How much did someone with minimal Pokémon knowledge like the movie?
Growing up, I was not someone who was into Pokémon. I knew what it was, learned some basic information, but overall I thought it was a “guy” thing. That was little Meagan’s thought process, not mine now.
Over the years, I came to the conclusion it is something I would very much get into, but always sat in the back of my mind as, “I’ll get into it someday.” Then cue Detective Pikachu and I thought maybe this would be a good place to start. I did do some research before the movie, just to understand the basics and recognize the Pokemon, but for the most part, I didn’t know much about the world.
So a few good questions are: is it an enjoyable movie and can someone who doesn’t watch/play Pokémon follow it?
Well, there were numerous people snoring in the theater I went to…seriously two people were snoring.
The first thing I want to talk about is probably the thing I enjoyed the most which is the world. It’s pretty much ours but with Pokémon but seeing them within that world is what made the movie. How they interact with humans, the places they live depending on what type they are, and the design of them are pretty great. You can tell how much work was put into all of the details, even the Pokémon in the background.
However, the place we spend the most time in is Ryme City, a place where humans and Pokémon coexist and battles are outlawed. Again, I loved seeing the different Pokémon walking around with their humans and even the wilder ones just living in the city.
As someone who, like I said, isn’t that familiar with the world it’s pretty easy to catch on. Not all of the Pokémon are explained, that would take all movie, but they do a good job of explaining the ones relevant to the plot or at least addressing them by name. I usually wasn’t confused except when I didn’t know the name of a specific Pokémon.
The actual plot of the movie follows Tim, an insurance agent, who gets a call that his detective father died. Tim and his dad haven’t seen each other in years but he goes to his apartment and that’s where he meets his dad’s Pokémon, Pikachu, and if you didn’t already know, understands what Pikachu is saying.
Pikachu has no memory of what happened except that he feels Tim’s dad is alive and that’s what kickstarts their mission.
The chemistry between Tim and Pikachu is good. I liked in the beginning when Tim first discovers he can hear Pikachu and just loses it. Tim wanted to be a trainer when he was younger, but a family tragedy caused it to fall short.
Ryan Reynolds as Pikachu just made sense? The longer I heard his voice, the more I couldn’t picture Pikachu without it. It didn’t feel off and he stayed true to himself. I mean the jokes sounded like something Ryan Reynolds would say. It didn’t take me out of the movie that much though.
Lucy is another character whom Tim runs into as she’s an intern reporter following the case and trying to prove herself. She was fine, but I swear I kept thinking she had a hidden agenda. It also could’ve been the fact that I watched some reviews and learned there was a pretty unexpected twist and I kept trying to figure it out.
And guess what? I did NOT figure it out, so good job, Detective Pikachu.
The story isn’t hard to follow, I’m sure a lot of people could figure it out early on, but that doesn’t mean it was bad. There are plenty of reveals along the way to keep you guessing.
Except for that last twist…I’m still impressed.
The world is fun, the Pokémon are detailed and it makes you want to have one following you around and possibly blowing up from being too stressed (sorry Psyduck.) I actually wish they were involved more. There weren’t many battles (I guess taking place in a city that outlawed them makes sense) but I can also understand them not wanting to get TOO into the Pokemon lure just for people like me to follow along easier.
Overall, I do think it was enjoyable, a little slow in the beginning, but could be something people with minimal Pokemon knowledge would understand. If you know absolutely nothing about Pokemon and have never had an interest in it, then it won’t be for you…I think that goes without saying.
As for a rating, I’d give it 3.5/5 stars, a B for a letter grade, a movie you could turn on and watch and not just use as background noise.