Saturday, March 2, 2024
HomeReviewsFilm Review: 'Sonic the Hedgehog 2' Recaptures the Franchise's Stunning Visuals, Family...

Film Review: ‘Sonic the Hedgehog 2’ Recaptures the Franchise’s Stunning Visuals, Family Humor and Sentimental Life Lessons

Repeating their previously successful actions and collaborations is proving to be prosperous for Paramount Pictures’ hit film adaptation series of the popular Sega game, Sonic the Hedgehog. The studio reunited with the 2020 movie’s director, Jeff Fowler, and writers, Pat Casey and Josh Miller, and and brought on new franchise scribe John Whittington to create the upcoming sequel, Sonic the Hedgehog 2.

The second installment in the film series perfectly captures the visual and thematic magic that helped make the original feature so engaging and resonate with the games’ fans. Once again blending comedic live-action sequences with thrilling animated characters and pulsating CGI special effects, the new action-adventure comedy proves that Sonic has the staying power to save his environment – the video game movie adaptation genre.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 picks up some time after the events of its predecessor. The titular character (voiced by Ben Schwartz) is settling in with Tom (James Marsden) and his wife, Maddie Wachowski (Tika Sumpter) at their home in the town of Green Hills. Despite his happiness with his new family, Sonic is still accustomed to the faster-paced lifestyle he acquired during his intergalactic travels. As a result, he begins sneaking out of the house late at night in search of adventure, much to Tom’s dismay and concern.

After Sonic embarks on a high-speed chase and engages in very poor judgment while trying to save the residents of Seattle from bank robbers, Tom warns the hedgehog that he still has some growing up to do before he can truly become a full-fledged hero. But Sonic disregards Tom’s warning to some degree when he and Maddie travel to Hawaii for the wedding of her her older sister, Rachel (Natasha Rothwell).

Meanwhile, Sonic’s enemy, Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey) is able to return to Earth after the hedgehog banished him to the Mushroom Planet at the end of the first film with the help of the belligerent Knuckles (voice of Idris Elba). The anthropomorphic red echidna warrior, who possesses even greater super-strength than Sonic, forms an alliance with Dr. Robotnik. The duo returns to Earth in search of the Master Emerald, a gem with the potential to control the entire universe, which they hope to use to stop Sonic once and for all, for their own personal reasons.

In his ensuing fight against both Dr. Robotnik and Knuckles, Sonic elicits help from a new ally, Tails (voiced by Colleen O’Shaughnessey). The anthropomorphic yellow fox with two tails idolizes Sonic so much that he’s readily to help him locate the Master Emerald and stop Dr. Robotnik from exploiting ot to satisfy his own power lust. Along the way, Sonic not only learns the true responsibility of being a hero, but also the authentic meaning of genuine friendship.

Like the original movie, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is a visually stunning action-adventure family comedy geared towards both Millennials who appreciated the franchise’s video games during their childhoods and their young children who are just being introduced to the series. The upcoming follow-up perfectly intertwines enthralling physical comedy and stunts with jokes and messages the whole family will appreciate, which are all set in captivating locations.

Carrey once again brought his signature maniacal physicality that helped launch his film career during the 1990s, when the series’ video games were first released, to his portrayal of the films’ returning diabolical villain. From his introduction to Knuckles on the Mushroom Planet, where he energetically falls over himself while using his gadgets to transport them to Earth, to when they’re pursuing Sonic and Tails during a high-speed car chase after they arrive in Green Hills, Dr. Robotnik’s physical comedy humorously lightens his dubious scheme.

The action-adventure sequel’s electrifying physical comedy, which was crafted under the guidance of stunt coordinator Marny Eng, perfectly fits into the project’s set designs, which were created by the team of production designer Luke Freeborn. Sonic and Tails fearlessly fight back against Dr. Robotnik and Knuckles in such enthralling, distinct locations as the quiet streets of Green Hills surrounding Tom and Maddie’s home and a snowy Serbian mountain range.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 also fully embraces continuing the important message from the franchise’s first movie, which Tom motivatingly instills in the eponymous character early in the story. After Sonic’s careless attempt to save Seattle from the bank robbers, Tom reminds him that he still has some growing up to do before he can find his purpose, which turns out to be stopping Dr. Robotnik and Knuckles from finding and using the Master Emerald.

Fowler was able to recapture the stunning visuals, comedy and sentimental and important life lessons that he included in Sonic the Hedgehog in its new captivating sequel. The franchise’s second installment is once again led by Carrey’s signature physical comedy as Dr. Robotnik, as he villainously teams up with Knuckles to pursue both the Master Emerald and the titular hero and Tails. Intertwined with Sonic taking Tom’s important reminder that he needs to find a meaningful purpose for his power as he saves the world to heart, the follow-up is another stellar entry in the series.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 will be released in theaters by Paramount Pictures this Friday, April 8, 2022. 

Grade: B

Check out more of Karen Benardello’s articles.

Here’s the trailer of the film.

Karen Benardello
Karen Benardello
As a life-long fan of films and television shows, and an endless passion for writing, Karen Benardello decided to combine the two for a career. She graduated from New York's LIU Post with a B.F.A in Journalism, Print and Electronic in 2008. Karen has since been working in the press in New York City, including interviewing film and television casts and crews, writing movie and television news articles and reviewing films and televisions series. Some of her highlights include attending such local events as the Tribeca Film Festival, the New York Film Festival and New York Comic-Con, as well as traveling across North America to attend such festivals as the Sundance Film Festival, SXSW and the Toronto International Film Festival. She has been a member of the Women Film Critics Circle since 2012, and the New York Film Critics Online since 2019.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisment -

Most Popular

Recent Comments