A speedy blue hedgehog from another world comes to hide on Earth, until an evil genius discovers him.
The story begins when Sonic (Ben Schwartz) is sent away from his world to Earth by his guardian so that he might be able to stay safe from those who saw his power and wished to use it for themselves. As he arrives in Green Hills, Montana, he takes his guardian’s advice to hide very seriously. He comes to know the townspeople, but they don’t know he exists. That is, until his frustrations and loneliness unleash a power that even the government notices.
Sonic suddenly finds himself on the run (quite literally) from the evil Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey), but Sonic has the help of the Green Hills sheriff, Tom Wachowski (James Marsden). As their short but meaningful journey from Montana to San Francisco unfolds, the relationship between them grows into something that Sonic has wanted for his whole life: a friendship.
In many ways, Sonic the Hedgehog does a wonderful job of staying true to the video game past of its title character, in both personality and looks. (The original trailer for the film was under intense scrutiny for the design of the fully CGI Sonic, so much so that the filmmakers redesigned him for the film’s full theatrical release.) Even our villain, Robotnik, maintains his zany (if somewhat rude and elitist) personality from the games, much of which is due to the perfect casting of Jim Carrey for the role.
Overall, this film was more of a joy than I expected, as I experienced Sonic overcome the obstacles of his own loneliness to grow into the hero and friend he desperately wanted to be. For that reason, whether families are already familiar with the characters or not, Sonic the Hedgehog will be worth the watch for all.
The Dove Take:
While this film contains a number of explosions and comically violent scenes throughout, it is a film both children and parents (especially those familiar with the characters) can enjoy.