I was one of those kids who wasn’t allowed to watch/play Pokemon growing up, so I have virtually no knowledge of all of the types of Pokemon or what they do. That definitely takes me outside of the target demographic for this movie, as it became clear that Detective Pikachu is primarily a nostalgia piece. However, as a couple of my buddies and I were sitting with a couple of hours to kill at a restaurant right across the street from a tiny little theater in Stowe, Vermont, seeing Detective Pikachu seemed like a great idea. First of all, the Stowe Cinema 3Plex was one of the coolest little family owned theaters I have ever been to; but that doesn’t mean the movie was particularly special. Let’s get into it.
Let’s start with the most crucial element of any live-action movie, acting. The main two actors in this movie were Justice Smith and Kathryn Newton, both of whom were just bad. That is the simplest way to put it. The longer they were on screen the more it felt like one of the crappy Disney Channel original movies that never have good acting, with the exception of High School Musical of course.
Then there was the twist villain, which was also bad. Not only was it relatively predictable but it just seemed unnecessary. Come to think of it, most everything to do with the plot seemed unnecessary. Maybe the movie, in general, was unnecessary. It wasn’t as funny as I’d hoped and you don’t really get to see many Pokemon fights. So why is it certified fresh on Rotten Tomatoes?
My best answer to the previous question is nostalgia. The movie pretty much revolved around early generation Pokemon for that specific reason. Honestly, I felt like the CGI used to bring the Pokemon to life was pretty good. There was a lot of it, but it looked pretty clean and my friends that actually grew up with Pokemon were satisfied with how they all looked. The only other redeeming quality to this movie is the feel-good ending. Ryan Reynolds as a real-life human actually appears for a quick scene which I wasn’t expecting, and it is a pretty nice moment. It did feel a bit forced but I’ll let it slide because of all the worse things that I have already complained about.
I really don’t have a lot to say about this movie and therefore am giving it one of the shortest and most to-the-point reviews that I’ve ever written. For a non-Pokemon guy, it is tough to sit through because of the bad acting and sloppy writing. For a Pokemon lover, you might find some solace in the nostalgia that you will feel as you see all of the CGI Pokemon that you played with as a kid. I fit into the former of those two categories. It was definitely a let-down considering it is the first movie I’ve seen since watching Endgame. Oh well, it is what it is.