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"So, I know what you're thinking; 'why is that incredibly handsome hedgehog being chased by a madman with a mustache from the Civil War?' Well, to be honest, it feels like I've been running my whole life. Is this too much? Am I going too fast? It's kinda what I do. You know what? Let's back up. (mimics reverse audio)"
Sonic
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After 29 long years, Sega's Mascot with Attitude speeds his way into theaters in this theatrical debut for the eponymous video game franchise.

A co-production of Sega and Paramount Pictures, this film is directed by Jeff Fowler in his directorial debut and produced by The Fast and the Furious' Neal Moritz in the latter's first film with Paramount after leaving Sony Pictures (This film's original studio). Tim Miller also serves as executive producer. The film's animation services and visual effects are provided by Sega's Marza Animation Planet studio and Miller's Blur Studio, the latter of whom have collaborated with Sega on a couple of Sonic the Hedgehog video games, namely Shadow the Hedgehog and Sonic the Hedgehog (2006), with assistance from Moving Picture Company, Trixter Studio, and Digital Domain.

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Sonic (voiced by Ben Schwartz), an alien constantly hunted down on his own world because of his special powers, escapes to planet Earth with his special rings and stumbles upon the small town of Green Hills, Montana, where he's spent over a decade in hiding. After Sonic inadvertently causes an EMP blast that knocks out power across the Pacific Northwest, the military hires a Mad Scientist, Dr. Ivo “Eggman” Robotnik, (Jim Carrey) to track down the source of the disruption. Upon discovering Sonic's immense power, Robotnik will stop at nothing to capture and dissect him to find out its source. The town's sheriff, Tom Wachowski (James Marsden), who aspires to move to San Francisco for a top police job there, reluctantly agrees to help Sonic find his lost rings to escape the planet. But with Robotnik and the military after him, time is of the essence and both Sonic and Tom need to retrieve the rings before Robotnik catches up to them.

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A couple attempts were made back in The Nineties to bring the property into the silver screen, but never came to fruition. It wasn't until 2013 when Sony acquired the film rights to the franchise and began production on the feature-length live-action/CGI hybrid film. However, thanks to the executive shakeup following the studio's devastating cyberattack, the new leadership had little interest in the film, and after a financing partner backed out of its deal with Sony, the studio shut down production in the summer of 2017 and placed it in turnaround, forcing Moritz to shop the movie elsewhere. When Moritz moved his first-look production deal from Sony to Paramount around that same time frame, Paramount showed interest in the movie and acquired the rights from Sony, finally getting production off the ground.

The film was originally set for release in November 2019, but was later delayed to February 2020 to overhaul the CGI on Sonic. The redesign was developed by Sonic Mega Drive illustrator Tyson Hesse.

A sequel was confirmed in May 2020, with Moritz, Miller, Fowler, writers Pat Casey and Josh Miller (no relation to Tim), and Schwartz all currently confirmed to return. It is currently scheduled to release on April 8, 2022.

For the other Sonic movienote , see Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie. If you're looking for the Fan Film, see Sonic.

Previews: Trailer 1 (with the original design), Trailer 2 (with the revised design)


Gotta Trope Fast!

