Sonic the Hedgehog 2 review
Here’s my Sonic the Hedgehog 2 review which stars Ben Schwartz, James Marsden, Idris Elba, Colleen O’Shaughnessey and more!
Sonic the Hedgehog returns to the big screen with bigger threats and much more at stake, not to mention a brand new ally and enemy. The film still directed by Jeff Fowler feels bigger in scope and character development while sticking to some of the stuff that worked in the first film while injecting it at the same time with new elements.
The film also runs with the theme of growth as the Wachowskis and Sonic need to grow from where we last see them. Sonic in particular needed to do some growing up as he wants to be a hero, even referencing Batman in one occasion…
Ben Schwartz continues to do a great job voicing Sonic in this picture. In fact, it feels and sounds like he upped the ante by giving more nuances to the role. Can’t really pinpoint it but there are times Sonic talks that’s vastly improved over the original film. Either way, Schwartz continues to make the character fresh and engaging to the audience.
In terms of visuals the film continues to look great. Sonic, Tails and Knuckles all look great and blends just right with their live action counterparts. You can notice differences here and there when there are actors in the scene versus when everything’s CGI but its so little. Guess they learned a lot from the first movie and applied it for the sequel.
James Marsden‘s Tom Wachowski takes a back seat in the film to give way for Sonic’s new pal Miles “Tails” Prower voiced by Colleen O’Shaughnessey. In the first film he was more of the bestfriend to Sonic, his role here evolves to become a father figure which I thought was a cool narrative decision. The same thing with Tika Sumpter‘s role for the film, easily transitioning from a big sister to more of a mother role.
I also liked how Colleen O’Shaughnessey’s role has evolved for the film and how the fans really made sure she got what she deserved. The voice actor has been lending her voice to Tails as far back as 2014 for the animated series Sonic Boom but the studio kinda wanted to downplay her involvement a bit. This generated some buzz which gave her a bigger promotion for the film’s marketing. Its another case where the studio did listened to the fans; so now hopefully fans would do their part and actually watch the movie because its worth watching with the whole family.
Idris Elba also joins this franchise as Knuckles the Echidna, the last of his kind who is out looking for the Chaos crystal and Sonic’s first rival. They got Knuckles’ character right too him being a meathead that loves to fight while at the same time being honor-bound with a touch of nobility to him. In the film though, he’s a little naive which was fun especially in scenes with him and Jim Carrey’s Dr. Robotnik.
The weakest part of the film for me would be the wedding bits featuring Natasha Rothwell and Shemar Moore. It was funny and gave the film more laughs but it was flimsy. Felt like they could have run with something else but the wedding was essential to move Tom and Maddie away from the story which gives everybody time to grow.
The strongest was the integration of things from the game like the Chaos crystal and even the whole scene with Tails flying an airplane with Sonic standing in the wings. Straight up a good nod to the fans of the game. Even the snowboarding gives me gaming goosebumps or even that big giant robot that Carrey’s Robotnik shows up in at the end.
The film is also loaded with a lot of film references one I particularly loved was the reference to the Winter Soldier when Knuckles starts snowboarding after Sonic and Tails down a snowy mountain in Siberia. Or the overt reference to Batman at the start of the movie. Made me wonder whether these films actually came out in their world or was that just a random reference.
And while it might be silly, the ending and the Sonic the Hedgehog 2 post-credit scene also moves the barometer for the film’s inevitable third chapter way up high. I’m actually afraid they may confuse more casual moviegoers with the elements they are about to dive into. Here’s to hoping the creative team are able to write it as grounded as possible because they are still doing a movie for kids and adults. Not just 30 and 40 year olds who grew up playing the Sonic games.
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 opens in theaters March 30 from Paramount Pictures Philippines!
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