by Liselotte Vanophem
They always say that bad publicity is still publicity. We’re not sure that that was what director Jeff Fowler thought when he released the first teaser of Sonic the Hedgehog last year. The more he showed, the less happy fans and critics were about it. Fowler had no choice but to redesign his blue anthropomorphic hedgehog.
Now, it’s almost time to unleash the brand new Sonic onto the audience and it promises to be a lot of fun.
For those of you who don’t know it, Sonic is one of the babies of the Japanese multinational video game developer Sega. When Sonic (voiced by Ben Schwartz) needs to escape from malevolent forces who want his super-speed, he finds himself hiding on earth in a small village called Green Hills. At first, it looks like Sonic has found the perfect hiding spot. He’s living a quiet life filled with fun, entertainment and watching the people and the animals of Green Hills. One of them is sheriff Tom Wachowski (James Marsden). However, things are about to change. After accidentally causing a massive power outage, Sonic is being hunted down by the authoritarian roboticist Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey) who’s hired by the government. To escape from Robotnik, Sonic hides in Wachowski’s basement and that’s where the two meet. Their encounter will be the beginning of an unusual friendship. It takes a lot of pursuing by Sonic but Wachowski agrees to help Sonic to escape, collect his rings so he can go back to another world and stop Robotnik from world domination. Will the two new best friends succeed in their extraordinary mission?
After the negative comments and the delayed release of the movie, you might be reluctant towards seeing this movie. Let us assure you: You probably going to have a good time when watching Sonic the Hedgehog and here’s why.
The story by Patrick Casey and Josh Miller is extremely witty and humorous. The story might not be the most original one as there are many predictable moments but it still puts a smile on your face. Whether it’s because of the clever dialogues or just Sonic evaluating the recent events on his own, there’s a lot of laughter. There’s room for some adults jokes and bad language so Sonic the Hedgehog is clearly not only targeting the children.
What makes or breaks humour is the timing and the way it’s being told. Of course, to pull that off brilliantly, you need some impressive actors. Fowler certainly has those but they aren’t capable of showing us their full potential. The one who does is Schwartz as Sonic. He delivers lines perfectly and is such a treat to ‘watch’ and hear. Marsden brings his playful and charming traits to this film which makes you instantly like Wachowski. Whether it’s as the cop who wants more action in his life or as the loving husband of Maddie (Tika Sumpter) and the new friend of Sonic, Marsden is very enjoyable. The most fabulous scenes are the ones between Marsden and Schwartz. We just wished that as a cop, Marsden’s character would have a little bit more punch.
The romantic element of this movie is provided by Sumpter as the sweet and warm girlfriend who’s supporting her husband in everything he does. Sumpter and Marsden have wonderful a chemistry which gives this film a very human vibe. What a shame that Sumpter is being handled as a side character who doesn’t get the chance to shine. Carrey’s role is probably the one that’s being talked about the most and it’s understandable why. Yes, he delivers some entertaining and dark moments but it just feels a little bit too much over-the-top. If the makers would have toned down the excessiveness of Robotnik and give him more depth, Carrey’s performance would have been much better
Whether you are a fan of the first design Fowler released or not, you will probably like how Sonic looks now. With the redesign, the makers wanted to honour the games in the best way possible. The biggest change was “de-humanizing” Sonic by giving him a less humanlike body. Because of this decision, he now looks more like the Sonic we all know. The new Sonic sneakers are also a very nice reference to the source.
Ok, yes there are many aspects of this movie that still could have been better such as the depth of the characters, the predictability of the story and the design of Sonic himself. However, don’t let that stop you from checking out the film for yourself.
Sonic the Hedgehog is an adventure that is packed with humour, entertaining moments and cuteness.
Sonic The Hedgehog: The Movie is out on Digital, DVD, and Blu-Ray now!