  • 11th-Hour Superpower: Downplayed. During the movie, Sonic regularly demonstrates a "power" which manifests as some form of Blue Lightning that appears to allow him to move faster, deal far more damage to objects he spindashes into, and destroy any electrical devices nearby. This power only manifests when Sonic is showing some form of negative emotion (in particular stress/anger) and he doesn't use it when running from Robotnik during the final chase. However, when Tom stands up against Robotnik and states Sonic was his friend, Sonic suddenly erupts with this electrical energy and is able to actually harness it for the final battle which both overloads Robotnik's flying machine (which is using one of Sonic's quills) and allows him to deal serious damage to it.
  • Absurdly Ineffective Barricade: Tom accidentally tranquilizes Sonic and, while figuring out what he is, locks him in a dog kennel. With his back turned, Sonic wakes up and casually unlatches the kennel, since he has the dexterity.
  • Action Prologue: The movie opens up with Dr. Robotnik in the middle of a mad pursuit of the Blue Blur himself, launching explosive after explosive in several attempts to hit him. Then the scene freezes mid-sequence, and a narrating Sonic proceeds to rewind all the way back to his childhood to show how things got to this point.
  • Adaptational Angst Upgrade:
    • Dr. Robotnik reveals to one cop that he grew up in an orphanage where he was bullied as a child. In the games, his past is left vague but is implied he had parents, as he at least had a grandfather.
    • Downplayed with Sonic. In the games, he is frequently portrayed as being a fairly popular figure, beloved by the little animals he rescues, always with a large group of friends and a boundless source of confidence. Here, he spent ten years of his childhood in almost total social isolation, and desperate for companionship, even though he masks that with his usual snarky attitude and playful charisma. Not to mention that, at least in the videogames, he has no backstory to speak of.
  • Adaptational Context Change:
    • In the games, Dr. Ivo Robotnik is nicknamed "Dr. Eggman" based on his cartoony oval shaped body. In the film, the "Eggman" nickname is instead derived from his flying drones which are ovoid and white.
    • The Novelization makes a couple of changes from the film:
      • Although they're never named in dialogue, a label in his mobile-lab confirms that like in the games, Dr. Robotnik's has named his robots "Badniks". In the novelization, Dr. Robotnik has named his robots "Botniks", and it's Sonic who nicknames them "Badniks".
      • In the film, Sonic mockingly calls Robotnik "Eggman", as a reference to his moniker in the videogames. In the novelization, this is absent, instead Sonic calls Robotnik "Robuttnik", the same derogatory nickname used in Sonic the Hedgehog (SatAM) and Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog.
  • Adaptational Superpower Change:
  • Adaptational Villainy: Pachacamac, who is normally neutral in most Sonic media, is depicted as a villain in the movie's opening scene, leading the Echidna Tribe's hunt for Sonic (to use his powers for some nefarious purpose) and attacking Longclaw.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job:
    • Rather than the peach-colored arms he has in the games, Sonic instead has blue arms like his Sonic Boom counterpart.
    • Dr. Robotnik:
      • Played With in regards to his hair color. In the games, his hair has varied in color between orange, auburn red, and dark brown. Here, Robotnik starts out with a full head of dark brown hair and mustache, then in the stinger he's shaving his hair off to be bald and has gained a more reddish mustache.
      • In the games, the few times Robotnik has been shown with his goggles off he’s had blue eyes. Here Robotnik has Jim Carrey's brown eyes.
    • Downplayed with Tails. He looks very much like he does in the games, but his fur is a more vibrant shade of orange (much like he had in the older games) compared to the more yellow fur he has in 3D Sonic games.
  • Adaptation Expansion:
    • The film touches on Sonic's backstory, something that is unexplored in the games and which Sega usually forbids in licensed material (such as the post-reboot Archie comics, the IDW comics, and the game that became "The Rise of Lyric") as one of their mandates. He was raised as a child by a motherly owl named Longclaw, who sacrificed herself to protect him from a hostile tribe of echidnas who wanted to harness his powers for likely evil purposes.
    • To a greater extent, the entire film shows Dr. Robotnik's slow transformation into his video game persona, evolving from a dapper scientist enlisted by the government to the crazy, dishevelled madman that we all know and love. In the games, his background is completely unknown beyond his grandfather inspiring him to become a scientist, but in the movie he is an orphan.
  • Age Lift:
    • In the games, Sonic is 15. According to director Jeff Fowler, this film’s version of Sonic is either 13 or 14.
    • In the games, Pachacamac lived 4000 years before Sonic was born. Here, he's alive when Sonic was a toddler.
  • Alien Sky: We catch a brief glimpse of the Mushroom World's sky as Robotnik is stranded on it, which appears to have an enormous eclipsing sun and moon. The planet also appears to receive an abnormally heavy amount of sunshine.
  • All There in the Manual: The junior novelization expands on Longclaw's character and what the echidnas want, and includes an extended scene of Sonic and Longclaw before he finds his way to Earth.
  • All There in the Script:
    • Dr. Robotnik's first name is never said in the movie, but a Nickelodeon TV Spot suggests that it's still Ivo like in the games.
    • Although Robotnik's hoverjet is never named on-screen, concept art and the modelling schematics for the CGI rendering call it The Eggpod.
  • Alternate Continuity: The film is a completely new origin story for Sonic, separate from all previous continuities.
  • American Kirby Is Hardcore:
    • invoked Promotional media for international markets focus on Sonic as a teenager (as he appears for most of the franchise) and primarily center on the action scenes and comedy bits. Japanese promos for the film (including promotional posters, meanwhile, focus on the younger "baby" version of Sonic who appears at the start of the movie, and play up his moe appeal for all it's worth. In fact, baby Sonic's first appearance anywhere was in a Japanese TV spot for the movie.
    • Inverted with one American movie poster showing Sonic smiling at the camera, with Robotnik's face in the background. The Japanese movie poster has Sonic looking determined at the camera, with Robotnik's ship looming behind him. The Japanese poster also has more missiles firing at Sonic than the American poster.
  • And Starring: The cast roll ends with "and Jim Carrey" in front of Robotnik's logo.
  • Angst Nuke: After Sonic wins a game of baseball he played with himself and realizes that no one is there to cheer for him, the feelings of loneliness he has been harboring for the past 10 years reached its peak as he runs around the bases so much and so fast that he digs a trench around the diamond. But the real explosion happens when his electric powers start to go crazy as his face slowly morphs from tear-stricken sadness to frustration and then into rage as he jumps up and lets out an anguished scream that unleashes all of the electricity his body generated, which knocks out all the electricity not only in Green Hills, but across the entire Pacific Northwest coast, including a satellite in orbit.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Rachel, Maddie's sister, faints at the sight of the unconscious Sonic, then later tries to convince Maddie that Tom has gone crazy because he's talking about aliens, despite the obvious alien in her house.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Rachel confronts Tom upon hearing he's wanted by the government, threatening to call the FBI, the CIA and his mother.
  • Art Evolution: The first trailer had a radically different design for Sonic, given a more "realistic" look that was poorly received (smaller eyes, human-like body musculature, highly detailed fur, furry white hands). Shortly afterwards it was announced they would redesign Sonic entirely, and the second trailer introduced a new look for the movie that is almost directly taken from the modern games (bigger eyes, longer legs, muted fur detailing, White Gloves).
  • The Artifact:
    • There's a brief bit where something sticky gets stuck to Sonic's glove. No-one thinks of just taking the glove off, suggesting it's a remnant from the time his design was still bare-handed.
    • Compared to the stylized, game-accurate designs of Sonic, the Echidnas, and Tails, Longclaw looks like a realistic owl, suggesting that this design was meant to coincide with Sonic's original look.
  • Artistic License – Geography: When Sonic and Robotnik arrive in Egypt near the Giza pyramids, there's nothing but desert visible in all directions. The pyramids and the Sphinx are actually surrounded by roads, numerous other monuments, and city on three sides. In fact, there's a KFC/Pizza Hut combination restaurant less than 1000 feet from the Sphinx itself.
  • Ascended Meme:
    • Early in the film, when Sonic is hiding from the people of Green Hills, Crazy Carl keeps trying to catch him. He draws a picture of Sonic, and the drawing happens to look exactly like Sanic Hegehog.
    • Several of Robotnik's dance moves are taken directly from the Doctor Robotnik Dance viral video.
    • Sonic says "Gotta Go Fast!" when Maddie wakes him with smelling salts, referencing the heavily memed line from the theme song of Sonic X. Later on, Jojo, Tom's niece, is seen running around the coffee table repeating the phrase ad nauseam.
  • A-Team Firing: While stopping at a Western-themed bar, Sonic and Tom get into a game of darts. Tom hits the bullseye, so Sonic tries to one-up him by throwing multiple darts at the board in rapid-fire... and none of the darts hit the board, resulting in a mess of darts on the wall, the hat of a nearby waitress (though mercifully, none hit her directly), and the canned drinks she was serving.
  • Badass Boast:
    • Sonic delivers one to Robotnik after he recovers from his Disney Death.
      Sonic: I think you have something that belongs to me.
      (Sonic proceeds to tap into his electric powers, nullifying the quill power from Robotnik's aircraft in the process)
      Sonic: This is my power. And I'm not using it to run away anymore. I'm using it to protect. My. FRIENDS.
    • Despite completely losing his mind after being stranded on the Mushroom Planet for seemingly 87 days, Dr. Robotnik makes a highly confident vow to return:
      Robotnik: Here's the sitch. Uninhabited planet. No resources. No supplies. No apparent way home. A lesser man would die here. (whips out one of Sonic's quills) I'll be home by Christmas.
  • Balloon Belly: At the end of the movie, where Dr. Robotnik is banished by Sonic to Mushroom World. Bored with nothing to do all day and all by himself, Robotnik ate up several mushrooms and gained a lot of weight, indicating that when he returns to Earth he'll be morbidly obese.
  • Bar Brawl: Tom and Sonic get in one that Sonic solves in Bullet Time. Later, he checks being involved in one off of his bucket list.
  • Behind the Black:
    • When Sonic throws one of his rings off the Transamerica Building to head to the next world. The ring collides with one of Robotnik's drones, and Sonic and crew act surprised even though it would have been straight in his field of vision.
    • When Tom and Maddie are discussing the next steps of their plan in Rachel's house. They decide to take Rachel's car since Tom's would draw too much attention. Cut to Rachel tied up in her living room, loudly protesting this decision.
  • Beta Outfit:
    • Sonic uses grungy used sneakers to run around in for most of the movie, but gets his trademark red and white sneakers later on.
    • Robotnik wears a black Badass Longcoat with some red striping for most of the movie, but puts on a more classic red "flight suit" for the climax.
  • Be the Ball:
    • When Robotnik's mini-drones are scanning Tom's attic, Sonic tries to blend in with a soccer and basketball. Right before the red scanner came in, Sonic aborted on that plan and rolled away, making a ruckus in doing so which alerted Robotnik himself.
    • Sonic's used as one in his spinball form by Tom in an in-door basketball game machine, allowing Sonic to manipulate the system into reading hundreds of hoops when he pounds on the basket.
  • Beware the Silly Ones:
    • Sonic acts like a hyperactive teenager with a correspondingly short attention span, but as seen in several scenes, when he has to deal with a serious threat, he can become crafty and downright dangerous.
    • Dr. Robotnik is silly, obnoxious and quite childish, but also a corrupt mad scientist with sinister plans, genuinely dangerous machines, and no empathy to care who ends up hurt in the crossfire of either. He even manages to nearly kill Sonic in their final fight.
  • Big Bad: Dr. Robotnik is the main antagonist of the movie. He's a government agent employed to investigate a mysterious, widespread power outage - and then takes it upon himself to track down Sonic and take the secrets of his powers, which he does with extreme prejudice, although to exploit that power for himself. Even Robotnik's nominal employers in the United States government would rather have nothing to do with him because of his reputation as a Mad Scientist, but he's the only one who can adequately investigate the incident.
