Sonic the Hedgehog
by George Wolf
Even before the masses were recoiling in horror at the people/feline hybrids of Cats, the early look of Sonic the Hedgehog caused such a fan uproar that the little blue speedster got a full CGI makeover.
Well, he’s here now for his (otherwise) live action debut, he looks fine, and while his film doesn’t follow in Cats memorably bad paw prints, it never finds a way to be memorable at all.
Anyone who’s followed the Sega video games of the 1990s will feel right at home, as the world-hopping Sonic (voiced by Ben Schwartz) does battle with mad scientist Dr. Robotnik aka “Eggman” (Jim Carrey).
Sonic’s been quite lonely during his uneventful time on Earth, but a helping hand from an aw-shucks small town sheriff (James Marsden) sends them both on a convoluted road trip. Sheriff Tom wants to prove himself a hero, while Sonic just wants a friend.
Cue the strings – no wait! Dr. Eggman and his robot drones are closing in! Muuuahahahaha!
Carrey sets his mugging level on stun, but really, with director Jeff Fowler keeping each actor exaggerated and a script-by-committee committed to over-explanation, it doesn’t seem as comical as it should.
Still, Sonic is harmless enough to land somewhere near the top of the dung heap that is video game film adaptations. It’s got a pop culture gag or two that lands, a mid-credits stinger that shows promise for the next chapter, and a pace that never becomes overly laborious.
So after its rough start with the fanboys, you might say Sonic avoids becoming a real…..CATS-tastrophy.
I won’t, but you might.