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4K Ultra HD Review: Sonic the Hedgehog 2

August 24, 2022

By John Corrado

★★½ (out of 4)

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is a follow up to the hit 2020 film that brought the iconic SEGA video game character to the big screen, and it does what a sequel should do. It’s a bit bigger in scope, introduces a few new characters, and even leaves things open for a third instalment.

Like the first one, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 can’t exactly be classified as great cinema. But the CG-live action hybrid works as another fairly enjoyable family action comedy that delivers some laughs with a dash of heart, all on a slightly larger canvas than before.

Since the events of the first film, Sonic (once again voiced with hyperactive fervour by Ben Schwartz) has been living with Tom (James Marsden) and Maddie (Tika Sumpter) as their adopted “son” in Green Hills, Montana. Sonic is now very much acting like a teenager, including sneaking out at night to fight crime, determined to use his hyper-speed powers for good.

The film opens with Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey) escaping from the Mushroom Planet, where he has been living in exile for several months. He gets some inter-dimensional help from Knuckles (voiced by Idris Elba), an echidna warrior who is the last of his kind, and also has it in for Sonic. Robotnik and Knuckles team up to chase down the Master Emerald, which will give them untold powers. With Tom and Maddie in Hawaii for Rachel’s (Natasha Rothwell) wedding, it’s up to Sonic to stop them. Sonic gets his own new sidekick in Tails (voiced by Colleen O’Shaughnessey, reprising her role from the games), a two-tailed fox who has been tracking Sonic across the universe to team up with him.

The film is little overlong at a shade above two hours, and the humour is generally geared more towards kids. But Sonic the Hedgehog 2 builds on the relative promise of the first film to offer another generally pleasing diversion. Director Jeff Fowler’s direction of the action sequences is a little more confident this time around, and the film features some stronger character arcs. This includes the progression of Knuckles over the course of the film, with Elba offering a fully committed vocal performance as he embraces the character’s dimwitted brawn.

Carrey once again has fun playing the cartoony villain Dr. Robotnik, a role that is very much in his wheelhouse, with the actor’s famous rubbery antics on full display as he dons the character’s comically large moustache. All in all, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 should easily satisfy fans of the first one, while serving as a pretty good piece of all ages entertainment.

Bonus Features (4K Ultra HD):

The 4K presentation offers colours that pop, and the disc includes a number of bonus features. A code for a digital copy is also included in the package, which ships with a shiny slipcover.

Commentary by Director Jeff Fowler and the Voice of Sonic Ben Schwartz

Animated Short: Sonic Drone Home (5 minutes, 19 seconds): A fully animated short featuring Sonic, Tails and Knuckles befriending one of Robotnik’s drones.

Deleted and Extended Scenes (Play All – 17 minutes, 17 seconds): Mostly extended scenes, but some new moments as well.

Mushroom Planet Intro (3 minutes, 31 seconds)

Sonic Caught Sneaking Out (2 minutes, 42 seconds)

Getting Ready for Hawaii (1 minute, 18 seconds)

Tails Meets Wade (1 minute, 30 seconds)

Robotnik’s Fake Crowdfunding Scheme (2 minutes, 31 seconds)

Knuckles Learns the Meaning of Lying (2 minutes, 57 seconds)

Wade Discovers Robotnik’s Secret Hideout (2 minutes, 44 seconds)

Bloopers (3 minutes, 18 seconds): Your run of the mill blooper reel.

Music Video: Kid Cudi – “Stars in the Sky” (3 minutes, 6 seconds): A decent video for Kid Cudi’s solid end credits song, that mixes in some 8-bit animation.

Finding Your Team (6 minutes, 31 seconds): The cast talks about working with each other under the direction of Jeff Fowler, and their dynamics on set.

The Powerful Puncher: Knuckles (5 minutes, 43 seconds): This featurette looks at developing the character of Knuckles and Elba’s voice work, one of the best parts of the film.

Rapid Fire Responses With Ben Schwartz (3 minutes, 20 seconds): Schwartz answers a series of questions related to the film and character in this short puff piece.

Robotnik Reimagined (5 minutes, 37 seconds): A look at Carrey’s unhinged performance, with the actor talking about the enduring popularity of his onscreen work.

A Sibling for Sonic: Tails (4 minutes, 46 seconds): Looks at bringing the character of Tails (whose arrival was teased at the end of the first one) to the screen, with O’Shaughnessey talking about reprising her role as the male character.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is a Paramount Home Entertainment release. It’s 122 minutes and rated PG.

Street Date: August 9th, 2022

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