  • Big Badass Rig: Doctor Robotnik's self-described "evil lair": an enormous matte-black truck that contains the launching and recharging points for his numerous Badnik drones, a highly-sophisticated laboratory with which he controls said drones and conducts the testing on Sonic's dropped quill, and even a hangar for his hoverjet.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Deputy Wade and Crazy Carl lead the residents of Green Hill to protect Tom and Sonic from Robotnik during the final battle.
  • Black Comedy Burst: Tom hides Sonic in a bag and smuggling him into a building. When someone besides him hears Sonic making noise within the bag, this exchange alluding to child abduction ensues:
    Sonic: How much longer? I can't breathe in here! ...Hellooooo? Anybody there?
    Bystander: Do you have your child in that bag?
    Tom: No. I mean, yes, it's a child, but it's not mine.
    [pause]
    Bystander 2: [disturbed] That's not your child?
    Tom: Relax, I'm a cop, okay? Plus he likes it in there, don't cha, buddy?
    Sonic: Why would I like it in here? This is worse than the dog cage you had me in earlier!
    [The bystanders stare at the bag in horror]
    Tom: He's such a kidder.
    [Maddie hastily closes the zip]
    Sonic: [muffled] No, I'm scared of the dark! Is anybody there?!
    [The bystanders start nervously edging away as Sonic is saying this]
  • Bluff the Imposter: Tom is immediately suspicious when Dr. Robotnik announces that he's from the electrical board, so states that he must know his friend who is also a killer softball player. Robotnik confirms that he does... and Tom stops him from entering because said friend works for the gas company, and is an ultimate frisbee player. Also the electric company usually checks outside the house.
  • Book Ends: The film begins and ends with a character being sent to another planet, unable to return, and going a bit crazy from the isolation. It's Sonic at the beginning, who is sent to Earth by Longclaw to keep him safe, whereas Robonik is forcibly exiled to the Mushroom Planet.
  • Brick Joke:
    • Tom mentions the only app on his phone that didn't come preinstalled is the Olive Garden app. Much later, he receives an Olive Garden gift card from Commander Walters.
    • Sonic expresses his love for the word "guac" when ordering at the bar. Guess what he says when Robotnik asks if he has any last words.
  • Bullet Time: Sonic's Super Speed allows him to practically move so fast that everything appears to stand still or move in super slow motion. He uses this ability first to save himself and Tom from irate patrons at the western-themed bar, messing around with all the participants of a Bar Brawl he accidentally started. The second time is when he pushes Tom & Maddie off the Transamerica to face Robotnik and his drones who immediately fire a Macross Missile Massacre at him and escapes them all. Unfortunately, Robotnik uses Sonic's dropped quill to enter Bullet Time himself and his jet now moves at the same speed as Sonic does.
  • Bull Seeing Red: Sonic fights with a biker at the bar as though he were a bull, even bringing in a red cape (actually a tablecloth).
  • Bullying a Dragon: Do not test Robotnik.
    • Robotnik mentions that back in his childhood, he was bullied by another male student who assaulted him and gave him a concussion to his head which left him humiliated in front of the whole school. Robotnik apparently retaliated by building a robot to strike back at the bully hard enough leaving him paralyzed for well over a year that forced the bully to get all his meals through a tube.
    • Robotnik claims that because Tom punched him in the face, he wants to do the same thing to Tom.
    • At the "Piston Pit" bar, the violent, burly biker who tried to pick a fight with Sonic is asked by Agent Stone for where he thinks Tom could've gone. The biker doesn't know, but rather than admit he doesn't know, he just insults Stone. Robotnik asks him the same question and the biker insults him too, prompting Robotnik to hurl him through a window.
  • Butt-Monkey:
    • Agent Stone's only purpose is to be the doctor's punching bag both verbally and, in at least one instance, physically.
    • Rachel spends the entire second half of the movie tied to a chair where nobody, not even her own daughter, will listen to her. Given her nasty behavior, it's hard to blame them.
  • Canon Foreigner: Pretty much everyone except Sonic, Dr. Robotnik, and the Echidna clan and Tails is a new character for the film. Special mention goes to Longclaw the giant owl, who apparently is Sonic's lifelong protector on the Green Hill-resembling island. There's never been a character like her in the games.
  • Car Hood Sliding: In one scene, Sonic performs a hood slide in slow motion while exclaiming "I've always wanted to do this!".
    Sonic: [lands the slide] Nailed it~!
  • Casual Danger Dialogue: Sonic insists on continuing the argument over Tom leaving Green Hills while under attack from one of Robotnik's drones.
  • Central Theme: The importance of having others in your life. Sonic used to live on the outside looking in, seemingly happy but really wishing he could interact with the citizens of Green Hills and he's been carrying that baggage for ten years by the time of the movie, which has started to get to him. Robotnik, on the other hand, has a resume worthy of respect yet deliberately pushes people away with his standoffish behavior and complete preference of technology over organic life, on the basis of it being more efficient and always doing exactly what it's told. The end result is Sonic is now free to live the life he always wanted, surrounded by people who care about him, while Robotnik has been banished to a planet where he can be by himself but loses his grip on reality as a result of being cut off from his technology-heavy life.
  • Chainsaw Good: Crazy Carl busts out a chainsaw to help protect Tom from Robotnik. Wade has to move it aside because Carl is standing uncomfortably close to him with it running.
  • Chekhov's Skill:
    • Sonic finds that under the right emotional stress he can generate extreme amounts of electrical power, he blows his cover with a massive EMP that alerts the military. He further catches on in a highway chase against Robotnik's drones. He masters the spinball power against Robotnik in the climax, ricocheting hundreds of times off his vehicle before shattering it completely.
    • Subverted with Maddie; she is a veterinarian and when Sonic is injured Tom expects her to figure out his biology to help him. She points out it doesn't work that way, considering she has been trained to handle regular animals and he is an anthropomorphic alien, but she uses traditional human first aid to get Sonic back on his feet.
  • Clear My Name: After escaping with Sonic following their initial confrontation with Dr. Robotnik, Tom gets framed by the scientist for causing the EMP blackout, resulting in him being branded as a terrorist forcing him to go on the lam with Sonic.
  • Clingy Aquatic Life: After being told to head west to get to San Francisco, Sonic returns to Tom's car with a fish, a starfish and some seaweed stuck to his head, having hit the Pacific Ocean.
  • Collateral Damage: Near the film's finale, after Tom insults him, Robotnik retorts by gleefully suggesting that he intends to kill both him and Maddie, referencing this trope in the process:
    "You are catching fire, Thomas. Oh, and speaking of heat, I see you've taken a lover. Does she have a name or should we just call her collateral damage?"
  • Comically Small Bribe: One of the US generals who first hired Robotnik shows up at the end of the movie to thank Tom for keeping quiet about the whole business with Robotnik and hands him an envelope that clearly contains hush money. The buildup that implies the contents are quite significant, only for it to turn out to be a $50 Olive Garden gift card.
  • Composite Character:
    • Sonic the Hedgehog has shades of this in both design and personality:
      • Following the redesign, Sonic's design has struck a balance between his Classic, Modern, and Boom designs. He has the height, larger torso, and attire from the Classic design in addition of being a little bit younger, the green eyes, darker blue fur color, and quill length of the Modern design, and the blue arms, scruffy/bushy quills, and visible neck and shoulders from his Boom design. He also maintains his general expressiveness from all three designs. Additionally, his trainers appear to be a hybrid of both his iconic Power Sneakers and the Soap Shoes from Sonic Adventure 2.
      • Personality-wise, he's mainly his Modern self: being cocky, cool, and not being one to take most things seriously, but simultaneously knowing when to step up once things truly get dangerous. However, he also likes to horse around and be silly; much like his Boom and Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog incarnations.
      • In regards to his abilities, along with his speed he also has electrical powers which are tied to his emotions, specifically his anger. The only character in the Sonic mythos who has elemental powers that are fueled by emotions is Blaze the Cat.
    • The film's version of the Rings are a composite of the Rings that players collect in the games, and the Giant Rings in the games that act as transport to the Special Zones. This has the effect of making the rings identical in appearance and function to the Warp Rings created by Doctor Finitevus in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog.
    • Longclaw being an owl who is initially the only character on Sonic’s world to be aware of Sonic’s existence, makes her a rough analogue of Sophocles an owl from Stay Sonic who was mentioned as the first one to discover Sonic. But her acting as Sonic’s mentor and Parental Substitute and being the one to give him the Power Rings is taken from Uncle Chuck from Sonic the Hedgehog (SatAM). She is also a mother figure to Sonic that has to abandoned him at a young age from a greater threat much like Queen Aleena from Sonic Underground.
    • Dr. Robotnik:
    • Dr. Robotnik's Eggpod has a lot of elements from vehicles of past Sonic games.
      • The wings and the way it flies at Sonic bears a resemblance to the Egg Hawk from Sonic Heroes.
      • It's Beam Cannon and the way it fires missiles is like the R-1/A Flying Dog from Sonic Adventure 2.
      • It flies through San Francisco and destroys everything in its path to capture or otherwise eliminate a fugitive Sonic similar to the GUN Military Truck in Sonic Adventure 2 that does the same thing, while inflicting a similar amount of destruction to a San Francisco-like city.
      • It's also very reminiscent in design and proportion to the redesigned Eggmobile from Sonic the Hedgehog (2006), but with a covered canopy and a while color scheme instead of silver.
  • Concealment Equals Cover: Tom and Sonic avoid the bullets from Robotnik's drone by... hiding behind the table. Even better, Robotnik (who had just been knocked out by Tom) is in the same room as them when Sonic causes the drone to go haywire, yet he's still completely untouched.
  • Costume Evolution:
    • The film provides an interesting example with Sonic's shoes: when he's forced to flee his homeworld as a child, he wears a pair of brown boots; later replaced with a series of beat-up running shoes as a teenager hiding out in Green Hills, finally acquiring his friction-proof red running shoes before the finale of the film.
    • Robotnik first appears wearing an all-black ensemble before switching his wardrobe in the film's climax to a red flight suit with a pair of goggles. When he ends up stranded on the mushroom planet, his flight suit becomes tattered, and his mustache becomes wild and frizzy. He also completely shaves his hair with a sharp piece of his destroyed hoverjet, establishing his Bald of Evil.
  • Crazy-Prepared:
    • When Tom's letter from the SFPD arrives, Maddie actually got two celebration cakes ready in case he was accepted or rejected by the letter.
    • Robotnik had the foresight to design an armed robotic vehicle to deploy a smaller one from its underside in the event it gets tipped on its side, and the smaller vehicle can in turn continue functioning so long as it has even one wheel left. And even if it loses that, its eye can take flight and has some manner of cutting laser. If it stops working in that form, it becomes a Sticky Bomb. If one looks closer at the designs for the larger segments of the creations, you can see even more eventualities being planned for, such as having literal eyes in the back of its 'head'.
      • At the same time, he was consciously going for overkill in that chase.
  • Creative Closing Credits: The start of the closing credits show a sprite-based animation of the events of the movie, complete with a Sonic The Hedgehog 1 sprite with custom animations.
  • Curse Cut Short: During the final battle, ironically right after Dr. Robotnik drops a PG-level Precision F-Strike.
    Robotnik: (slowly realising Tom just punched him again) Who the hell do you think you are...?
    Tom: I'm the Donut Lord, you son of a-!
    [Robotnik elbows Tom in the gut]
  • Cute Is Evil: Sonic thinks as much about Robotnik's egg-shaped drones.
    Sonic: (watching the tiny drone cutting through the car) How can something so adorable be so terrible?!
  • Deadpan Snarker: As hammy and crazed as he is, Robotnik also has a penchant for snarky one-liners:
    Robotnik: I'm initiating a sweep sequence! (Inputs commands on his glove to activate his flying drones) Ten miles in every direction should suffice. Is he [Bennington] still looking at me funny?
    Stone: Yes, he is.
    Robotnik: (nonchalantly) Tell him to stop, or I'll pull up his search history.
  • Decomposite Character: More like Decomposite Locations; Sonic on his world was in an area resembling the Green Hill Zone from the games, Sonic ends up in a human town called Green Hills, Montana.
  • Did Not See That Coming: Sonic, Tom and Maddie are cornered on the top of a building, surrounded by Robotnik's drones set to open fire on them. The protagonists note that while Sonic is fast enough to avoid them, his friends aren't. So Sonic's solution... is to push them off the building note . Even Robotnik notes he wasn't expecting that.
