He’s being billed as a new speed of hero. We don’t even know that that means.

kind of From the very first time we saw the initial stills of what a live action Sonic the Hedgehog movie might look like, we were appalled. We hoped the people responsible for the look of this venerated SEGA game character had simply had a bad day, or somebody posted a work-in-progress image by accident.

 

Sonic the Hedgehog is an amazing project. The first SEGA game starring the little blue hyperactive whatever-he-actually-is made his first appearance in 1991 in his own self-titled game for the SEGA Genesis, and it was a smash hit. Nobody had seen anything like it, or him. Kids and adults alike adored the little blue furball. Over the years there have been multiple games and TV shows, but to now there has never been a live action film, so it’s amazing that this film got green lit, and is going to make it all the way through production.

Now the first trailer is out, and uh – hmm.

Anyway, don’t let us push you off it just yet. Have a look, so we can at least be on the same page. This will be a good experience. Exactly why is something I’ll explain in a moment.

Over 10? You Are Not the Target Audience

If you’re reading this, you are almost certainly not in the audience demographic this film was made for. It is clearly aimed at the ten-and-under age range. What’s desperately unfortunate is that it’s possible to make a film for kids where they make at least some attempt to throw the adults a bone. Alas, there is little here for the lifelong fans, and the way the trailer portrays the film feels extremely thin, like too little jam over too much bread.

By missing every opportunity to make something at least watchable by adults as well, the creators of this new film have taken the rich legacy of Sonic the Hedgehog and squandered it down to the last gold ring.

Jim Carrey plays the nefarious Doctor Robotnik, and while he’s entertaining to watch in short bursts in a trailer, his character is basically just a more assertive Ace Ventura, Pet Detective. Carrey brings nothing new to the table with this character, and yet it’s hard to blame him for it. If you’ve never seen Jim Carrey in a movie before, though, his scenes work well enough.

James Marsden plays the human Tom Wachowski, who befriends Sonic and acts basically as his wingman for the film. There may be some depth to his performance, but if there is, we’re not seeing any hint of it in the trailer.

Movie Buff? This Film is Not Meant For You Either

The makers of Sonic the Hedgehog, the movie, are counting on you never having seen another buddy action road picture before. Unfortunately, that doesn’t describe very many of us.

There isn’t a single trope in this trailer that hasn’t been used, used some more, caution thrown to the wind and re-reused, and then finally tossed in a bathtub and drowned before being fished out to be used one more time. We saw that accidental discovery in the shed scene in E.T. the Extra Terrestrial in 1982, where the discoverer and the discoveree take turns yelling at each other in fright. We’re obviously seeing nothing new from Jim Carrey either (hurray, Jim Carrey got work, so there’s a paycheck for him at least), and Marsden comes off as a witless Ken doll with no emotional context whatsover.

The effects all appear to be clones of stuff we’ve seen in the past 20 Avengers movies. Even Sonic stopping time through his power over the Speed Force – huh. Wait, they stole that too.

If ten year olds could be let loose in movie theaters by themselves, it would hit the family demographic perfectly. Other than that, though, if you’ve seen any action movies in the past ten years, there’s nothing here for you.

Why Does His Hair Have Hair?

Everything about this movie feels small, except for the spikes of hair on Sonic’s head.

Except they’re not hair. They’re meat, with fur on them, which makes him nightmare fuel.

Unless they’re hair, in which case the art director gave Sonic’s speed-blasted hairdo a coating of short fine blue fur. Since when does hair have hair?

Your kids may want to see this film – but while the Sonic games keep coming, mostly they’re just there to bleed the franchise for cash at this point. There are no “grab the game industry by the short blue hairs” games out right now, and there haven’t been for more than a decade. Sonic the Hedgehog is still a viable franchise, but this film trailer makes the movie look like just another soulless attempt to wring a few more dollars out of a hedgehog.

The film opens November 8. It will probably appeal to the under ten crowd, but you’ll end up having to buy a ticket too if they want to see it. For that, you have our sympathy.

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