Meet Sonic the Hedgehog, the iconic video game character from the 1990s who can run at supersonic speed, outthink his enemies and wants to settle on Earth, his adopted home. With a mad scientist on his tail, the extraterrestrial cutie needs to keep on running until he checks everything on his bucket list, makes friends and above all, saves the planet. How he manages to do that is what makes his first live-action adventure something that is not to be missed. It is the perfect break in the testing times we are in because only Sonic Boom can delay our ‘Corona’ worries!
Sonic (voiced by Ben Schwartz) is an adorable Hedgehog from another world who can travel between planets with the help of his gold rings given to him by his guardian. When his bag of rings goes missing while he is on the run from the evil Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey), Sonic convinces Tom Wachowski (James Marsden) to take him across the country so that he can retrieve his stuff, and be on his way. Does Sonic the Hedgehog manage to beat the evil scientist and retrieve his stuff or does the ‘Eggman’ have his way and captures Sonic, so that he can use his super speed for his own gain, watch the film to get an answer!
From the moment the Paramount logo (with gold rings) appears on screen to the end where the mid-credit scene shocks the audience, Sonic the Hedgehog is a rollercoaster ride. In less than 100 minutes, Sonic manages to do things one can’t do in 100 hours. That’s the supersonic speed of the movie that revolves around a thrilling plot, made entertaining by breathtaking visual effects and performances that will make you nostalgic. There is Ben Schwartz who not only lent his voice for the title character but also provided his facial motion capture. James Marsden excels as the County Sheriff who agrees to help Sonic and becomes his buddy with the passage of time.
The highlight of the movie, however, was the return of Jim Carrey, the comedy actor who ruled the 1990s because of his perfect comic timings, his weird facial expressions and his antics that no one has been able to copy. He excels in the character of a mad scientist who not only talks to himself but also doesn’t let others speak. And the way he dances, well that’s something one should experience on screen as no amount of word can do justice to that! Director Jeff Fowler delivers a mature flick on debut and makes sure that the audience gets to know all there is to know about the title character. His backstory, his super speed, and above all, the baseball ground sequence all came from the video game, and if you had issues with the villain being named something other than Dr. Eggman, hold your horses. There is more to that than meets the eye, and by the time the movie ends, you will have answers to all your questions.
Sonic the Hedgehog might have nostalgic value for those who grew up in the 1990s but that was thirty years ago. Despite the high-octane action scenes and witty dialogues that seem like a tribute to the pop culture of that era, the film fails to attract teenagers who don’t know Jim Carrey or don’t give a damn about a blue extraterrestrial speedster who can run as fast as The Flash. Add Corona Virus to the equation and you get a blockbuster that manages to do well but could have done even better. In Pakistan, it was released two weeks later than America and that hit the film hard, as cinemas were closed down with three weeks of its Pakistan released. Also, the story is quite predictable although the way it has been executed is amazing, as both Ben Schwartz and James Marsden look in sync on screen.
The Verdict 3.5/5
Sonic the Hedgehog is not your average video game inspired film, because the game was too close to the heart of its fans. Not only did it elevate SEGA as the world leader in Video Games in the 1990s, it showed gamers of the time that you can have a successful game with a good backstory. The first live-action has been packaged in such a way that it reminds the older audience of how simple things were when they were growing up, and also attract the newer generation to Sonic's character. Thanks to Netflix that houses multiple Sonic the Hedgehog animated series, the character is all set to make your Quarantine fun. The film is laced with splendid action sequences, features a bromance between an animated character and a human one, and shows you how to save a planet, with quick thinking, and having fun on the way.