    Robotnik: I was not expecting that... but I was expecting not to expect something. So it doesn't count.
  • Didn't Think This Through: Sonic's plan to take down the first of Robotnik's drones is to leap onto it and smash it into pieces, but he underestimates how resilient and intuitive the drone is since his own weight is too light to bring it down and the drone simply spins fast enough to throw him off.
    Sonic: This was a horrible plan! What was I thinking? Awww, I'm gonna puke!
  • Disney Death: Twice.
    • When Sonic manages to dislodge the sticky robotic bomb from his glove only to be knocked unconscious from the bomb's explosion. And the blast seemingly almost killed him, prompting Tom to bring him to Maddie's care.
    • When Sonic and Robotnik crash into Green Hills in the climax, Sonic ends up being so beaten from having to run from Robotnik, not to mention the force of the explosion, that he apparently starts to die. Then, when Tom admits that Sonic was his friend while supposedly mourning him to the town, Sonic suddenly receives a burst of energy that revives him, the same energy that caused the blackout, getting the strength he needs to defeat Robotnik.
  • Disproportionate Retribution:
    • Dr. Robotnik threatens to pull up Major Bennington's search history for continuously looking at him funny. He also develops a vendetta against Tom all because the sheriff slugged him across the face, and vows to ruin his life out of revenge as well as capture Sonic.
    • Dr. Robotnik mentions that when he was an orphan and he went to school, he was punched in the face by The Bully. Instead of reporting it to the principal, he did ...something to the bully after which he was only able to eat through a straw for nearly a year.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Played With and subverted at the biker bar, when three burly guys come up to Sonic and Tom and say "we don't like your kind around here", to which Sonic asks what kind, and after a long pause one of the guys says, "hipsters." To which Sonic retorts, "How dare you?!"
  • Donut Mess with a Cop: Local town cop Tom Wachowski loves donuts, even talking to them to practice his promotion acceptance speech. Sonic has taken notice during his time on Earth and gave him the nickname "Donut Lord". Tom eventually uses it as an Appropriated Appellation while fist-fighting Doctor Robotnik in the climax.
  • Downer Beginning: Less than five minutes into the movie, Sonic is chased by a violent echidna tribe, is forced to leave his home forever, and his adoptive mother is presumably killed by said tribe. And he was just a little child when it all happened. He then talks about the next ten years of his life in a positive tone but it becomes quickly apparent to the audience that he is lying to himself and is desperately lonely and unfulfilled.
  • Drama-Preserving Handicap: In his first meeting with Tom, Sonic is hit with a bear tranquillizer, not only causing him to drop his bag of rings through a warp ring, but rendering him unable to run when he wakes up (which is around the same time Robotnik arrives at Tom's house).
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: After ten years of living alone, Sonic not only has friends, but he has a real home at last. He also doesn't have to hide from the town of Green Hills anymore.
  • Eiffel Tower Effect:
    • San Francisco is prominently represented by the Transamerica Pyramid, where Sonic's rings fall on top of, and a few background glimpses of the Golden Gate Bridge. One pre-redesign poster shows a first-person view of Sonic on one of the struts of the bridge, although he never actually comes near the bridge in the actual movie.
    • When Sonic and Robotnik warp to Egypt, Robotnik blows up the Great Sphinx and Sonic approaches and climbs atop the Great Pyramid of Giza.
    • They also chase across the Great Wall of China briefly.
    • When they go through France, the tower is visible but they don't actually go near it. In the animated credits sequence, Sonic spirals up the tower before entering the next ring, although it's colored like Tokyo Tower for some reason.
  • Embarrassing Browser History: Robotnik threatens to do this to Bennington for merely staring at him.
    Robotnik: Is he still looking at me funny? [...] Tell him to stop or I'll pull up his search history.
  • Emotional Powers: This is how Sonic's offensive abilities actually work. His body starts producing blue lightning whenever he starts feeling anger, extreme joy, sorrow, etc. - while his eyes would turn from green to glowing blue. The first example of this power being shown was during the baseball scene where Sonic realizes that he is completely all alone and all the stress of being alone on Earth for 10 years causes Sonic to emit a powerful electromagnetic blast that caused a blackout across the Pacific. Come the end of the film, The Power of Friendship causes Sonic to consciously bring out his full power, and it is implied that he has learned to control this.
  • EMP: Sort of. Sonic accidentally causes one by running around in the baseball field and it triggers a power blackout affecting the entire northern Pacific coast of the United States.
    • What's unusual is that the energy pattern specifically doesn't resemble an actual EMP blast, which is caused by a nuclear weapon initiating and would destroy all non-shielded electronics in the area of effect - instead of just knocking out the power. This is relevant to the plot inasmuch as it's why the government sends Robotnik in to investigate rather than immediately declare war.
  • Epic Fail: While on the road, Sonic and Tom play darts in the Piston Pit bar. Sonic rapid-fire throws a few dozen darts at the dart board, and misses with every one of them. The camera then pans to the wall riddled with darts everywhere but the board, then to a waitress frozen in shock with several darts stuck in her hat, clothes, and the beers she's carrying.
  • Establishing Character Moment:
    • Robotnik's first few moments on-screen are accompanied by him dressing down Major Bennington, whilst his sidekick "translates" everything his boss says to said-Major, greatly reflecting his condescension and arrogance. He also spares no eccentric words, indicating he's a few eggs short of a whole carton.
    • Rachel spells out "divorce" after a phone call between Maddie and Tom, establishing her objection to their relationship.
    • In The Stinger, the first thing Tails does upon arriving on Earth and discovering Sonic's whereabouts is to jump off a cliff... and perform his signature Propeller Flying ability to hover back up before speeding off to find him.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: While he personally doesn't fit this trope, Robotnik has a few examples Played for Laughs. When Sonic pushes Tom and Maddie off a building Robotnik is horrified and states, "I was not expecting that". But he was expecting not to expect something so it doesn't count. He also calls out Sonic for making an illegal left turn and chastises Sonic for running up one of the pyramids of Giza, pointing out they are one of the seven wonders of the world (even though he blew up the Sphinx's head beforehand).
  • Evil-Detecting Dog: Not evil but Ozzy the golden retriever can't stop barking when he notices Tom has Sonic the Hedgehog bundled up in a blanket.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Dr. Robotnik is such an awful person that the Pentagon generals are openly against assigning him to investigate the blackout, only relenting because he's the only person smart enough to do so. It's very telling that, despite Robotnik being a government agent, the Pentagon doesn't hesitate to abandon him and render him an Unperson when Sonic strands him in Mushroom World, nor do they plan on retaliating against Tom for his role in harming him. It might have something to do with the massive destruction in San Francisco, and various other places around the world, that they did not authorize.
  • Everything Is An I Pod In The Future: Robotnik's drones are round, white, and have black monitors with red glowing lights for eyes. Since they remind Sonic of eggs, he uses them as an excuse to call him "Eggman".
  • Evil Is Hammy: Jim Carrey as Dr. Robotnik. He's clearly having the time of his life bringing Robotnik to the big screen, combining his penchant for loud and manic characters with the already bombastic nature of the source character. Whether it's him dancing while preparing his vehicles, to screaming about his love of lattes with steamed Austrian goat milk, his portrayal is definitely one to be remembered. Then there's the moment Robotnik has a Freak Out, complete with exaggerated movements, after Sonic destroys his robots on the highway.
    Robotnik: [stomping around his base] OUUUUUGH! GIVE ME A BIG! FAT! BREAK!
  • Evil Overlooker: One of the posters released with the second trailer has a large Robotnik grinning evilly and looming behind a running Sonic.
  • Exact Words: When Sonic asks Tom how he can get to San Francisco, Tom tells him to go west. Sonic follows his advice, only to end up going too far to the west and having a run-in with the Pacific Ocean.
  • Eye Awaken: Sonic appears to have been defeated by Dr. Robotnik, but Tom tells the evil scientist how much our hero means to his family and town, even going so far as to say that Sonic was his friend. Immediately after comes a close-up shot of Sonic's eye snapping open with newfound determination and crackling with electricity as the power within him is let loose— power that he uses to ultimately defeat Robotnik.
  • Fainting: Upon seeing Sonic for the first time, Maddie's sister Rachel barely has enough time to ask her young daughter to catch her before passing out.
  • Faux Affably Evil: While he's far more of an asshole than most other versions, Dr. Robotnik can act civil and polite when he wants to. Key word being "act". For example, he introduces himself in a friendly and cordial manner when he goes to see Tom at his home, then casually forces his way in and aims one of his machine gun-armed drones at his head for information about Sonic when he finds the dropped quill.
  • Fingerprinting Air: Robotnik scans one of Sonic's shoeprints, and from the indentation is able to discern the exact shape of Sonic's feet. From that he is able to extrapolate Sonic's physical characteristics, and from there works out that Sonic is a completely alien lifeform.
  • Fish out of Water: Downplayed. Sonic came to Earth as a child and has spent ten years hovering around the town of Green Hills, making him familiar with the townspeople and general pop culture even if he is only an Urban Legend called "the blue devil." This means in the present day he is familiar with Earth, though missing out on a lot of personal experiences he wants to explore. The chili dog is a good example: he seems to not have known they existed prior to encountering one, but is fairly certain what it is afterwards.
  • Five-Second Foreshadowing:
    • During the chase through San Francisco, Sonic skids under a truck with an ad for a travel agency on the side, reading "Visit Paris!" over a shot of the Eiffel Tower. A few seconds later, Sonic's next thrown ring portal sends them to the Eiffel Tower, since they send you to whatever location you were thinking of.
    • Listen closely to the "Speed Me Up" song during the credits. One of the lyrics reads "best friend named Tails". A few moments later, during The Stinger of the movie, Tails shows up, looking for Sonic.
  • Flat "What": This is Tom's reaction after bursting into his garage to find Sonic, shooting him with a tranquilizer, Sonic accidentally opening a giant golden portal to San Francisco and dropping his bag of rings into said portal after collapsing.
  • Fluffy Dry Cat: After Sonic tries to cross the Pacific Ocean, he ends up soaking wet. When Tom agrees to help him get to San Francisco, Sonic uses his Super Speed to rapidly dry off, causing his quills to fluff up. A second high-speed shake returns his quills to normal.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Tom wanting to leave Green Hills for a police job at San Francisco, the latter city of which is where the climax begins.
    • Sonic describes the "mushroom planet" throughout the movie. At the end, that's where he sends Robotnik.
    • After Dr. Robotnik's sunglasses are broken during his initial confrontation with Tom, he asks Agent Stone to call a glasses retailer for new lenses, cryptically adding that they "know which ones I like." When he shows up at San Francisco during the climax, he sports his trademark goggles as replacements.
    • Earlier on, when Sonic is watching Speed behind the Wachowskis' back, he repeats the "pop quiz, hot shot" line from said movie. He says the line again at the Piston Pit, right before he instigates the Bar Brawl.
    • The entire Bullet Time sequence during the Bar Brawl foreshadows Sonic's eventual use of it during action scenes.
    • Sonic's "bucket list" gets crossed off almost entirely at the bar and motel, includes entries such as "run along GREAT WALL" and "making a friend". During the chase sequence with Robotnik, Sonic does get to run along the Great Wall of China. Furthermore, at the climatic battle at Green Hills, Tom admits Sonic was his friend, which ends up rejuvenating Sonic before he dies.
    • Wade, after being intimidated by Robotnik and government agents at his office, asks if they're going to mindwipe him before shouting he will tell people. At the climax battle at Green Hills, he shows up with the townsfolk armed and ready to shoot the Eggman's death robot.
    • Several times throughout the movie it pans slowly across Sonic's old, ugly, mismatched, duct taped shoes, making his eventual upgrade to his trademark red sneakers all the more anticipated.
