I could write a lengthy diatribe about the horrors of the original Sonic movie trailer and about how the internet mob mentality in the redesign of the central character without any guarantee that those complaining would actually see the finished film and make all all the animators who were subsequently laid off go to waste. That said as you’re reading film reviews on the internet you likely already know this. The question is how the finished film?
As I was watching it, I could tell there will be a deluge of of YouTube video essays coming about how the film represents the worst of corporate film culture on pretty much every level. Does it have a plot entirely reliant on tropes and clichés. Absolutely. Will some find the voice work of Ben Schwartz and the performance of Jim Carrey unbelievably irritating. Definitely. Is the product placement at points totally egregious? Yes. Does it possess two mid credits scenes that simultaneously fan service and sequel bait. Check. With all that being said… I had a good time with it.
Despite all those criticisms the film knows exactly what it’s doing. It’s a slapstick/ family road movie and on that level, I think the film succeeds. Schwartz and Carey’s performances work for this tone and it’s great to see Carry in full slapstick mode. As someone who appreciates good slapstick the film text me laughing and in a good mood throughout. It was clearly working for many of the kids and adults in the audience and doesn’t overstay its welcome at 85 minutes not including credits. It’s the type of thing that was never going to fly with critics but if you’re in the right mood for it it theirs a lot to enjoy here. I’m glad to see the film doing well at the box office not only because its a good end to the story in terms of the films legacy but also because I want more slapstick movies like this and less films like Playing With Fire (also from Paramount and notably atrocious.)
I had a good time with the Sonic movie. Regardless of all the negatives you could throw its way (and there are a lot) I think the film mostly succeeds at what it sets out to do. If you’re in the mood for a mostly well-executed slice of slapstick I encourage you to give it a go.