The Community Reacts: Sonic the Hedgehog the Movie

The Community Reacts: Sonic the Hedgehog the Movie

by April 30, 2019

A lot of buzz, for better or worse

Folks, we have no shortage of takes this afternoon over the recently released Sonic movie trailer. Most are users teeing up to dunk on the movie, but speaking personally for a second here, I don’t think it looks as bad as I feared. If Sonic looked more like, y’know, Sonic, and less like a 6 year old in a home-made Halloween costume, I might actually not mind this movie so much.

But what did you have to say?

From the comments section of our own article, we have comments that run the gamut from positive to… well. Y’know. Give it up for DK Fan, who I think is right on the nose here — Ben Schwartz makes for a pretty good Sonic.

DK Fan (30 April, 2019, 09:07)
I will admit one good thing about the movie Sonic. Ben Schwartz is a pretty decent fit for the voice.

Nuzamaki90 seems to agree: tone-wise, this trailer isn’t too bad, it’s just Sonic himself that’s the biggest problem.

Nuzamaki90 (30 April, 2019, 09:56)
How in the world did they manage to get everything else right EXCEPT Sonic?

And then there’s G. Robert, who probably speaks for a growing number of Sonic fans.

G. Robert (30 April, 2019, 14:10)
I’m half blind after watching this trailer. 🙁

I’d rather see Pokemon live-action movie instead.

So far, most of the former members of Sonic Team have chosen not to weigh in on the trailer itself — most gave their thoughts back when the teaser first dropped, but so far, Naoto Ohshima, Yuji Naka, and Hirokazu Yasuhara are all silent on the matter. However, Shun Nakamura, whose work includes games like Billy Hatcher, Rhythm Thief, Sonic Forces, and Sonic 06, offered up this one-word reaction:

Twitter’s Bing translation converts this simply to the word “How!”, but dig a little deeper, and Wikipedia’s Japanese dictionary defines this word to mean: “In mainstream Japanese, this prefix is used as an intensifier. In the Kansai region, the meaning has further developed to convey more negative overtones.”

So we’re choosing to read this as something closer to an upset declaration of “WTF?!”

LittleKuriboh of Yugioh Abridged offers this rebuttal to people who are trying to look on the bright side:

Shadow Hog is ready to turn Sega’s own foreshadowing against them:

Graxer over on Sonic Retro is willing to try a strategy that I recall being popular with the live-action Super Mario Bros. movie from the 90’s.

Graxer (Posted Today, 12:41 PM)
I think it looks like it may be a decent movie… as long as I completely disassociate it with the Sonic franchise. If it was a completely new franchise and still had Jim Carey in it as the villain I think it could be a moderate success.
As it is, with the Sonic franchise behind it, it may have more people checking it out at the cinema, but it will probably have a negative effect on review scores.

GoldS on Sonic Retro is upset with the trailer’s usage of Gangsta’s Paradise, but not for the reasons you’re thinking.

GoldS (Posted Today, 01:12 PM)
I’m shocked and appalled
that they used “Gangsta’s Paradise” instead of the much more appropriate “Ghetto Cartoon”.

McAleeCh over on Sonic Retro offers up a much more thoughtful reaction, and a challenge to the community:

