Sonic The Hedgehog is making his way to the big screen in his first live-action movie ever with director Jeff Flower at the helm. Yet, from the perspective of a fan who's adored the franchise since he picked up a controller, the first glimpse of the blue blur's new movie is unpleasant.
We've been waiting for details regarding this movie for months, and finally, it's here. The trailer starts with Sonic, who somehow has access to a boom-box and a tape with Coolio's 1995 hit "Gangsta's Paradise." We finally get a glimpse of how Sonic will move as he limbers up before a run, and then we're hit with a wall of action and comedy. On its own, that doesn't sound like a terrible movie — from the few minutes we got, it seems to follow the modern Hollywood blockbuster rhythm, so we'll probably get something inoffensive. That's not the problem, however. Sonic The Hedgehog, for better or worse, has decades of material that fans have gobbled up, and for those of us who did, it's hard to get behind this movie 100 percent.
We've known how weird and chunky Sonic would be for a while, giving us some time to come to grips with the fact that the movie's creators aren't looking for fidelity when it comes to the long-running video game juggernaut. Yet, that lack of care for the source material is what makes this trailer so frustrating. Sonic's appearance aside, his entire personality has been altered. While this was only a two-minute trailer, Sonic's attitude is completely gone. Sure, his edge has been smoothed out more and more over the years, but the underlying rebel from 1991 has always been there in some form. Instead, we're treated to some awkward comedy caused by what looks to be situational unawareness on our hero's part — which is fine, it worked quite well, it's just not what we're used to with our favorite hedgehog.
Then there's Dr. Robotnik. Don't call him Eggman, because there's not an ounce of chub on Jim Carrey. Of all the redesigns, this is the most frustrating. Gone are the grand gestures, trapped woodland creatures in robots, and, well, egg-shaped body. Instead, we have Jim Carrey playing himself. There was a glimpse at the end revealing a more true-to-material look, but without a full-body shot, we're going to stay mad about this. Make him fat, you cowards!
OK, let's calm down for a second and look at this logically. Isolated from everything we know and love about we're sure this could be a fun movie. The comedic timing seems there, and let's be real here, this isn't a franchise known for its storytelling. In fact, it will be very hard for this movie to be the worst thing involving Sonic. Actually, when we think about it, he's is at his best when there's next to no story. So, perhaps shredding the blueprint is required to make this movie a hit. Yet, from a long-time fan's perspective, it's hard to not gaze longingly at the trailer for Detective Pikachu, which looks like Fan-Service: The Movie. The character designs were perfect, and the world itself was a spitting image of the anime and games we grew up adoring. We just wish Sonic The Hedgehog could get the same love here.
Hopefully, that last shot of Dr. Robotnik is a way to let fans know there is more to this movie than we're seeing up front. If that's the case, there's a real chance that those of us who've been following the blue blur from the Genesis to the comic books, to the cartoons could enjoy this movie. But until we're given something more, it's probably best to disassociate the property from the movie altogether.