    • When Dr. Robotnik first shows up at the Wachowski residence, Tom has Sonic hide in the attic. The same attic that will become his new home in the end.
  • Forgot About His Powers: Justified. We're shown (repeatedly) that Sonic can move so quickly when he's in danger that time almost stands still around him. Yet when Tom shoots at him with a tranquilizer gun he makes no attempt to run or move out of the way - because he's caught by surprise. Sonic can move at supersonic speeds, but only consciously, and can still be caught off-guard.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: The four leads fill these roles:
    • Sonic (Sanguine): the carefree daredevil who loves living life to its fullest and longs for true friendship.
    • Tom (Melancholic): the competent officer who is great at what he does but wants to prove himself more.
    • Maddie (Phlegmatic): the caring veterinarian who is willing to sacrifice her conveniences to help others.
    • Robotnik (Choleric): the brash, arrogant, and eccentric super-genius who cares only for his machines and inventions.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus:
    • A brief glimpse of red dreadlocks reveals that the masked tribe hunting Longclaw and Sonic for the latter's powers are echidnas (Knuckles' species).
    • First time viewers probably aren't gonna notice that the echidna who shoots down Longclaw is Pachacamac, the tyrannical tribe leader from Sonic Adventurenote . The detail was so easy to miss that Tyson Hesse had to publicly reveal the cameo on his Twitter.
    • The breaker switches in Robotnik's mobile lab are labelled "BADNIKS" and "EVIL LAIR".
    • While he's browsing for "Tunes of Anarchy" in his computer lab, we can see one of Robotnik's playlists is named "Crush 40".
    • Sonic's map of safe worlds includes Sonic 3's Bonus Stage and a Chaos Emerald.
  • Fungus Humongous: Sonic's next destination, in case Earth becomes unsafe for him, was a planet filled with giant mushrooms. At the end of the film, Robotnik ends up stranded on that planet, thanks to Sonic and Tom sending him there.
  • Funny Afro: Invoked. When Sonic does the Fluffy Dry Cat move, the quills on his head become a big, afro-like puff.
  • Furry Confusion: According to Sonic, Longclaw eats mice, implying that regular mice somehow exist on Sonic's planet of anthropomorphic animals.
  • Genius Bruiser: Despite relying mostly on his robots and pooh-pooing things like physical confrontation, Robotnik is no slouch in a fight, being able to throw a very large biker out of a (freshly replaced) glass window when threatened.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
    • As Dr. Robotnik shows off his fleet of flying robots to the government:
      Robotnik: Look what came out of my egg sac!
    • When Major Bennington is annoying him, Robotnik threatens to show everyone Bennington's search history.
    • Sonic complaining to Tom as he notices Dr. Robotnik and his robots swarm the house.
      Tom: I'm not in the mood to be probed.
      Sonic: You think you're worried? I'm not even wearing pants!
    • This exchange between Tom and Robotnik:
      Robotnik: I was spitting out formulas while you were spitting up formula.
      Tom: I was breast-fed, actually.
      Robotnik: Nice. Rub that in my orphan face.
  • Glass Cannon: Sonic is insanely fast but his small size means he has trouble dealing harm to even regular humans by conventional means (his rapid-fire punches do nothing to a big guy in a Bar Brawl) and it doesn't take much to knock him down. It isn't until he develops his spinball move coupled with lightning powers that he learns to fight bigger opponents. He is more durable than he looks though, and survives a bunch of hits throughout the movie that would normally kill something his size.
  • Godzilla Threshold: Everyone in the war room agrees that calling in Dr. Robotnik is something no one but him will enjoy but when dealing with a potential terrorist threat that can black out the entire northwest United States, there isn't anyone better.
  • Go Mad from the Isolation:
    • Downplayed. While not insane, Sonic has clearly gotten desperate for meaningful contact after more than a decade of being alone. When the film begins, he's been living in a cave on Earth for ten years, and his extended isolation has taken a toll on his mental state. He pretends to have conversations and activities by using his Super Speed, and also pretends to have friends by spying on the residents of Green Hills; he even acknowledges at one point that his loneliness has driven him a "bit crazy". Sonic finally hits his breaking point while playing a baseball game by himself; he scores a home run, cheers for himself, and looks over at the stands to see them completely empty. The resulting frustration and sorrow Sonic feels is what leads him to trigger the EMP that knocks out power across half the country.
      Sonic: I really am alone... all alone. Forever.
    • Played straight with Doctor Robotnik. Not that he was all that sane to begin with. Having been stranded in the Mushroom Planet for 87 days and shaving his head completely bald hasn't given his sanity any help. He even adopts a Companion Cube rock and calls it Agent Stone after his former lackey. In spite of this, he makes a Badass Boast that this isn't going to hold him back.
  • Good Colors, Evil Colors: Sonic obviously has his trademark blue quills/fur and also glows brightly when charging up. Robotnik favours primarily black or red for his clothes and vehicles.
  • Government Conspiracy: The United States federal government is seeking to capture whatever caused that blackout, and it turns out Robotnik is on their payroll (having dealt with certain hush-hush missions beforehand).
  • Green Hill Zone:
    • The Trope Namer makes an appearance as the island where Sonic lived on his home planet, with palm trees, totem poles, checkered cliffs, naturally occurring loop-de-loops, geometrically-shaped flowers, and all.
    • The town he lives in on Earth is called Green Hills.
  • Grievous Bottley Harm: Subverted. Sonic gets picked on by bar brawlers, and tries to break a bottle against one's head, having been inspired by watching "way too many action movies". Unfortunately for him, the bottle doesn't break, leaving him dumbfounded. He then rapidly tries it again, to no avail.
    Sonic: Huh. Am I crazy? It was supposed to break, right?
  • Happily Married: Despite her sister's wishes otherwise, Maddie and Tom are quite happy together, very supportive of one another's dreams, and support each other even when Sonic's weirdness catches up to them.
  • Hero Antagonist: The US government and its military forces aren't portrayed as bad people; they're just trying to find out what caused a damaging anomaly in their country. It's Robotnik who's the really bad one. At the end of the movie, the commander even shows himself to be a Reasonable Authority Figure who lets the Wachowskis go, offers them a token of appreciation for getting rid of Robotnik (even if it is a Comically Small Bribe), and wants to have a personal, informal chat with Sonic.
  • Heroic Second Wind: In the final confrontation with Dr. Robotnik, Sonic is struck by an explosion that knocks him out and it appears he's either dead or unconscious. As Robotnik mocks Sonic, Tom jumps in to fight him, but is knocked off. Robotnik then mocks Tom for trying to risk his life for "this... thing" and Tom angrily corrects him, stating that thing is named Sonic, and he was his friend. Sonic, who had spent the entire movie believing he would live alone without any friends, suddenly opens his eyes as blue sparks erupt about his body, and immediately challenges Robotnik to round 2 using his innate power.
  • Herr Doktor: When Sonic self-analyzes his feelings of loneliness at the beginning, he asks questions to himself while mimicking the stereotypical psychologist's Austrian accent.
  • Higher-Tech Species: Sonic mentions that all advanced species in the universe use Rings to travel. Humans don't have them.
  • How We Got Here: The film begins with Sonic being chased by Robotnik throughout San Francisco. There is a pause as a voice-over from Sonic relates how he got to this point. The film quickly rewinds to his childhood in the Green Hill Zone of his home planet and moves from there. Then during the climax, it catches up to the freezeframe where the movie started.
    Sonic: So, here we are again. We've been through so much together! Now you understand why there's a psychotic robot doctor chasing a supersonic blue hedgehog! Wanna know how it ends? Yeah, me too!
  • Humans Are Morons: Robotnik believes this. He sees people as "idiotic and useless", and considers his robots to be far superior.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Tom tries to tell Sonic that the junk food Sonic asked for him to buy isn't very healthy. Says the man who eats a dozen donuts a day.
  • Idiot Ball: One that was caused by Sonic's redesign. Sonic gets a sticky bomb stuck to his hand and tries to do everything he can to get it off... except take off his glove. The is because before his redesign, he didn't have gloves on.
    • It's subtle, but in general both Sonic and Robotnik have trouble with simple solutions when they lose their cool or are taken by surprise.
  • I Just Like Saying the Word: Sonic is rather fond of saying "guac" when he's at the bar. He even says it when Robotnik asks him if he has any last words in the climax, admitting that he chose it just because he likes the word.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: Sonic's motivation is making a real friend. Because of Longclaw's instruction to never let anyone see him, Sonic stays out of sight in Green Hills. But he becomes desperately lonely after so much isolation. One of the items on his "bucket list" is to make a real friend. By the end of the movie, he's made a genuine friend with Tom and his wife Maddie.
  • I Meant to Do That: After Sonic manages to outwit him and escape a carefully planned trap, a stunned Dr. Robotnik admits — probably for the first time in his life — that he genuinely Didn't See That Coming... then he promptly adds that he was expecting to not expect something so it doesn't count.
  • Implausible Deniability: Green Hills' local nutcase, Crazy Carl, is the only person in town to have claimed to have seen Sonic zooming around town for the past 10 years since he arrived on Earth, and the only evidence he has is a poorly drawn picture that cleverly resembles a classic piece of "bad" Sonic fanart. An early scene in the movie has him attempting to capture Sonic in a field of bear traps, but Sonic just trips them all without being caught.
    Crazy Carl: I KNOW YOU'RE OUT THERE, AND I KNOW YOU'RE REAL!!!
    Sonic (In the distance): NO, I'M NOT!
  • I'm Standing Right Here:
    • Tom and Maddie discuss commandeering Rachel's car among other things while Rachel is tied to a chair and listening to their entire conversation.
    • Wade also complains about how mean Robotnik and his MIB-like crew are, marching into his office and asking questions. Tom called him in the first place to tell him to not talk to or cooperate with them, but then we see they have been standing and listening to the one-sided conversation since the call started.
  • Incoming Ham: The way Robotnik’s trailer and entourage arrive in their first scene lets you know that the generals weren’t kidding about this guy.
  • In Medias Res: At the beginning of the film, Sonic leads Robotnik on a chase throughout San Francisco. Then it rewinds back to How We Got Here.
  • Instant Convertible: During the highway chase, a tiny Robotnik drone cuts off the top of Tom's truck with a laser cutter.
    Sonic: Aww, this one is cute. Let's keep him! [tiny robot activates its laser cutter, and begins burning its way around the top of the car] WHOA!
    Sonic: How can something so adorable be so terrible?! ...You've got car insurance, right?
  • Instant Sedation: Downplayed realistically, as Sonic passes out a few seconds after taking a tranquilizer dart to the leg. (Since it's meant for bears, it takes him a while to fully recover, even with his fast metabolism.)
  • Intelligent Gerbil: Sonic the Hedgehog is an alien from another planet who is clearly a sentient version of a hedgehog. Other members of the planet, such as Longclaw the Owl, the Echidna Tribe, and Miles "Tails" Prower the fox, are also sapient versions of Earth animals.
  • Irony:
    • At the beginning of the film, Sonic is terribly lonely. At the end, however, he is Happily Adopted by the Wachowskis while his nemesis, Robotnik, ends up stranded and alone on the mushroom planet.
    • In the beginning, Robotnik threatens Tom's life and makes a point that if he does go through with shooting him, then no one will miss him. Later, at the end of the movie, the military tries to erase all evidence of Robotnik's existence. In a sense, no one will remember him.
  • Is That the Best You Can Do?: During the car chase scene, after Sonic destroys the first tank.
    Sonic: Is that all you got?
    Robotnik: No, but thanks for asking. (the tank pops out a smaller vehicle from its underside)
  • Lame Pun Reaction: When Sonic talks with Tom about how he's going to have to hide on the Mushroom Planet after he gets his Rings back, Tom quips that at least Sonic won't be the only "fun guy" there. Sonic's response is an unamused "NO. Don't EVER do that again."
  • Laser-Guided Karma: By the end of the film, Robotnik finds himself isolated on the mushroom planet after Sonic destroys his hovercraft and sends him flying through a portal ring, while Sonic himself is finally able to settle down on Earth and end his own isolation.
  • Last Stand: The last that baby Sonic sees of Longclaw is of her spreading her injured wings to take on the echidna tribe and stop them from entering the ring portal before it closes.
  • Layman's Terms: After Dr. Robotnik gives his long-winded opinion of what he thinks about Major Bennington's importance, he asks his assistant Agent Stone to summarize for him.
