Sonic the Hedgehog had a lot of hurdles to overcome, from the fan backlash to its character design (and the subsequent production delay in response) to the general low expectations that come with video game movies. Fortunately, based on the relatively positive reception of the Sega adaptation, many fans and families will find this to be a pleasant surprise. Mostly harmless fun with a scene-stealing throwback performance from Jim Carrey, Sonic is nothing revolutionary but is hardly a prickly affair either.Here’s what critics are saying about Sonic the Hedgehog:Is it better than expected?I admit I had my reserves about Sonic the Hedgehog, but it completely blew my mind. Tessa Smith, Mama s GeekyRaise your expectations. Sonic the Hedgehog is the first cinema surprise of the year. Julian Roman, MovieWebA movie miracle or at the very least an unexpected surprise, this adaptation… largely presses all the right buttons — and even does so in the right order. Oliver Jones, ObserverAre the updated visuals worth the wait?The effects, while maintaining fidelity to the popular video game, turned out stellar. Yolanda Machado, The WrapYou know what, it works. It’s a really effective rendering of the classic character many of us grew up playing. Wenlei Ma, News.com.auNot only did the animators go above and beyond in fixing Sonic to look more like his video game origins, but they might’ve saved the movie. Dami Lee, The VergeThe filmmakers were able to get what amounts to a stuffed toy to emote more successfully than, say, the filmmakers behind last summer’s The Lion King. Oliver Jones, ObserverIn the finished film this new, cartoony Sonic might be more aesthetically pleasing, but he’s a bizarre outlier in an otherwise photorealistic world. Huw Fullerton, Radio Times(Photo by Paramount Pictures)How does it rate as a video game movie?Sonic the Hedgehog succeeds where so many other video game adaptations fail because it captures the spirit of the games and the character. Spencer Perry, ComicBook.comSonic the Hedgehog is a fairly middling family-friendly adventure movie, but a comparably good video game adaptation. A.A. Dowd, AV ClubYou might have to go all the way back to 1993’s Super Mario Bros. to find such a striking disconnect between the experience of playing something at home and watching it in a theater. David Ehrlich, IndieWireIt’s not quite Detective Pikachu, but it’s fun enough. Huw Fullerton, Radio TimesHow is Jim Carrey?Sonic offers Jim Carrey in a performance almost as full-tilt as those of his mid- 90s heyday. . John DeFore, Hollywood ReporterCarrey’s physicality and comedic timing evoke memories of his Ace Ventura and Liar Liar heyday, proving the gifted comedian hasn’t lost his touch. Akeem Lawanson, IGNThis is peak Carrey, a delightfully unhinged, physical performance reminiscent of his work in Ace Ventura or The Mask. Wenlei Ma, News.com.auCarrey is the film’s most prized weapon…his vitality makes an otherwise routine endeavor worthwhile. The movie is fine, but the villain’s a delight. Bilge Ebiri, VultureHe’s far more animated than Sonic. And far too good for this. Steve Rose, Guardian(Photo by Paramount Pictures)And James Marsden?Marsden manages to mine the heartwarming moments with Sonic even if it’s ultimately not a standout turn in his career. Akeem Lawanson, IGNTo Marsden’s credit, there’s a natural camaraderie… which is impressive given that the critter was likely represented on set by a tennis ball on a stick. Jake Cole, SlantIs the movie funny?I found myself laughing out loud several times, and yes, I even shed a few tears. Tessa Smith, Mama s GeekyOne of the strengths of the film is that it s always throwing new gags and jokes at the audience, so even if one doesn t work, there s another right around the corner that arrives as quickly as Sonic himself. Spencer Perry, ComicBook.comGets away with [one fart joke], otherwise bypassing the all-too-common cheap laughs for a story that’s loaded with smart humor [and] snappy dialogue. Kristen Page-Kirby, Washington PostThe jokes are almost all uniformly awful, following a formula of some zany thing happening and a character merely describing aloud what just happened in an