McAleeCh – (Posted Today, 09:35 AM)
Welp, that… that is certainly a thing. In terms of live-action video game adaptations, it’s hard to believe that this and Detective Pikachu are being released in the same year – one looks like a great, fun take on an iconic video-game franchise, while the other… not so much. I think it’s especially bizarre that after retooling the world/characters into more ‘realistic’ versions (equivalents in-name-only location-wise from what we’ve seen), they then go and use the iconic Mega Drive sound effects for spinning/ring collection as-is – while as a fan I was happy to hear them, it really jars with the entirety of the rest of their approach…!
On the subject of ‘realism’ – still not sure what the hell is going on with Sonic’s design in particular. It’s so unbalanced – they’ve given his entire body scaled-down adult human proportions (which already looks a little weird as a human that height would be proportioned differently anyway) but then left him with a giant-ass cartoony head more in line with his modern video game proportions. It’s like, if you’re going to try and make a bizarre new design which gives him human proportions, you either go all in or not at all – this weird-ass halfway approach gives some of the worst of both worlds as the design’s left top-heavy from trying to be neither one thing nor the other. Blegh. Also, I get that they wanted to give him ‘real’ shoes, but surely there’s something out there closer to the look of his iconic footwear than just… red trainers? Also, getting the feeling from the trailer this is an ‘origin story’ for Movie Sonic – presumably he’s more of a layabout/rebel and gains his sense of justice from, erm, hanging out with James Marsden’s cop character?
Jim Carrey as Robotnik looks entertaining at least – if there’s going to be one thing worth having seen this for it’ll probably be him, though honestly just that won’t be enough to get me to shell out to go and see it, particularly as current circumstances mean cinema visits are somewhat of a luxury right now. Again, not sure why it has to be an ‘origin’ for him too – surely half the point of having Robotnik in your movie is getting to see him looking like Robotnik and doing Robotnik-like things? On that note – betting that shot of him looking more recognisably Robotnik is from near the end of the movie, setting things up for an almost-certainly-never-to-be-produced sequel.
Anyway, that’s just a stream of consciousness of thoughts so far – looks about what I expected given the leaked materials we’d seen beforehand.
Taking bets on how long it’ll take for someone to model this design and make a Movie Sonic in SA:DX or Movie Sonic in Generations mod. XD

Of all people, Weird Al Yankovic couldn’t help but offer his two cents on Twitter.

Currently the voice of Sonic, Roger Craig Smith clearly has nothing to say about the trailer. He’s totally talking about someone else. Obviously. Duh.

Remember when the Sonic social media account made fun of Mighty No. 9? Somebody thought was funny, right?

People over at Sonic Stadium seem to be a little more optimistic, like GentlemanX:

GentlemanX (Posted 4/30/2019 8:54PM)
Finally got a chance to see the trailer. I’m going to take a while to decompress it, because surprisingly I didn’t out right hate it like I thought I would. It’s definitely bad and certainly nothing like Sonic, but there are moments in there I think work, though not enough to salvage it. Still, should give it a more thorough review later to be fair.
Love the poster of Sonic running up the building by the way. Don’t really like the rest of them, but that one is cool.

Dr Ryan also agrees that it’s not so bad, but is surprised at how far-reaching the hatred seems to be, going beyond merely die-hard Sonic fans:

Dr Ryan (Posted 4/30/2019 2:22PM)
I gotta say, as a defender of this movie (and I still am, it looks fun) I am genuinely surprised at the downvotes this is getting on YouTube. I thought outside of the superfans most people would just see a fun movie trailer and enjoy it. So either the general public thinks it looks shit too, or there are far more Sonic fans unhappy with this out there than I previously thought.
Either way, I have been proven wrong.
For me though it’s non-canon Sonic fun, and I am looking forward to seeing Sonic on the big screen. The design of Sonic is fucking hidious but the action sequences look cool and Jim Carrey is great. I look forward to this.
In a world where shit like Sonic Underground and ’06 exist, this is far from the worst thing to happen to this franchise lol.
For the people who think it looks shite (and I get that too), let’s hope it’s at least successful enough for Paramount to realise the potential this franchise has, and have another, more game-accurate attempt at a movie the next year.
I think it will be a fun movie though, and I’ll be there opening night with a big bag of beers and a big smile on my face!

Though it’s not all sunshine and rainbows over at SSMB:

Natie (Posted 4/30/2019 1:20PM)
Please nobody give this movie any irony money.

Others are finding cinematic parallels between Sonic and other movies.

And, as always, there are those out there dedicated to “fixing” the problem.

And then there’s… whatever this is.

See you at the theaters in November!