Richard joins the NewsTalk 1010 afternoon show The Rush for Booze and Reviews! Today we talk about “Ambulance,” the video game flick “Sonic the Hedgehog 2” and Johnny Depp in “Minamata.” Then we take a sip of the Japanese favourite cocktail the Ginza Mary,.
Richard joins NewsTalk 1010 host David Cooper on the coast-to-coast-to-coast late night “Showgram” to play the game “Did Richard Crouse Like This?” This week we talk about the frenetic Beyhem (look it up) of “Ambulance,” the video game flick “Sonic the Hedgehog 2” and Johnny Depp in “Minamata.”
Bright-blue extraterrestrial hedgehog Sonic comes bounding back into theatres with the imaginatively titled “Sonic the Hedgehog 2,” a Sega sequel to the highest-grossing video game movie of all-time.
At the beginning of the flick Sonic (voiced by Ben Schwartz), a hedgehog whose lightning-fast reflexes and ability to run faster than the speed of sound, have helped him save the world on numerous occasions, is living with his adopted “parents,” Montana police officer Tom (James Marsden) and his veterinarian wife Maddie (Tika Sumpter).
When Tom and Maddie go on a Hawaiian vacation, Sonic is left to his own devices. That opens the door for the hedgehog’s nemesis, baddie Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey) to return with anteater sidekick Knuckles (voice of Idris Elba). Robotnik is still sore from his exile on a remote planet, but has returned with a thirst to exact revenge on the spiny blue mammal who put him there and a plan to take over the world.
“Since I’ve been gone,” he says, “I’ve discovered the source of ultimate power.”
That power stems from a mystical emerald with the power to destroy civilizations. To save the world Sonic teams with Tails (voiced by Colleen O’Shaughnessey), a yellow fox with two tails who appears through a magic portal.
Sonic’s plan to make sure Robotnik doesn’t destroy the world? “Step one, light taunting,” he says. “Step two? I have no idea.”
Plan or no plan, Sonic’s tenacity could save the day.
Story wise “Sonic the Hedgehog 2” is about as imaginative as its title. A standard save-the-world video game story with an unusual amount of CGI, it doesn’t pave any new paths forward, but fun performances—both live and CGI—keep things buoyant for most of the slightly too long two-hour running time.
Sonic is the star, the heart and soul of the franchise, but it is Jim Carrey who steals the show with a performance that goes over-the-top in search of a new top. It’s big cartoony work that brings an organic touch to an overload of computer-generated animation.
More understated, but just by a hair, is Natasha Rothwell as Maddie’s sister Rachel. She brings the funny and brings some respite to the non-stop blur of action.
“Sonic the Hedgehog 2” is a family film for video game fans, comprised of a series of big, loud set pieces banged together to entertain the eye while sprouting messages of the importance of family and teamwork.