Grade: B … Sonic The Hedgehog delivers nostalgia for fans at a blistering 300 mph!
If you grew up in the 90s and played video games, like me, you totally recall the epic “bit wars” between the two video game console juggernauts, Sega and Nintendo. Each company had their own mascot, Sonic The Hedgehog and Mario. Nintendo’s Mario was geared toward a younger audience. Sega’s Sonic, was known for his unique snarky attitude and aimed toward a slightly older demographic. In those days, if you were a kid, you had a Super Nintendo, if you were older (or wanted to appear more mature), you had a Sega Genesis.
Marketing for the two systems was epic. Who can ever forget the slogans slamming the competitor? From “Genesis does, what Ninten-dont!” to the Genesis’ gimmick of “Blast Processing” and the ever famous “Se-gaaaa!” as Sonic would dash across your screen while the game started. Mario and Sonic were the faces of video games in the nineties and still remain icons to this day.
Mario had a shot at the silver screen years ago with the disastrous Super Mario Bros. movie back in 1993. Sonic took the smaller screen route with his tv show “Sonic the Hedgehog” voiced by Jaleel White. The show lasted two seasons and then a movie got sent directly to video in 1996.
In 2020, Sonic finally graces the silver screen in grand fashion. In “Sonic the Hedgehog,” audiences are finally able to see Sonic in all of his CGI glory. This time around Ben Schwartz voices Sonic and Jim Carrey takes on the role of Dr. Robotnik. Sonic the Hedgehog boils down to a cute story about friendship as Sonic tries to get back his magical rings. Dr. Robotnik has other plans for the blue hedgehog and the chase is on, from the fictional Green Hills, Montana to the TransAmerica building in San Francisco, California. Sonic’s rings have the ability to give him a portal to anywhere he mentions last. When Sonic runs into cop, Tom Wachowski (played by James Marsden), Sonic sees the TransAmerica building on Wachowski’s shirt and says “San Francisco” as the tranquilizer dart from Wachowski takes its toll. The portal to San Francisco opens up and Sonic drops his bag of rings into the portal.
Dr. Robotnik is working with the government to bring in Sonic for experiments. The whole movie is a cat and mouse game while Sonic naturalizes to Earth because Sonic is from a different planet. Sonic eventually makes friends with Wachowski (who was just offered a promotion in San Francisco) and the two learn from each other throughout the whole adventure.
Initially, I was quite worried about the movie. Back in April of 2019, the first trailer was released for the movie and fans freaked out over the look of Sonic. They made such a huge stink, the studio bowed to the fans and actually redid ALL of the CGI to make Sonic look more like Sonic. This caused a very expensive overhaul to take place and, of course, caused the film to get delayed from November 2019 to February of 2020.
The wait was totally worth it. The animators did a great job bringing the speedy hero to life and the filmmakers actually had a good script to work with. I was laughing during the majority of the movie because of Sonic’s antics. Jim Carrey does a great job as Dr. Robotnik. It was vintage Jim Carrey. Yeah, he does mug, but it works. Think of an evil Ace Ventura. Ben Schwartz captured Sonic’s attitude pretty well. Though I do recall Sonic being a bit more of a jerk in the video games. You gotta keep in mind that this is a kids movie!
Even though it is a kids movie, every adult was cheering in the audience as Sonic fans were very pleased with was what being presented! Sonic the Hedgehog blasts you with nostalgia and it is one of the better video game movies around. Grab your friends and get to a theater as fast as you possibly can to see Sega’s iconic mascot entertain you!!!