An hour-long anime OVA starring everybody's favoriteblue hedgehog. It was originally released in Japan in 1996 (initially as the two half-hour VHS tapes Journey to Eggmanland and Sonic vs. Metal Sonic); the English dub by ADV was released on September 9, 1999, the same day that Sonic Adventure hit the shelves.Sonic and Tails are enjoying a relaxing day on the beach when they're visited by Old Man Hoot, who's carrying a message from the President of South Island: a message so urgent that Hoot doesn't notice his aircraft is on fire. After rescuing Hoot, Sonic and Tails fly off to speak with the President, only to find that he and his Cat Girl daughter Sera are being held hostage (for a given value of "hostage") by Dr. Robotnik.Oddly enough, what Robotnik wants is Sonic's help: he's been forced out of his base in Robotropolis by the evil(er) Metal Robotnik. And now, Metal Robotnik has overloaded the power generator of Robotropolis: in less than a day, the generator will explode and cause the end of Planet Freedom as we know it. Sonic distrusts the story, but he's persuaded to help out anyway.Sonic and Tails fly off to Robotropolis, breeze through the hazards in their way, and fight through Metal Robotnik himself. Along the way, they're joined by the free-roaming treasure-hunter Knuckles, who just happens to be in the area.However, when the trio finally reach the generator, they find that Sonic was right to distrust Robotnik. The story was a ruse to enable the completion of Hyper Metal Sonic: a robotic dopplegänger who not only has Sonic's speed, but Sonic's knowledge as well. A dopplegänger hell-bent on destroying the world for Dr. Robotnik...Sonic the Hedgehog is widely regarded as that rarest of rarities: a good video game movie, though the voice acting in the English dub is debatable. It only has a superficial resemblance to the events of the video games yet the plot, art, and characterization still do an excellent job of capturing the spirit of the classic games. In any case when it was made the Sonic canon had far less development to clash with. Certainly it's surprisingly well-received among the fanbase, despite having no links to anything else. It currently holds a 68% "Fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes via the RT community (no official critic reviews, however).NOTE: ADV Films released two different versions of the movie on DVD, although they are both the same dub: the original 1999 version (which edited out/censored several bits of the movie) and the 2004 version (which is completely uncut).ANOTHER NOTE: This film is not to be confused with the anime series or fourwesternanimationshows also based on the Sonic character.
Affably Evil: Robotnik. When he isn't acting up the part of hostage-taker for Sonic, he gets along pretty well with Sera and the President. One of his robot minions can be seen cleaning up the President's office.
After the End: It appears this is where Sonic and everyone lives, as seen in the desolate city (among other things) that Sonic and Robotnik fight it and the fact that there's not a lot of other people/creatures/characters aside from the ones we see.
Alternate Continuity: The OVA has it's tone, music and art style rooted directly in the original Genesis games (Sonic CD in particular) but the setting is completely different from any of the other series, and some exclusive characters pop up here, and there is no mention of the Chaos Emeralds anywhere.
Alien Sky: A planet with Saturn-like rings is visible in the sky.
Robotnik: As you both well know, Planet Freedom is made up of two separate dimensions. The outer world, the one you live in, is known as the Land of the Sky! Sonic: Tell us something we don't know! Robotnik: SHUT UP! HEED ME!
Baby Talk: Tails sounds like he has this, despite his ability to create a jet-propelled bodyboard, fly the Tornado, and modify Eggman's navigator into a signal jammer.
Bare Your Midriff: Sera during the first half of the movie shows off her middle, but not so much after she dons her dress later.
Bash Brothers: Taking the characters directly from Sonic 2 and 3 gives us Sonic and Tails, moreso that any other adaptation and even many of the games - a good amount of the movie is huge action scenes where Sonic and Tails engage in coordinated asskicking so effective only the most powerful enemies stand a chance.
Bittersweet Ending: The world is saved, but Metal Sonic (who had then formed a mental bond with Sonic) deliberately allows himself to perish in a glacial volcano. Why? Because "There is only one Sonic."
Bond Villain Stupidity: Robotnik is clearly one of those grandiose super villains who doesn't want to simply kill his foe, but first defeat him in something resembling a fair fight. Hence the scene where Robotnik, taking advantage of Sonic's and Tails' distraction, whips out a handgun and shoots Tails' wrist-radar: even though Tails' head must have been an equally clear shot.
Brilliant, but Lazy: Sonic, particularly in the opening scene, where he doesn't move a finger to help Old Man Hoot until it becomes clear that Old Man and Tails are in grave danger.
Cement Shoes: Sonic's two weaknesses are combined as he gets glued to the ground in a fissure that is filled by the rain. He's saved by Knuckles and Tails.
Chased Off into the Sunset: With the day saved, Sonic runs for the horizon. Tails and Knuckles follow, then everyone else piles into Robotnik's Eggmobile and flies after. Sonic realizes that everyone is following him, and he puts on a burst of speed before the credits roll.
