Sonic The Hedgehog 2 Is On Track To Be The Biggest Video Game Movie Ever

Sonic The Hedgehog 2 Is On Track To Be The Biggest Video Game Movie Ever
Screenshot: Paramount / Kotaku

Paramount Pictures is in the green bill zone. The studio’s latest tentpole, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, had an absolutely massive weekend, bringing in $US71 ($99) million at the domestic box office for a total international cume of $US141 ($196) million. It’s the biggest opening ever for a movie based on a video game.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2, a sequel to 2020’s Sonic the Hedgehog, is the second in a series of semi-animated adaptations of games about a blue hedgehog who can outrun the sound barrier. Ben Schwartz voices the titular hedgehog. Idris Elba voices Knuckles the punch-happy echidna, alongside Colleen O’Shaughnessey as the flying fox Tails. Sonic the Hedgehog 2 also gives screen time to some live-action megastars. James Marsden reprises his role from the first film, with cheekbones so sharp you almost forget he plays a cop. Jim Carrey also makes a return as Dr. Robotnik, though told Access Hollywood earlier this month that he’s considering “retiring.”

The previous record for “biggest opening for a movie based on a video game” technically belongs to Sonic the Hedgehog, which clocked an impressive $US58 ($81) million domestically. But that flick came out on a holiday weekend, where tallies get an extra day. Detective Pikachu, a loose adaptation about what would happen if the Pokémon Coliseum spin-off games were given their fair due, opened to $US54 ($75) million on a standard weekend. You do the maths.

Other films with notable debuts are Rampage ($US35 ($49) million), The Angry Birds Movie ($US38 ($53) million), and the Uncharted movie ($US44 ($61) million, also on a holiday weekend).

To date, no film based on a video game has crossed the mythical three-comma mark established by — and, at this point, expected of — films based on comic books. As for what film in the narrow category has made the most, that honour belongs to the abjectly terrible Warcraft, which sputtered at the domestic box office but went on to gross nearly $US440 ($611) million over the course of its international run. If Sonic the Hedgehog 2’s muscular opening is any indication, it could well go on to top that.

But while Sonic the Hedgehog 2 has already shattered one financial record and stands poised to break another, it’s not quite topping charts in terms of critical success. The film, as of this writing, sits at a 67 on Rotten Tomatoes, the definitive film review aggregation site. Detective Pikachu? 68.

 

Comments

  • “But while Sonic the Hedgehog 2 has already shattered one financial record and stands poised to break another, it’s not quite topping charts in terms of critical success. The film, as of this writing, sits at a 67 on Rotten Tomatoes.”

    That’s the critic score, yes. But the audience score is 97%, which goes to underline the deepening divide between professional critics and the general public.

    I took my kid to go see both. I didn’t mind the first one, but thought the sequel was better, with heaps of cool little easter eggs that gamers of my vintage, who grew up with consoles like the Megadrive, would appreciate.

    It’s not high art but it’s fun and that’s more than can be said of a lot of other movies these days.

    • There’s always been a divide between professional critics and audiences, they often judge on different criteria and view it through different lenses.
      (Especially kids films)
      You kind of match the divide with your own final comment, it’s not high art (critics) but it’s fun. (General audience and a parent)

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