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Pokemon Detective Pikachu (2019) Review

Gotta Catch A Better Third Act.

“Pika pika?”

Release Date: May 10th, 2019

Length: 1H 44M

Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Mystery.


I saw this film at an advanced screening, but wanted to sit on my thoughts for a little while, I also wasn’t particularly in the mood to write a review, but I think now is a good time.

I am not looking forward to writing this, I’ll be honest. I am not a big Pokemon fan, I grew up with the cards, the anime, the original movie, and I just got to the point where it wasn’t for me, and I stopped paying attention to it really. I tried to get into the games in my older years on the Nintendo Handheld systems, but it just didn’t do anything for me, but I know a lot of people absolutely adore Pokemon, and adore everything that surrounds it. I will say though in contrast, I was looking forward to this movie as I love Ryan Reynolds and I thought it was pretty funny that he was cast as Pikachu. So, I will not be reviewing this movie as a Pokemon fan, but as a fan of films in general with knowledge of Pokemon

Pokemon Detective Pikachu (2019) or just Detective Pikachu from here on out is a action, adventure, comedy and mystery film about a boy who meets a intelligent talking Pikachu, whose only want in the world is to become a Detective. In a world where humans and Pokemon exist together.

Detective Pikachu (2019) is directed by Rob Letterman. The only film of his I have seen is Goosebumps (2015). But he seems like he has done a lot of animation and live action work from his filmography. I genuinely enjoyed Goosebumps (2015), I thought that movie was a lot of fun. I felt too that Letterman did the absolute best that he could with the source material. The direction of this movie isn’t really what bothered me, it wasn’t perfect but its not something to nitpick.

Detective Pikachu (2019) stars Ryan Reynolds, Justice Smith, Kathryn Newton and Bill Nighy.

Ryan Reynolds filmography consists of Van Wilder (2002), Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle (2004), Blade: Trinity (2004), The Amityville Horror (2005), Waiting… (2005), Just Friends (2005), Smokin’ Aces (2006), Definitely, Maybe (2008), The Proposal (2009), The Voices (2014), Deadpool (2016), and Deadpool 2 (2018). I love Ryan Reynolds in pretty much everything he does, but he usually does it with flair, charm and style and even in this movie I felt like you had very much Ryan Reynolds as Ryan Reynolds, which isn’t a bad thing, but I felt like the script was lacking for him. There were some very funny one-liners from Ryan Reynolds, but there wasn’t much else. I feel like he did the best he could with the script provided for him.

Justice Smith’s filmography consists of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (2018). I don’t particularly know this actor too well, I do not even remember the character he played in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. But I didn’t mind this character much, pretty generic, but overall alright.

Kathryn Newton’s filmography consists of Bad Teacher (2011), Paranormal Activity 4 (2012), Lady Bird (2017), Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017), and Big Little Lies {TV Series} (2017-). I knew I recognized this actor when I saw her on screen, but couldn’t place where exactly (I watched Big Little Lies again recently so that must’ve been what sparked that thought). I thought she was great in this movie, and had great chemistry with Justice Smith.

Bill Nighy’s filmography consists of Love Actually (2003), Underworld (2003), Shaun Of The Dead (2004), Underworld: Evolution (2006), Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest (2006), Flushed Away (2006), Hot Fuzz (2007), Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (2007), Underworld: Rise Of The Lycans (2009), Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (2010), Rango (2011), Arthur Christmas (2011), About Time (2013), Destiny {Video Game} (2014), and Destiny 2 {Video Game} (2017). I think Bill Nighy is great, ever since I saw him in Love Actually (2003), I have enjoyed his work. I totally forgot he was the head vampire in Underworld as well. I thought he too did the best that he could with the script in this movie, not amazing but I enjoyed watching him.

I thought the CGI in this movie was pretty good though, a bit spotty in places, but overall it was fine and did what it needed to do. I liked Pikachu for roughly the entire movie. Psyduck for me absolutely stole the show, I would watch it again just for him. Also there was A LOT of fuzziness, all the Pokemon had really great detail and really fluffy fur, I almost wish it was in 3D so you could just reach out and touch the fur. Especially the detail on Pikachu and Psyduck was impeccable.

There were a couple of standout scenes involving some of my old favourite Pokemon – Charizard mainly, that I thought was really cool and really well done.

My issues with this movie mainly come in the third act. I was into it up until a certain point in the movie where my taste became to sour on it. The comedy started to get stale, I wasn’t much involved anymore with the plot, and when that happens I start to overanalyze the film to entertain myself. Thats what happened here. The twist, the script and especially the ending. The twist was really barebones to me, I didn’t see it coming, but it wasn’t a revelation. The script was very weak in some places, absolutely. But the biggest atrocity to me was the ending. The ending felt super super rushed to me. Its like they had a bunch of cool ideas they wanted to sneak in the runtime, but they didn’t know how to end the movie. I didn’t feel like it hit any sort of mark for me, and I felt like at the end it was a waste of almost 2 hours.

I just think I expected more from this movie. I think had I been a super big Pokemon fan, I could get by its shortcomings. Its far from a perfect movie. But those with small children or fans of the Pokemon series will absolutely eat this up.

I give Pokemon Detective Pikachu a 2.5/5.

Until Next Time!


**If you’re on the fence about it, absolutely wait for Netflix to get it**

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