Cringe comedy overshadows friendship

“Sonic The Hedgehog” is a cliché but touching tale of friendship

Hannah Flores, Staff Reporter

Review (Some spoilers ahead)

A woman, a man, and an animated sonic the hedgehog stand together
Photo courtesy of Paramount
Tika Sumpter, James Marsden, and Sonic (Ben Schwartz) in SONIC THE HEDGEHOG from Paramount Pictures and Sega.

Sonic (voiced by Ben Schwartz) runs the bases of the Green Hills baseball field. It is late at night and Sonic is alone. 

Running at top speed, he hits a home run. Ecstatic about the home run, Sonic reaches to high-five his teammates. Remembering he is alone, Sonic becomes frustrated. He runs the bases once again, faster this time and the impact of his power creates an electromagnetic shock that knocks the electricity out in the entire Pacific Northwest. 

What follows is an unlikely tale of two friends who come together to save each other, and the world, from one of the most high-tech villains to date, Dr. Ivo Robotnik (Jim Carrey). Sonic is teamed up with local Green Hills sheriff, Tim Wachowski (James Mardsen). The pair road trip across the Pacific Northwest in search of Sonic’s rings. The rings, which initially led him to Earth, now are his key to leave Earth after Dr. Robotnik threatens his safety on the planet.

“Sonic the Hedgehog” is a heartwarming story of friendship. Ultimately, the film was bogged down by awkward action scenes, cringey comedic dialogue and clichés that were exasperated by the focus on the overly eccentric Dr. Robotnik.

sonic the hedgehog runs with a ring
Photo courtesy of Paramount
Sonic (Ben Schwartz) in SONIC THE HEDGEHOG from Paramount Pictures and Sega.

From the slow motion editing of the fights, to the constant breaking of the fourth wall, the film chronicles Sonic and Wachowski’s race against time and battle with Robotnik. 

The film takes a confusing turn when Robotnik becomes the focal point. The audience gets a glimpse into his scientific world as he works to uncover the source of Sonic’s power. 

Dr. Robotnik’s scenes are awkwardly placed in the film and his loud and confusing personality makes his screen time less enjoyable. One scene in particular is a complete breakaway from the plot, in which Dr. Robotnik dances around his lab. While this provides a comedic element, it takes away from the focus of the story and seems irrelevant. 

Like any classic villain, Dr. Robotnik believes all others have an inferior intellect. The film conveys his character in a generic way because his intellectual superiority is the only consistent trait he possesses throughout the film. 

sonic the hedgehog slides down a road
Photo courtesy of Paramount
Sonic (Ben Schwartz) in SONIC THE HEDGEHOG from Paramount Pictures and Sega.

Focusing again on Sonic and Wachowski’s story, it seems that when all odds are against them, their friendship is constant. Over the course of the film, the audience sees the two grow from dislike to admiration. 

Near the end of the film, the story reconnects with an earlier scene. As Sonic races through the city trying to escape Dr. Robotnik, Sonic explains to the audience that he is unsure how the story will end. 

The film’s consistent breaks to speak with the audience become repetitive and contribute to the overall cliché tone. 

In one last fight scene, Sonic and Wachowski work together to defeat Robotnik. Again, the awkward slow motion cut drags the scene on. 

At the peak of the fight, Sonic declares “this is my power and I’m not using it to run away any more, I’m using it to protect my friends,” bringing the theme of friendship full circle. Ultimately, the power of their work comes together, and Sonic and his friends are victorious. 

Although the film is cliché overall, “Sonic The Hedgehog” is a culmination of friendship, comedy and action that builds the origin story for one of video gaming’s most beloved characters.