    Agent Stone: The doctor thinks you're basic.
  • Live-Action Adaptation: The first ever live-action film adaptation of a Sonic the Hedgehog videogame.
  • Logo Joke:
    • The Paramount logo replaces the stars with Sonic's gold rings, in both the movie and trailers. In the former, the ring's sound effects are added when they begin to circle the mountain.
    • The film uses a custom Sega logo made out of video game screens playing Sega video games, with the first screen seen showing Sonic games. An approximation of the "SE-GA!" sound plays over it a couple of times.
  • Market-Based Title:
    • The film is called Sonic: The Movie in multiple countries, including Japan, France, Spain and Latin America. Some territories, however, simply translate the original title, like Quebec (Sonic le hérisson) or Hungary (Sonic, a sündisznó).
    • The movie is called 音速小子 (Yinsu Xiaozi, "Sonic Kid") in Taiwan.
  • Matryoshka Object: One of Robotnik's machines is a mecha that, every time it explodes, releases a smaller mecha inside of it. At its smallest, it's a sticky time bomb that blows up and knocks Sonic unconscious.
  • Mickey Mousing: The entire scene with Robotnik conducting experiments on Sonic's dropped quill (and discovering its potentially unlimited power) is interspersed with him busting out various energetic dance moves along to The Poppy Family's Where Evil Grows. Even the actual experimentation is timed perfectly to the music.
  • Militaries Are Useless: The military is shown to be utterly incapable of their jobs, giving Dr. Robotnik maximum leeway in the operation and not caring about his true intentions. Even worse, poor Major Beinnington isn't even able to introduce himself or complete a sentence when he confronts Robotnik, simply walking away when he takes over the operation without any challenge whatsoever.
    • Discussed and Justified: the Pentagon sends in Robotnik because they realize he's the only asset they have who can figure out what caused the incident in a reasonable amount of time. After Robotnik gets involved, only two days pass before he's exiled to the Mushroom Planet, and he comes close to capturing or eliminating Sonic several times in that period. (That, and it appears that the EMP incident took out any satellites that might have enabled them to track Sonic.)
  • A Minor Kidroduction: The prologue introduces Sonic as a child peacefully living on his planet with his guardian Longclaw. It ends with Longclaw giving Sonic a bag of portal rings to protect himself from enemies, kicking off the events of the film.
  • Monumental Damage: While Robotnik pursues Sonic through ring-induced portals, he shoots the Sphinx and Pyramids of Giza.
  • Mood Whiplash: The scene with the tiny robot removing the roof of Tom's car and turning into a sticky bomb starts out as being Played for Laughsbut isn't very funny when it explodes and Sonic is caught in the blast, knocking him unconscious.
  • Morality Pet: The only person Robotnik shows ANY form of kindness to is Agent Stone, complimenting the way he makes lattes and literally naming a rock Agent Stone on the mushroom planet showing he did indeed miss Stone despite claiming he wouldn't miss him when they departed earlier in the movie.
  • Motor Mouth: Sonic doesn't get a lot of people to talk to, so once he does, it's hard to shut him up. Even when Tom and Maddie step outside to have a moment to themselves, Sonic's still talking in the other room, even though no one's listening to him. Even before Sonic gets anyone to interact with he's seen talking to himself repeatedly, which is implied to be a coping mechanism to deal with his loneliness.
  • Movie Superheroes Wear Black: Or Supervillains, in this case. Robotnik dons black attire for most of the beginning of the film, though he does switch to a flight suit that is closer to his red and black garb from the games. His badnik drones are also grey, white and black, mimicking the bosses from the very first game - unlike some of his more colorful robots from the later games.
  • Musicalus Interruptus: Twice in a row. Robotnik's media player slows down and stops (despite being digital) when he first wires up Sonic's quill, causing all of his circuit breakers to trip. When they're reset and he starts dancing, he's startled by Agent Stone, and the music stops instantly with Robotnik's scream.
  • Musical Nod: While Tom and Maddie are painting the interior of their house during the ending, a simple piano arrangement of the series' Bootstrapped Theme Green Hill Zone is played in the background.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Sonic has this reaction immediately after inadvertently causing an electromagnetic blast at the baseball park, having lost control of his anger over being alone.
  • Mysterious Past: Not as vague as the games tend to be, but much of Sonic's history remains unexplained with very little time spent in his homeworld prior to coming to Earth. All that can be said is he's been pursued for his Super Speed since childhood, he was raised as an orphan by a talking owl named Longclaw, and he's been living around Green Hills for ten years since he came to Earth.
  • Mythology Gag: Has its own page.
  • Never Trust a Trailer:
    • The first trailer shows Sonic causing the EMP blast by running down a remote road too fast. The accident actually happened at a baseball field. Speaking of...
    • The second trailer implies the accident was the result of Sonic running too fast scoring points, being reckless, not caring about any collateral damage he may be causing. In the actual film, however, it's an Angst Nuke, as Sonic's loneliness and frustration from ten years of forced isolation finally boil over. He also reacts to the EMP with immediate horror, and it's implied he didn't even know he could do that.
    • And on that note, the trailer makes it appear that Sonic is enjoying his life on Earth despite being alone. This isn't the case at all: he was forced out of his own home planet to escape capture and hasn't interacted with anyone in ten years, turning him into a depressed loner.
    • The trailers also show Sonic wearing his signature red sneakers throughout, while in the film, he spends most of his screentime wearing worn-out mismatched grey shoes. He wouldn't receive his super sneakers until about two-thirds into the movie.
    • The second trailer also shows Sonic running around the Green Hill Zone-esque island on his homeworld as a teenager. In the film, Sonic was forced to flee from his homeworld as a small child and has not returned since.
    • Some lines from the movie are used in different contexts between the trailer and the movies. For example, Sonic saying "Gotta Go Fast!" isn't said when he's about to start running along the Montana desert highway, but rather after being woken with smelling salts.
    • The trailers played fast and loose with the detail of why Sonic is on Earth. The first trailer and the international version of the second trailer states Sonic came to Earth to save it, but in the actual film the actual reason why Sonic is on Earth is that his adoptive mother Longclaw sent him to Earth a decade ago to protect him from an echinda tribe after his power. The US version of the second trailer was more honest about this, with Sonic talking about how on his world "people were always after my power".
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: In the final battle Sonic suddenly has the ability to drain the energy from the quill that Robotnik is using to power his equipment.
  • Never Say "Die": When Tom tells Sonic what a bucket list is without saying he'll die.
    Tom: It's a list of things you want to do before you kick the bucket.
  • Nice Guy:
    • Sonic the Hedgehog. Maybe even more so than his gaming counterpart; while gaming Sonic has a good heart and an easy going personality, he also has something of an attitude. In the movie, he's much more outwardly cheerful and friendly to all creatures, most likely due to his want of friends, and will put his life on the line to protect others for straightfowardly defensive reasons.
    • Tom and Maddie's niece Jojo becomes one of Sonic's friends and is the one who gives him his iconic shoes.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: The movie's central conflict happens because Tom shoots Sonic with a tranquilizer dart, accidentally resulting in all of Sonic's power rings getting sent to San Francisco. The resulting road trip from Montana to California is because Tom agrees to help Sonic retrieve the power rings. On top of this, Tom also allowed Robotnik to acquire one of Sonic's quills to Robotnik because he just left it lying around his house (not realizing its significance) instead of putting it away.
  • Nice Shoes:
    • Sonic wears a mismatched pair of tattered old sneakers throughout the film that he likely scavenged out of the garbage until he is brought to Rachel's house in San Francisco to recover from the Sticky Bomb explosion. Once there, Jojo sees how horribly worn-out his sneakers are and gives him a new pair which are red with one single white stripe that look like his trademark sneakers from the games.
    • Dr. Robotnik appears to be wearing black high-top sneakers that resemble Converse All-Stars.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • Per Vice Chairman Walters, Robotnik played major roles in the coups of Pakistan and Azerbaijan, neither of which are elaborated on in the Pentagon meeting. Tellingly, not only do the personnel not acknowledge the coups in question (which imply heavily that their details are classified from the public), but the Navy Chief of Staff adds that the latter country "isn't even a country." One is left to imagine what he exactly meant by that. Even more eyebrow-raising, Waters mispronounces the name of the latter country as "Azerbaijanistan", though whether or not it was a deliberate mispronunciation is left unaddressed.
    • Robotnik notes that as a child he was punched in the face by a bully, and in retaliation the bully ended up having to eat from a straw for a year. He doesn't elaborate on what he did to said bully.
  • No-Sell: During the Bar Brawl, not only does Sonic try to take down a thug by hitting him in the head with an unbreakable bottle, he also tries to do some Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs. Nothing works, because he lacks the size and strength to make it work.
  • No Sense of Direction: Sonic is fast, but he's ultimately not from Earth and doesn't know how to get exactly where he needs to go. When Tom tells him San Francisco is directly west from Montana (even though it's actually southwest) Sonic zooms off, only to return a moment later wet and a fish on his head saying he hit the ocean.
  • Nothing Exciting Ever Happens Here: Green Hills is an idyllic but ultimately humdrum small town. Tom, the sheriff, never gets to do anything he considers real police work, so he's been trying to get work outside the town. At the start of the movie, he is accepted to join the San Francisco PD but the events of the movie throw a monkey wrench into that, of course. At the end of the movie, he comes to realize it's not the work you do but who you do it for that makes the difference and agrees to keep his job.
  • Not What It Looks Like: Not outright stated, but implied when Tom carries an unconscious Sonic, (wrapped in a blanket), into his sister-in-law's house, causing no small commotion in the process, and later smuggling Sonic in a duffel bag into a crowded building.
  • Obnoxious In-Laws: Maddie's sister Rachel doesn't like Tom, to put it nicely. Even before he became a fugitive, she would jump on any flimsy excuse to tell Maddie to divorce him. She becomes so obnoxious that she has to be tied up to a chair to stop her from being a nuisance. Her daughter Jojo on the other hand is a sweetie who loves her "Uncle Tommy" very much, perhaps even more than her mom, since she doesn't seem to particularly care that her aunt and uncle tied her mom to a chair.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Sonic has this reaction when he accidentally causes a blackout during a moment of depression while at the baseball field and running to relieve his pent-up stress.
    • The Pentagon has this, because they can tell the blackout was a couple of states wide.
    • Tom when he finds out he's labeled as a terrorist on the news due to being an accomplice (and probably for punching out Robotnik).
    • Sonic again when goes into super speed while at the top of the San Francisco building where his rings fell to counter Robotnik's missile barrage. Just as he's heading down it to save Tom and Maddie (he pushed them off to save them), Robotnik activates a device in his drone that siphons energy from the quill he found earlier and allowing him to enter hypertime too. Sonic turns around just in time to see him come barreling right for him and firing another missile.
    • Maddie has one at the end when, after being teleported back to Green Hills by Sonic, she remembers that she left her sister tied to a chair at her home in San Francisco.
  • Older Than They Look: Invoked. Since the bar doesn't allow kids inside, Tom tells the bar waitress that Sonic isn't a kid, he is really a 40-year-old man with a skin condition that turned his skin blue and stunted his growth. Also, he's wearing a mask. (Ultimately Averted, since the waitress doesn't completely buy it and they get him a soda anyway.)
  • Ominous Walk: A floating variation. While Robotnik had just been chasing Sonic at super speed thanks to having one of Sonic's quills, when he finally blasts Sonic in Egypt just as Sonic enters the portal to Green Hills, Robotnik flies his craft through the portal slowly, knowing that Sonic can't run now.
  • Only One Name:
    • Rachel and her daughter Jojo's last name is never mentioned.
    • Agent Stone's first name is never mentioned.
