Better late than never, or so they say. After a few big distractions I finally got to see this movie and in the presence of about 50 boys under 10. What could possibly go wrong, right?
I’m pleased to say, nothing. The chatterbox audience seemed spellbound as soon as Pokemon Detective Pikachu began. The only comments were whispered names every time a new Pokemon came on scream, which quite frankly I was very thankful for. To be perfectly honest I knew very little about Pokemon, apart from seeing intermittent groups descend on Kings Park, only to disappear moments later. Consequently I wasn’t sure how I’d go. Thanks to the handy quick introduction at the beginning of the movie I was soon following along just fine.
The drama starts with a dramatic car crash. Detective Harry Goodman is dead. This 21 year old son Tim (Justice Smith) is summoned back to the police precinct where his father worked. There he’s given the keys to his fathers apartment. Having been estranged from his father for most of his life, Tim tentatively enters the apartment of a man so important to him, and yet one he barely knew. While rummaging through some of his workaholic fathers notes, he encounters Detective Pikachu (Ryan Reynolds).
In this land every human has a Pokemon to help them travel through life. Detective Pikachu was his fathers partner in crime, literally. Tim though, having not bought into the whole ‘life partner’ idea, is yet to bond with his own Pokemon.
When it becomes apparent that he and Detective Pikachu are the only Pokemon/Human combination to understand each other, he is forced to rethink. Whilst rethinking, a chance opening of a purple-gas filled vile soon sees the pair joining forces to fight of some rather unsavoury Pokemon. It seems that when Pokemon go bad, they really go bad.
If that’s not enough to contend with, enter television news cadet Lucy Stevens (Kathryn Newton) who casts doubt on what Tim’s father was up to. It’s not long before the three friends go on the ultimate Pokemon hunt to find out who is behind he purple gas. Along the way the trio meet Howard Clifford (he who can do no wrong, Bill Nighy), the man responsible for the whole Pokemon/Human universe. The movie takes some interesting twists and turns, eventually ending up in the ultimate Pokemon battle. I won’t say anymore.
Pokemon Detective Pikachu the movie stands on its own as a story. You don’t have to know anything about Pokemon to enjoy it. The movie offers glimpses of Gremlins, Alien and Avatar. But most of all the enjoyment of this movie comes down to the brilliant casting of Ryan Reynolds as Pikachu, think Dead Pool in a fluffy yellow suit, hilarious.
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