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  • Adam PallyBen Schwartz...
  • Action & AdventureFamily
  • Jeff Fowler
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Yasmeen Mamdouh
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Sonic the Hedgehog: Tampering with Memories?‎

Featured images: courtesy of Paramount – © 2019 Paramount Pictures and Sega of America, Inc.

Rehashing people’s fond memories can be very risky. Which is why creating a feature about an all-time favourite childhood character is hard to do without messing up. The bright side is you can appeal to a new generation that doesn’t know any better, but it can never escape the old audience’s scrutiny.

Sonic the Hedgehog follows blue hedgehog, Sonic (Ben Schwartz), as he teams up with small-town Sheriff Tom Wachowski (James Marsden) as they try to escape from the evil Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey), who’s out to get Sonic to use his powers for evil.

There was a lot of controversy over the design of the Sonic character. Fans objected to the feature’s initial humanised design so fiercely that it was altered to resemble the good ol’ 2d sonic.

For a loved character, the plot is basic and stiff. Clichéd and forced, the events seem to be a collection of snippets from the Sonic series, movie and games. Even the comedy aspect is too restrained to get any real laughter, and again, relying on run-of-the-mill situational comedy, which made this live-action version of Sonic forgettable. Another annoying aspect is Sonic’s voice, which sounds like a squeaky little kid who just won’t shut up, instead of the more mature depiction of the Sonic that most fans know and love.

The only redeeming feature of Sonic the Hedgehog is its ability to highlight Sonic’s powers and speed in a plausible way. 

For the acting, Ben Schwartz’s voice performance is enthusiastic, yet the tone was negatively squeaky. James Marsden gave a mediocre performance; the audience couldn’t sympathise with his character, or relate to the superficial personal struggles he faces. Marsden’s performance was not able to stand out as the buddy that Sonic always wanted, needed, or deserved. Jim Carrey’s performance was over the top, which is expected from the actor, but the writing could have helped his performance resonate more with audiences.

Sonic the Hedgehog fans may be interested in watching this new live-action feature. However, it is likely that, despite receiving the design changes they wanted, they will still be disappointed.


Like This? Try

Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie (1996), Pokémon Detective Pikachu (2019), and Spies in Disguise (2019).

360 Tip

What attracted Jim Carrey to this project more than anything else was his daughter was a big fan of the Sonic the Hedgehog games growing up.

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