If you’re a Pokemon fan, then you’ll know that everything currently is all about Detective Pikachu.
The build up for this film has been insane – Online discussions about the fact that Pikachu is furry (I mean of course he is guys… He’s a mouse), GAME offering exclusive Detective Pikachu Pokemon cards, and, the general increase in Bulbasaurs, Psyducks, Aipoms, Snubbulls, Flareons and Mr Mimes in Pokemon GO have all contributed to the hype build-up for this film.
Now, I’m more of a casual long term Pokemon fan, completed a few games, played some Pokemon GO, watched the first season of the anime on TV and the accompanying films… I’ve seen a little of the Alolan series as well, but MOST importantly, collected those awesome Pogz from crisps packets when I was younger (If you don’t know what Pogz are you are so missing out)… So as you can probably, tell I am not a hardcore Pokemon fan, but rather someone who casually enjoys it as part of their childhood memories. So with that being said, when a friend asked me to go see Detective Pikachu when it came out, I was happy to go. As with most of my reviews, there are SPOILERS ahead, so if you haven’t seen the film yet and want to go in completely blind… Then please do not read on – Go watch it… Then come back and share your thoughts with me.
The basic premise of the film is our main boy Tim Goodman lives out in the countryside; he used to dream of becoming a Pokemon trainer (Didn’t we all), but he ended up working a boring office job and seems to be the only person ever who doesn’t want or have a Pokemon buddy. We later learn that this is because he feels his dad abandoned him for Pokemon to be a detective in Rhyme City, where Pokemon and humans live side by side – At the beginning of the film we learn that Tim’s dad has unfortunately passed away in an accident, so Tim goes to the city to collect his dad’s things… This is where he meets and unusual Pikachu, who can talk… But only to him, and that’s where the adventure starts. Oh and of course there a pretty girl thrown into the mix.
Let’s start of by talking about Detective Deadpool… Sorry, I mean Detective Pikachu! Detective Pikachu is voiced by the lovely Ryan Reynolds, and in this film – unsurprisingly – Ryan Reynolds is again playing Ryan Reynolds. Now this is by no means a bad thing; I like the way Reynolds plays Pikachu in this film, kind of like a child friendly Deadpool. He’s sassy and funny, and at times a little self-pitying, but overall a pretty lovable and likeable character. Detective Pikachu’s story line is one we have seen many times before; character gets amnesia, character goes on a quest to find memories, discovers he may not have been a good person after all, before ultimately realising they were pure after all. Now it’s not a bad storyline, but it is pretty predictable; all the major plot lines and twists are reasonably easy to guess – They are pretty much laid out on a platter for you to put together. It’s still a pretty entertaining ride though, even if it is predictable. The other actors in the film do an excellent job, they all fit the roles well and act them well. Overall it is a well casted film and I have no complaints there.
The rest of the realistic Pokemon are actually pretty good. I think the Arcanines and Growliths are the ones that probably look as realistic as they can, but I think this is because it’s not hard to make a fluffy tiger dog, and they look close enough to something I’d expect to see walking down the streets. The Lickitung are satisfyingly cute and disgusting at the same time, and the Mr Mime are adequately creepy with their whisper-thin baby hairs on their head. There are lots of Pokemon to spot lurking in the background as well, so keep an eye out for your favourites! There is a sweet Togepi to be spotted, and of course we get to see a badass Charizard. Mewtwo of course makes an appearance, but sadly no Mew as of yet; we may have to wait for that one! But what I really want to talk about is the TRUE MVP Pokemon who completely won me over in this movie, in which their charm, their kindness and their straight-up purity sold me. I am of course talking about Bulbasaur, who were just too damn adorable for words in this movie; they were the best, convince me otherwise.
Overall I think this film is well worth the watch, for the realistic Pokemon alone. It’s only problem is that I think it suffers a little from slow pacing at times. There were times that I felt the film wasn’t quite moving along as quickly as I’d like it too to keep interest; regardless, it is cute, funny and sweet at times. It’s absolutely amazing to see realistic renditions of my favourite Pokemon just like something off of DeviantArt, and I really do think these are done so well that it makes the film worth watching alone. I would suggest this film to die-hard fans (Of course you guys will see it anyway), and people who just want something light and easy to watch. I wouldn’t necessarily say this is one that you should all rush out to the cinema to see, but it’s definitely worth the watch when the DVD’s and streaming services pick this one up. It’s sort of like that cosy Saturday evening family movie that you all sit down and eat popcorn, drink hot chocolate and wrap yourself up in a cosy blanket for snuggles kind of film. It gets a pretty solid 8/10 from me.