. In my opinion, Sonic is easily the best video game movie of all time and I’m dying to see what the people behind the movie do with the blue hedgehog next.

Overall Thoughts: I loved Sonic the Hedgehog. The movie is loads of fun and has a ton of heart. It’s also easily the best video game movie ever made. The performances are a blast and the movie has an ensemble that meshes perfectly together. Jim Carrey brings back his late ’90s quirkinesses as Doctor Robotnik and you can tell that he’s having the time of his life. You gotta go fast to see Sonic The Hedgehog in theaters and take the entire family with you.

P.S. Stay for the two post-credits scenes!

Rating: 8/10

Nathaniel Brail

Nathaniel Brail

Running things at HH. Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @NateBrail