A casual Sonic fan’s perspective of the new Sonic movie

Photo+courtesy+of+Paramount+Pictures

Photo courtesy of Paramount Pictures

Max Kim, Contributing Writer

This review has minor spoilers. If you wish to avoid them, scroll all the way down to the verdict.

Allow me to say something many would find debatable. Sonic the Hedgehog is the best video game movie to have come out of Hollywood since Mortal Kombat in 1995.

For those unfamiliar, Sonic was that guy (or rather, hedgehog) who rivaled Mario for a decade and two. Of course, recent titles are horrible messes (e.g. Sonic Forces) but his fanbase is only getting bigger, to the point where they actually affected the release date of this movie.

Now, does that mean most of you should watch it no matter what? Not really. But before I tell you why, allow me to focus on the many pros of this movie, starting with the title character.

Ben Schwartz’s Sonic is the best talking Sonic to have graced the screen, big or small, and that’s a fact. Fans of Jason Griffith better be scared, because another voice actor is taking the top spot. I mean, he sounds just like Sonic’s Japanese Voice Actor but in English. I hope Sega has enough money to pay him a lifelong contract, because Sonic fans are due for another replacement; Roger Craig Smith’s showed more than enough that he’s only fit for the dry and sarcastic Boom Sonic, not the energetic Sonic that Drummond and Griffith introduced.

We can’t talk about Sonic without Eggman (or as some people call him, Dr. Robotnik) either. Jim Carrey puts Mike Pollock’s Eggman of the games to shame, although that’s quite expected. His character starts off only mildly mad, before slowly but surely morphing into the standard 90s Jim Carrey madness as the movie goes on. If you enjoyed any of Jim Carrey’s early films, then this is a film for you, regardless of the blue fluffy thing in it.

Sadly, other than that and a bunch of Sonic references, there’s not much to see. The story can be done with literally any other video game or cartoon character and not change much, because it’s just another “alien goes to earth and scientist chases them” movie (yes, Sonic is an alien in this movie). Overall, it felt like it was building up a larger franchise that was hidden, given the quick glances at things one would think deserve more screen time, such as Sonic’s feathery foster mom (I wish I was joking), a tribe of echidnas (another spiky real world creature featured in the Sonic Games), and all the other planets/zones briefly mentioned and never brought up again.

I would’ve considered that as insulting as when Dr. Jekyl appeared for no reason in 2016’s The Mummy, but the difference is that Sonic’s universe actually has substance and was introduced correctly compared to the “Dark Universe”; the appearance of more than one echidna makes Sonic fans interested in whether the rise of Chaos will be a story in a sequel, while casual viewers will wonder when Knuckles will show up. The mid credits scene all but confirms a sequel, masterfully making every audience excited to see what’s to come.

Verdict: This movie is optional, the sequel is a must.