incredulous voice. Jake Cole, Slant(Photo by Paramount Pictures)How is the script?The script itself is very light-hearted, even with undercurrents about being an outsider and the loneliness that comes with it. Yolanda Machado, The WrapEven when grappling with potentially heavy themes like government-sponsored drone warfare and situational depression, Sonic the Hedgehog never loses its buoyant sense of storytelling. Oliver Jones, ObserverSonic the Hedgehog has a terrific script. Screenwriters Patrick Casey and Josh Miller infuse a lot of creativity into the Japanese source material. Julian Roman, MovieWebSonic the Hedgehog is frustratingly old-school in its condescension, as the filmmakers constantly hold the audience’s hand. Jake Cole, SlantWriters Patrick Casey and Josh Miller spend too much time trying to modernize Sonic… but they sacrifice so much of his character in the process. Rendy Jones, Rendy ReviewsIs it strictly for fans of the game?First and foremost for Sonic fans. If you’ve been there for the little blue fella these past 29 years… then Sonic the Hedgehog is the love letter you’re probably looking for. If you’ve never really cared for the Blue Blur, you’ll probably want to avoid this flick like one of Dr. Robotnik’s badniks. Akeem Lawanson, IGNIf you spent your afternoons collecting rings and battling Dr. Robotnik as a kid like I did, you will LOVE this movie. Tessa Smith, Mama s GeekyFans of the video games will find a host of allusions, but there’s plenty to please any moviegoer who can’t tell a Sega from a Switch. Kristen Page-Kirby, Washington Post(Photo by Paramount Pictures)Is it really family-friendly?Make no mistake, Sonic The Hedgehog is a kids’ movie, but there’s enough here for their parents so that it’s not a total slog. Wenlei Ma, News.com.auSonic is a children’s movie that recognizes it may be kids’ first introduction to the hedgehog, so it makes minimal references to the video game world he comes from. Dami Lee, The VergeSonic the Hedgehog is what a family movie should be – entertaining, delightful, a good story, fun for all ages, and packed with life lessons. Tania Lamb, Lola LambchopsFew but diehard fans and young children will be charmed by this predictable, derivative caper. Steve Rose, GuardianAny major complaints?It’s not a great sign of creative storytelling when a kids film plugs Amazon, Zillow, and Olive Garden in the span of a single scene, without a trace of irony. David Ehrlich, IndieWireI can put up with product placement that is tastefully done but if we pay for a ticket to a movie we don’t expect to constantly see advertisements especially in movies for children. Rachel Wagner, Rachel s ReviewsSonic could ve used more of the attitude that made him Sega s antithesis to Nintendo s Mario during the video game console wars. Travis Hopson, Punch Drunk CriticsTo add insult to injury, they added a sassy Black woman stereotype. Why is this present in 2020 and in a Sonic movie? Rendy Jones, Rendy ReviewsWill audiences want more?It has me beyond hyped for a sequel. Tessa Smith, Mama s GeekyHopefully Sonic the Hedgehog will get the chance to explore its world and take more risks in a followup. Molly Freeman, ScreenRantSonic the Hedgehog is in theaters on February 14.
Why would we do something so cruel as pit two of the nicest guys in Hollywood – and real-life besties – against each other? Because that’s kinda the whole idea of this show! And so it is that one-time scrappy up-and-comers and nowadays A-list superstars Matt Damon and Ben Affleck must face off, Batman-vs-Superman style, to the death. Well, until Vs. host Mark Ellis declares one the victor, at least. In this episode, the two actors duke it out over five categories – box office performance, Tomatometer and Audience Scores, most iconic moments, best characters, and a wild card round – before Ellis decides which of these apples he most likes. Will it be the man who refused to let a little thing like his Daredevil flop stop him from re-entering the superhero genre? Or the guy who gave us a new kind of super-spy in Jason Bourne… and said yes to Downsizing? Tune in to find out.On an Apple device? Follow Rotten Tomatoes on Apple News.