Canon Discontinuity: While it was a self-contained part of the franchise to begin with, Sega has gone out of their way to pretend this film doesn't exist; they never acknowledge it in any of Sonic history documentaries, and the film has never seen a rerelease since 2004. Sega also seems to have an unexplained hatred of the film, since they have explicitly forbidden other continuities, such as the Archie Sonic comics, from making any direct references to it. note For example; In issue #100, Knuckles hat and Sara and Metal Robotnik jr. made brief cameos as an affectionate nod to the film, which earned them a hell of a dressing down by Sega. This is especially bizarre in light that the series referencing any other Sonic continuity, even the infamous Sonic Underground, is A-OK, and the fact that one track from the film, "Look-a-like" was released on the compilation album True Colors in 2009, not to mention that Sonic Team was involved with this OVA.
Curb-Stomp Battle: Sonic is almost effortlessly beaten by Metal Sonic in their first fight, and only survives because Metal Sonic loses track of him. Interstingly, their final fight was also turning into a curb stomp battle before Tails interferred, as Sonic didn't have the stamina to keep up with Metal Sonic for more than a couple of minutes. If Tails hadn't stepped in and corrupted Metal Sonic's programming, Sonic would have been killed.
Death Course: The path to Robotropolis, though Sonic and Tails make short work of it.
Sonic: I bet Robotnik purposefully picked the route with the most traps for us!
Distressed Damsel: Sera...sort of. She plays the role of hostage when Sonic's around, but she treats Robotnik like a friend the rest of the time.
(Sera and Robotnik are playing a fighting videogame. Sera loses.) Sera (hysterical): No no no no no it's not fair you always beat me every time! (abruptly regains her composure) Alright, one more! Robotnik: Just give up! We've played a hundred times! Sera (devious): I'll stop being your hostage... Robotnik: Alright, start it again.
The Ditz: Old Man Hoot didn't even realize his rocket was on fire!
Egopolis: Robotropolis, aka Eggmanland. At night, the city's lights form a picture of Robotnik's face.
The End of the World as We Know It: Two different schemes are mentioned. Metal Robotnik's exploding generator turns out to be fake, but Hyper Metal Sonic's attempt to shatter the continents is very real.
Expy: Sera is pretty much a human (except for an inexplicable tail) Amy Rose, presumably Amy herself didn't make an appearance becuase her being the president's daughter and Eggman's 'interest' didn't work quite as well, in the creator's minds anyway.
Floating Continent: Between the plethora of floating landmasses and the cloud cover, the surface of Planet Freedom is largely shrouded in darkness; hence why it's called "the Land of Darkness". This is probably also the reason that the entire population lives on the outer layer, "the Land of the Sky".
Gadgeteer Genius: Tails. He builds a hover-surfboard in his spare time, disassembles one of Robotnik's radars, and later reassembles it as a device that can track Metal Sonic: and wirelessly interfere with Metal's programming. This movie appears to be where Tails' mechanical tendencies come from, in fact.
Genre Savvy: Sonic, much more so than in the games. Not only does he know to not trust Robotnik when the doctor comes begging for help, but through most of the movie he repeatedly notes that they should be wary of Eggman. At one point he notes (probably correctly) that Robotnik most likely gave Sonic and Tails the path through the Land Of Darkness that has the most traps and enemies. Later he invokes Left for Dead to try and lure off Metal Robotnik. It doesn't work but he gets points for trying.
Knight of Cerebus: Metal Sonic. Before him most of the film played most everything humorously, Eggman barely even qualify for much a threat due to the Go Karting with Bowser above. Then Metal Sonic shows up and BOOM, we have a villain that's actually dangerous and for the most part, nothing about him is played humorously.
Left for Dead: Subverted! Metal Robotnik shoots the bridge from underneath Sonic and Tails; they grab bridge girders just out of sight and make gurgling sounds to convince Metal Robotnik that they're drowning. Just when they think he's left..."I see you! You didn't think I'd fall for a stupid trick like that, did you?"
Sonic: Thanks a lot, pal! I owe you one! Knuckles: I think we're even.
Mood Whiplash: The scene where Metal Sonic dies is really stuck in utter contrast to the previous scene, which was a comedic albeit intense action-packed battle. Heck, it sticks out in utter contrast with the rest of the film's tone and mood in general.
Panty Shot: In the climax of the movie, Metal Sonic's head gets knocked through the bottom of Robotnik's hovercraft, right underneath Sera. She accuses him of trying to look up her skirt and starts kicking him in the face.
Sera: Back, no no no! Don't look there, you pervert!
Personality Chip: Thanks to the wristwatch Tails received from Eggman that he managed to dismantle, he is able to wirelessly mess with Metal's personality programming, and this gives Sonic a crucial advantage in the fight.
Pet the Dog: After winning his first fight against Sonic, Metal Sonic tracks down Old Man Hoot and...gives him Sonic's favorite clothes.
Pilot: The film was originally released as two separate half-hour pilots in Japan, but due to Sonic's lack of popularity there the potential anime series never got off the ground. When it was dubbed, the two specials were merged together and released in the US as what we call Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie.
Surprisingly Good English: The ending song, "Look Alike", is sung (and spoken for a bit) in, for the most part, note The singer pronounces memory as "memorai" in one verse, which itself isn't entirely grammatically sound. well-pronounced and grammatically correct English.
Take My Hand: Sonic to Metal when the latter is about to sink into lava. Metal declines, saying "There is only one Sonic..." and then dissolves.
There Can Be Only One: This, rather than Robotnik's order, is Metal Sonic's real motivation for trying to kill Sonic. And ultimately, his reason for declining his Last-Second Chance after losing to Sonic.