  • Open Heart Dentistry: Tom brings an unconscious Sonic to Maddie, but despite her being a Kindly Vet, she's hesitant to do anything to Sonic with him having an alien physiology. Tom asks if she has smelling salts for animals, but she does have "human smelling salts" in her first-aid kit, which snap Sonic awake.
  • Orange/Blue Contrast: Sonic is of course bright blue and his electrical powers tied to his Super Speed manifest in blue lightning. Robotnik meanwhile has his lab decorated in red lighting, his robots prominently use red lights in their designs, and later in the film Robotnik swaps out his black coat for a red coat with red goggles.
  • Origins Episode: The film showcases a scenario explaining how Sonic entered the human realm and met — and fought — Dr. Robotnik for the first time.
  • Parental Abandonment:
    • Sonic's parents aren't in the movie, and it isn't explained why. His only parental figure is another older animal, this time an owl.
    • Dr. Robotnik. He grew up in an orphanage, he never met his parents and when Tom pointed out he was breastfed by his mother, Robotnik called him a braggart.
  • Parental Bonus: "Speed Me Up" has the line "do the dash like Tay K". While this will fly over the little ones, the bigger ones, who may know Tay K as a rapper convicted of murder, will be surprised.
  • Pet the Dog: The nicest thing Dr. Robotnik does throughout the course of the film is compliment the way Agent Stone makes lattes when the latter offers him one. He also names a rock "Agent Stone" on the mushroom planet showing that, despite claiming he wouldn't miss him when they departed, he truly did miss Agent Stone.
  • Please Wake Up: Tom says this to the unconscious Sonic after he is injured by the bomb exploding.
  • Plot-Mandated Friendship Failure: Subverted. It looks like this is going to happen when Sonic finds out Tom is considering moving away from Green Hills - he grew up without friends, so he cannot understand why someone would willingly leave theirs behind. While at first Sonic sees this as a personal betrayal, he's only angry for a couple of scenes, and gets over it after a while and apologises to Tom for this just before the climax.
  • Point That Somewhere Else: When Crazy Carl threatens to fight Robotnik, he stands too close to Wade, who has to push the running chainsaw a safer distance away.
  • The Power of Friendship: Tom mentioning Sonic as his friend is enough to pull Sonic onto his feet again.
  • Power Source: Sonic's ability to generate massive amounts of electrical energy can be tapped into if someone is able to get a hold of one of his discarded quills, which Robotnik does and harnesses to amp up his robots. The energy contained in even a single quill is so tremendous that it shorts out Robotnik's entire trailer the first time he tries to use it and his computer reads its energy potential as "Unlimited".
  • Precision F-Strike: Robotnik gets one when Tom tries to stop him from killing Sonic by brawling him from behind.
    Robotnik: Who the hell do you think you are?
  • Production Throwback:
    • Sonic is seen watching Gopher Broke, a 2004 film that was director Jeff Fowler's first animated project.
    • When Sonic takes the wheel of Tom's truck while they are being chased by Robotnik, he makes a Shout Out to The Fast and the Furious, which producer Niel Moritz also worked on.
      Sonic: I feel just like Vin Diesel! "It's all about family, Tom!"
  • Product Placement: Generally downplayed.
    • Tom's truck is a Toyota Tacoma. It gets harpooned through the back windshield and seat to the dashboard and the entire top gets sliced off by a drone's laser cutter, but hey, it still drives!note  A brief shot of the front of the truck before he and Sonic enter the bar has the Toyota emblem briefly visible, though slightly obscured due to the night sky.
    • Averted with Olive Garden. Despite its' slogan being recited twice in the movie, with the second time being when the government offers the Wachowskis a Comically Small Bribe of a fifty-dollar Olive Garden gift card to keep quiet about Robotnik. Writer Patrick Casey stated in an AMA that it was included as a joke, and that the studio wasn't paid for it.
    • Maddie offhandedly mentions that she was using Zillow to look up a place to live in San Francisco, and this is accompanied by the camera lingering on her laptop, displaying Zillow's site, for a few seconds. However, it comes with a punchline of an apartment running for the bargain price of $4,300 a month. Welcome to the Bay Area!
    • A subtle one at the bar scene: while there are plenty of beer brands visible, one that stands out is a Busch beer sign, which takes up a good part of the upper screen at one point. A Freeze-Frame Bonus during Sonic's Bullet Time sequence also shows him passing through said sign.
  • Rage Breaking Point: When Sonic plays baseball by himself, he hits a ball out of the park, pretending that he just scored a game-winning home run. He acts excited until he looks into the stands, and sees them completely empty. Sonic's frustration and sorrow over being alone for so long finally boil over, causing him to run around the bases so fast that he causes an EMP-like anomoly, kickstarting the rest of the plot.
  • Reactive Continuous Scream: Happens when Sonic first meets Tom.
    Sonic: Uh... meow?
    Tom: AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!
    Sonic: AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!
    Tom: [proceeds to tranq Sonic]
  • Reality Ensues: During a bar brawl, Sonic attempts to break a beer bottle on a thug's head, having been inspired by watching "way too many action movies". The bottle doesn't break, leaving Sonic momentarily dumbfounded. Sonic even says to himself that he "thought these were supposed to break". (It's because glass in movies is made of a substance that's designed to easily break. Real glass is much tougher than that, and it's entirely possible for someone as small and light as Sonic to have trouble breaking a bottle.)
    • Sonic defeats said thug by making him run through the bar's window. When we see said thug again, he's in a neck brace. Once again, real glass is tougher than movies let on.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Dr. Robotnik tends to give these out in quick succession to whomever he feels isn't complying with his demands in the manner to which he is accustomed.
  • Red Herring: Towards the beginning of the movie, a scene with Maddie's sister Rachel (who hates Tom and constantly tries to convince Maddie to divorce him) and a meaningful-looking shot of Robotnik's drone riddling a photo of Maddie and Tom with bullets suggests that the shenanigans of the movie might put a strain on Maddie and Tom's relationship. This never happens, Maddie is amazingly patient with the shenanigans Tom's apparently gotten up to even before she sees the wounded humanoid hedgehog he's been protecting, and in fact Rachel spends the entire second half of the movie tied to a chair where nobody, not even her own daughter, will listen to her.
  • Remake Cameo: Gary Chalk appears as the US Navy Chief of Staff in the Pentagon meeting, and even gets several lines to boot. Chalk previously voiced Grounder in Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog and, ironically, Robotnik himself in Sonic Underground. He's even doing a similar voice to that of the Underground Robotnik as the General.
  • Right Behind Me: Tom calls his deputy, Wade, to find out if Robotnik and the army are still around Green Hills and if he's listening in. Turns out he was.
  • Rhetorical Question Blunder: After Sonic takes out one of Robotnik's vehicles, he rhetorically asks if Robotnik's got anything else. He actually does.
    Sonic: Ho-ho! Is that all you've got? [speeds back into Tom's truck]
    Robotnik: [behind a control panel] No, but thank you for asking. [launches a second, detachable vehicle from the bottom of the larger vehicle's chassis, which immediately races after the duo]
    Sonic: Uh-oh.
  • Road Trip Plot: Tom and Sonic are forced to hit the road when Robotnik tracks them down, Tom more or less unwittingly having to go on the lam to protect Sonic as well as get to San Francisco to get his warp rings back.
  • Running Gag:
    • Sonic's constant griping about his hatred of mushrooms after learning his other option is to live on the mushroom planet.
    • Sonic has some nicknames for people around town. Tom is Donut Lord for how he "interrogates" his donuts and Maddie is "Pretzel Lady" for how she does yoga on her back porch. In his big confrontation with Robotnik, he starts calling him "Eggman" since all his drones are egg-shaped.
  • Sad Clown: Sonic still has his signature cocky attitude and makes plenty of quips, but it's all to cope with the loneliness he suffers from, having escaped his home dimension and not allowing himself to befriend anyone lest he put everyone in danger. His only alternative to observing the people of Earth make friends and live their lives is to escape to a barren mushroom planet with absolutely no intelligent life aside from himself. It's not until he attempts to play a climactic inning of baseball with himself that his loneliness finally overwhelms him, causing him to unleash his stress by running fast enough to cause a regionwide blackout and kick off the plot.
  • Sarcasm-Blind: Wade. In Tom's first scene, he sarcastically reponds to Wade's request for confirmation of his location by saying he's on a yacht in Barbados... with Rihanna. When Tom ammends this after Wade asks for pics, by saying he's parked by the speed trap, Wade expresses surprise that he was able to get back so quickly since Barbados is in the ocean.
  • Sassy Black Woman: Rachel, Maddie's sister and Tom's Obnoxious In Law who is always trying to separate Tom from Maddie.
  • Self-Deprecation: In the second trailer, Sonic describes himself as "an extremely handsome package" in his very first line, implying his design from the first trailer was not.
  • Sequel Hook: Two of them, both once the movie is over.
    • Just before the credits roll, Robotnik has gone even more insane while living on the Mushroom Planet and shaved himself bald but still has one of Sonic's energized quills, which he vows to use in order to get back to Earth.
    • In The Stinger, Tails has used a portal ring of his own to cross over into Earth, and he starts looking for Sonic.
  • Shock and Awe: Sonic's body conducts electricity when he's using his Super Speed. He produces enough while running to cause a blackout across the entire Pacific Northwest.note  It's quickly revealed that Sonic has no idea how to control it at first - when he starts sparking and glowing while upset during the highway chase, his reaction is a panicked "Not again!"
  • Shout Out:
    • In the prologue, Sonic describes Longclaw, the owl who raised him, as "Obi-Wan Kenobi if he had a beak and ate mice".
    • Sonic gives this little tidbit when the Echidna Tribe showed up during his monologue about his childhood:
    • In his rambling assault against Major Bennington, Dr. Robotnik asks Bennington if he ever read Charlotte's Web, saying that the book ends with the death of the titular spider after she lays an egg sac. He then compares Charlotte's egg sac to his ovular white drones.
    • Sonic's slow-motion sequence in the bar is accompanied by pop music, homaging Peter Maximoff from the X-Men films.
    • When Tom helps a duck and her ducklings cross a street, he addresses them as "Donald, Daisy, Daffy..."
    • Sonic is a huge fan of The Flash, owning and reading a lot of his comics.
    • Sonic is shown peeping on Tom and Maddie's movie nights over the years he has spent in secret at Green Hills, and Sonic's favorite is Speed. Sonic even imitates Dennis Hopper's famous "Pop quiz, hotshot" and notes that Keanu Reeves is a national treasure.
    • Another film Sonic briefly watches is The Naked Gun.
    • Wade comments on how Robotnik and his men remind him of the Men in Black, but they aren't "as likeable or charming as Will Smith". He later asks if they're going to wipe his memory when they leave, referencing the Neuralyzer used frequently in the franchise.
    • While fleeing the roadside bar, Sonic slides across the police car's hood like Bo and Luke do in The Dukes of Hazzard.
    • The scene where Maddie gives him smelling salts:
      Sonic: GOTTAGOFAST! (runs around the kitchen like a lunatic before stopping to stand on top of the kitchen island) Where am I? What year is it? Is The Rock president?!
    • Sonic flosses after overturning Robotnik’s tank and when he gets his room. Flossing is a dance which has become so synonymous with Fortnite that many people don't even know its actual name and just call it "The Fortnite Dance".
    • When Sonic takes the wheel of the pickup truck:note 
      Sonic: I feel just like Vin Diesel! It's all about family Tom!
    • Part of Robotnik's dance, particularly when he goes "headless", is a tribute to Dick Van Dyke.
    • Once Tom reaches Rachel's house, he's holding a suspicious bag (containing Sonic). Being distrustful of him, she asks if he's hiding something illegal in the bag, such as plutonium or e-mails. ("Yes, it's plutonium.")
    • According to co-writer Pat Casey, Robotnik shaving his head with a piece of metal is a reference to Marlon Brando's charcter in Apocalypse Now.
  • Showdown at High Noon: The climax feature this when Sonic manages to revive and faces down Robotnik on a street in Green Hills, Montana who arms all his missiles toward him and ready to launch, Tom telling the citizens to clear off and let the two settle it. Both stare down each other intensely before making their moves.
  • Skewed Priorities: Sonic gets into an argument with Tom upon finding out he wants to move from Green Hills just as Robotnik manages to locate their truck and sends a ground drone after it. Even when it starts attacking the car, he still continues to argue with him about it.
  • Slapstick Knows No Gender: The Bar Brawl has both men & women participating in it, and everyone present gets disabled by Sonic (objective) moments later.
