Poke a man intrigued
I might not be the best person to review a Pokémon movie because the lore is very foreign to me. It’s not watching a masked cape crusader take revenge on his city because his parents were killed in the same streets, this is a completely new world but because I watched the movie and have the chance to write this, I will try to review the movie to the best of my ability.
Hollywood has had a bad history for video game adaptations and even a worse history for Japanese franchise adaptation but it should be a surprise that the mixture of the two is the one to click perfectly. The movie is an extension of the Pokémon lore that has video games, an animation movie, comics, manga and basically every type of nerd bibliography but the story is more an adaptation of a video game by the same name. So how was the movie?
Right off the bat we meet the yellow fuzzy guy with rosy cheeks, a lightning bolt-shaped tail and that cute face that make girls shout “aaaaw” when they see him for the first time. Then he has this deeply sarcastic, wisecracking voice and you are forced to love the guy even more. Ryan Reynolds is the man. Maybe he has been so good as Deadpool that we all forgot how his voice sounded before that but detective Pikachu was basically the family friendly deadpool fox tried last year. He is the face, the voice and the mood of the movie and we have all reason to love that.
The film’s young hero is Tim (Justice Smith), a boy who hears of the death of his father and with the help of Pikachu goes on an adventure to unearth the truth. What makes Tim, a self-proclaimed pokephobe carry this fuzeball with him is because for some reason he could hear him when other people just hear ‘pika’ and Pikachu can also hear him which makes them the best duo in a city filled with, both humans and Pokémon living in a harmonious partnership.
The movie is directed by Rob Letterman, who really did a fine job juggling between the CGI heavy live action and the animated work of the Pokémon. The Pokémon’s texture is so real but you could also see the animation. The movie comes alive and the detail are exactly where they need to be to make you forget that that young man is carrying an imaginary something. The scenes shift from gritty-neon cityscapes of Ryme City to the tame grasslands without much effort.
The winning aspect of the movie is the story. The story has just enough flair to make you question the villains as much as the direction. There are a number of deserved twists as there are enough dramatic standoffs. The humor is well balanced out but sometimes might be right on the nose. The film feels like a child’s movie and that’s a good thing. It has a simple story, a lot (and I mean a lot) of Pokémon and a refreshing feel to it.
The only wrong for the film is personal, but probably shared by quite a few, is it’s a fun fan service to its Pokémon fans. I’m sure someone who played the games or watched the anime will enjoy the film way more than me. There is a song at the middle where people started to sing and I was left clueless what the song was, that was how I felt watching all these Pokémons on screen.
That is not to say the movie was bad, on the contrary it’s refreshing, it’s fun, it’s almost therapeutic. No disappointments, no surprises. So go out to see the movie if you can and bring the whole family too, they’ll love you for it.
Ps. there is no post credit scene but there is a song by Kygo and Rita Ora, who by the way has a cameo in the film. Till next time,
facebook: Kelvin Kyle
By NAICCON on May 10, 2019