  • Something We Forgot: After defeating Robotnik, Tom and Maddie talk to each other for a bit. Eventually Tom mentions Rachel, resulting in the two of them realizing that she's still tied to a chair back at her house in San Francisco.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: The infamous use of Coolio's "Gangsta's Paradise" in the first trailer is not only lyrically-inappropriate for the context of promoting a Sonic the Hedgehog movie, but it's also slow-paced and moody, clashing significantly with Sonic's inherent focus on being fun and fast. The second trailer at least makes up for this by using a more thematically-appropriate and energetic cover of "Blitzkrieg Bop" by The Ramones for the bulk of its action sequences and "Supersonic" by J.J.Fad for the fun parts.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: While on the road, Sonic asks to stop at a tourist trap for the world's largest rubber band ball. As he's being told that they're not going to stop, Sonic's already gone. He returns with an armful of rubber band balls, a monogrammed baseball cap on his head and a paddle ball a moment later, admitting it was "lame".
    Sonic: The gift shop was cool, though! [bounces the paddle ball rapidly as Tom stares in disbelief]
  • Sticky Bomb: The little drone that cut off the the roof of Tom's truck has a sticky bomb as the head. Sonic and Tom have a hard time pulling it off their hands until Sonic manages to do so with a branch, just before it explodes.
  • The Stinger: Two of them, both of which happen mid-credits and double as Sequel Hooks.
    • The first sequence, which happens after the closing title just before the credits actually start rolling, features Robotnik, still banished in Mushroom Planet for months and having fallen into insanity, shaving his head and growing his mustache to assume his signature form from the games. He also has one of Sonic's quills in his possession and is confident he can use it to return to Earth. However, he's gone so nuts that he has a Companion Cube in the form of a rock that he refers to as Agent Stone.
    • The second one, taking place mid-credits, has Tails make his on-screen film debut by using one of Sonic's rings to land on Earth, having been unable to locate him back on Sonic's World. Using a tracking device he built, he discovers Sonic's location at Green Hills, Montana. Overjoyed, he jumps off a cliff and performs his signature Propeller Flying ability before heading to the town.
  • Super Speed:
    • Sonic. At one point Sonic zooms past Tom's police cruiser. The car's radar gun clocks Sonic's speed at 760 miles per hour, which is just under Mach 1. He also moves so quickly around a baseball diamond that he causes an EMP that causes a gigantic blackout in the United States' Pacific Northwest. He also speed reads a stack of comics on The Flash, moves fast enough to play table tennis and baseball with himself, and runs fast enough to be in multiple locations at once. He can use his power to enter Bullet Time, with everything around him appearing to stand still. Robotnik uses this against Sonic with one of his quills, able to enter the same state to keep up the chase.
    • Much like Sonic, Tails can move incredibly fast. He flies from the top of a cliff overlooking Green Hills into the town proper in just a few seconds, leaving an orange trail behind him.
  • Surprise Creepy: Dr. Robotnik is, in general, hilarious due to being Dr. Robotnik as portrayed by Jim Carrey. However, every so often that humor is undercut by a line or implication or threat that come across as legitimately scary. Much like the source material.
  • Tagline:
    • "Try to keep up."
    • "A whole new speed of hero."
    • "Gotta. Go. Fast."
    • "When the world needs a hero... Think fast."
    • "If you were me, you'd be in your seat by now."
    • "Is that all you got?"
    • "Every hero has a genesis."
    • "Speed is his second name"
    • "Roses are red. Sonic is blue. Earth needs a hero. A hedgehog will do!"
    • "A Hedgehog Becomes A Hero."
    • "Don't Blink. You Might Miss It."
    • "Super villain vs Super Sonic"
    • "Racing into theaters soon."
    • "This Valentine's Day, put a ring on it."
    • "Chillin’ vs Villain"
  • Talking to Themself:
    • Due to spending over ten years with no-one else to, Sonic has developed a habit of talking to himself.
    • In the first post-credits scene, Robotnik, after spending over 83 days alone, has gotten into the habit of ranting to himself.
  • Take Me Instead: Subverted. Dr. Robotnik confronts Tom where he's hidden Sonic (though at the time just knows him as the "anomaly") and threatens him with one of his robots. Sonic shows himself, begging him not to hurt Tom. This causes the Doctor to scream in surprise, which Tom takes advantage of by knocking Robotnik out with a punch to the face while he's distracted.
  • Take That!: Sonic views a planet covered in mushrooms with disdain, stating "I hate mushrooms" which has been confirmed by writer Patrick Casey to be a jab at a certain other video game franchise which used a lot of mushroom imagery and served as the Sonic games main rival for a long time.
  • Tempting Fate: When Sonic and Tom have fun and cross off most of the items off of Sonic's bucket list, Sonic asks Tom "what could possibly happen?". Then they get approached by three rough guys looking for trouble.
  • That Came Out Wrong: While Tom and Maddie try to sneak Sonic into a building through a luggage bag in the first trailer, the two people next to them can hear Sonic and ask if his child is in his bag. Tom says no, but then clarifies that "yes, it's a child, but it's not mine", which prompts the other two people to walk away looking visibly weirded out.
  • Theme Tune Cameo: A brief snippet of the Green Hill Zone theme plays during the Paramount logo, and later a piano-based rendition is heard while the Wachowskis paint their house. The theme from the introductory movie of Sonic Mania accompanies the prologue.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Sandwich: After the bar fight, the food Tom had bought for himself and Sonic earlier falls off the front of his truck as they run from angry truckers. Sonic also never gets the buffalo wings he ordered.
  • Thinking Up Portals: The main power of the Power Rings themselves is to open up doorways to different places and worlds. Longclaw first shows their ability by using one Ring to send young Sonic to Earth.
  • This Is My Story: The movie begins with Sonic running through the streets of San Francisco, being chased by Robotnik. He narrates up to the point that the story catches up.
    "So, I know what you're thinking; 'why is that incredibly handsome hedgehog being chased by a madman with a mustache from the Civil War?' Well, to be honest, it feels like I've been running my whole life. Is this too much? Am I going too fast? It's kinda what I do. You know what? Let's back up."
  • Toilet Humour:
    • During the Bullet Time sequence in the Bar Brawl, Sonic takes time to wrap up two people with almost all the toilet paper present in the restroom. Sonic later comments that the next person who uses the restroom there will have almost nothing to work with.
    • Sonic farts at one point. When Tom asks what he ate, Sonic replies that it was (probably) a chili dog.
  • Trademark Favorite Food:
    • Sonic's is Chili cheese dogs, as has become typical for the character. He tasted his first ones at the bar, since because the hot wings he originally ordered never came on time, he tried (and accordingly ate an entire basket of) chili dogs instead during his slow-motion run through the Bar Brawl.
    • Tom being a cop loves donuts. He is said to eat donuts everyday and revolves his life around donuts by not just eating them but treating them like toys or imaginary friends to talk to.
    • Robotnik, surprisingly, likes Agent Stone's lattes, and may even be keeping him around for this purpose.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: The first trailer ends with Dr. Robotnik marooned on a mushroom world, bald and sporting a giant mustache – finally making him resemble his videogame counterpart, which only happens in the first stinger.
  • Tyrannosaurus rex: During his dance number, Robotnik pretends to get chased and eaten by a virtual T. rex.
  • Understatement: After Sonic sets off an EMP that knocks out power for a good portion of the country, the government wants to do something about this blackout, and Vice Chairman Walters suggests sending in a "lab rat with teeth" to handle it. They quickly realize that Walters means Dr. Robotnik, who quickly proves to be an absolute nutcase of a Big Bad.
    Air Force Chief of Staff: You're not suggesting who I think you're suggesting...
    Vice Chairman Walters: I know, he's a little weird.
    Air Force Chief of Staff: "Weird"?! He's a psychological tire fire!
  • Unperson:
    • Robotnik threatens to do this to Tom to get him to reveal Sonic's location.
    Tom: Hey, tough guy, I'm a cop. You're threatening an officer.
    Robotnik: How can you threaten somebody who never existed?
    • At the end of the film, Dr. Robotnik is banished to another planet by Sonic, and upon doing so, the government, who never liked him anyway and only hired him because they had to, is quick to erase all traces of him from existence. When questioned about Robotnik by Tom, a military official says "no such person exists".
  • Villains Out Shopping: There's a scene with Robotnik enthusiastically dancing and getting down to "Where Evil Grows" by The Poppy Family in his lair (complete with red disco lighting and being chased by a virtual T. rex) while Sonic's quill is being scanned, only to be surprised by Agent Stone standing nearby and watching with his coffee.
    Robotnik: AAAAAAAGH!
    Stone: I just thought you might like a latte with steamed Austrian goat milk.
    Robotnik ...What do I look like, an imbecile? Of course I want a latte. I LOVE THE WAY YOU MAKE THEM!
  • Wedgie: Sonic pulls one off on a hostile biker during the bar fight.
  • Wham Shot:
    • In the first stinger, Robotnik is seemingly helpless with no way back home. Then he pulls up the tube containing one of Sonic's quills, declaring he'll be back sooner than later.
    • A big one for the fans. In the mid-credits scene, a new ring portal opens up somewhere in the forest. Who's the first person we see leap out of it? None other than Miles "Tails" Prower.
  • What the Fu Are You Doing?: Sonic is seen twirling nunchucks at one point, while making Funny Bruce Lee Noises... and he ends up whacking himself in the face with them and falling to the floor.
    Sonic: OH! [pained] I'm Okay!
  • What Happened to the Mouse?:
    • Agent Stone disappears once Robotnik heads to San Francisco, with his fate unknown. It's implied that the military may have arrested him.
    • The military personnel that Robotnik meets with in Green Hills are nowhere to be seen after Robotnik tracks Sonic to Tom's house.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?:
    • Despite ostensibly having more in common with a human than he does with an animalnote  the simple fact that he isn't human paints all of Sonic's initial encounters with people. It's also Robotnik's reason for being unbelievably blase about his survival or lack thereof, but that comes off more as an excuse given he treats everyone in similar capacity.
    • Subverted when Maddie sees him for the first time; she's initially surprised but says even if he's a blue alien hedgehog he's still a person.
  • Where the Hell Is Springfield?: The only thing we know about Green Hills is that it's in Montana.
  • White and Red and Eerie All Over: Dr. Robotnik's various drones and tech all share the same white paintjobs and ovoid shapes, with red Glowing Mechanical Eyes and Tron Lines. Said drones are portrayed as much deadlier than the Badniks of the main franchise.
  • "World of Cardboard" Speech: Sonic spends the whole movie terrified of being caught and trying to follow the last thing he was told by Longclaw which was to run away if he would be caught so nobody can use his "power". During his final round with Robotnik, Sonic changes his mind and calls out that he's not running.
    Sonic: This is my power, and I'm not using it to run away anymore. I'm using it to protect. my. friends.
  • Worf Had the Flu: When Robotnik comes into town looking for Sonic, he evacuates his hiding place to find a safe spot to ring portal away but gets caught by Tom, who hits him with a tranquilizer dart. He wakes up a few minutes later, but admits he is too drowsy to run away and needs Tom's help to escape. His first attempt at fighting a Robotnik drone was a very clumsy surprise tackle.
  • You Can Talk?: Maddie asks Tom incredulously if Sonic can speak.
  • You Have Got to Be Kidding Me!: Later in the film, Tom talks to Maddie about using Rachel's truck, since Tom's vehicle is totalled. Rachel's response is to quote this word for word.
  • You Shall Not Pass!: Longclaw's Last Stand involves guarding the ring portal that she sent Sonic through, facing down the advancing echidna tribe so it has time to close.


♫ So I run (Yeah, yeah), keep me up
Creep on me, they speak on me
They slow down when they bring me up like
(huh)
Speed me up (Speed, yeah). ♫
 
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Alternative Title(s): Sonic The Hedgehog

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Dr. Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik

The government didn't want to work with him, and the military can't stand him; within minutes of meeting the military, he immediately declares himself superior to Major Bennington and mouths off to him.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (6 votes)

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Main / InsufferableGenius

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Main / InsufferableGenius

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