Movie Review: Detective Pikachu Wins the Battle!

Movie Review: Detective Pikachu Wins the Battle!
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About the Author

Dylan J. Mayberry

Dylan J. Mayberry

Dylan J. Mayberry is an aspiring actor and has a strong passion for film. He was born in Brampton Ontario and has recently moved to Oakville. He is a graduate of Acting for Film & Television from Niagara college.

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In the case of the largest media franchise of all-time, making a good movie is like battling an opponent with a type advantage against you: difficult, but not impossible. And Detective Pikachu somehow manages to overcome all odds with only a few hits that may require a potion. It is a charming film with plentiful amounts of wonder and awe, but if you don’t understand the metaphors I just used, it will be tougher for you.

Shortly after the film opens, you are almost overwhelmed with shot after shot of the adorable, cool, and wonderful Pokemon. It’s enough to fill any fan of the series with amazement as they see their beloved franchise practically come to life in a way never seen. But for the uninitiated, it takes 20 minutes before we are told what a Pokemon even is. Elements like this are why the movie works, but also requires some extra work on the part of the viewer.

Our story follows Tim Goodman; young adult, boring job, and losing friends fast. Upon hearing of the tragic death of his father, he travels to Ryme City to collect his things. But when he discovers a talking Pikachu in his father’s apartment who tells him his father is not dead, it’s time for these two reluctant partners to solve themselves a mystery.

What makes this movie work is that it genuinely feels like a Pokemon story. Anyone who has grown up with, is currently growing up with, or even just gotten into the franchise will feel right at home here. The world is brimming with these fantastic creatures, there will never be a moment where fans, especially younger children won’t catch one and feel delighted.

Photo Credit: Warner Bros.

Throughout the film there is this pervasive feeling; from the moment it starts to the second it ends you can feel it. Heart. There’s this great feeling that the whole team creating this film genuinely cared about making something people would like, and it clearly shows. Invoking similar feelings to last years Bumblebee, Detective Pikachu warms your heart with a simple message, our relationships with others is what makes us who we are.

Special mention goes to Justice Smith, who performs his role as Tim Goodman with some emotional sincerity that tugs on your heart strings. Which is further complimented by the always funny Ryan Reynolds playing the titular character. The two work off each other in a very nice and playful way that leads to the film’s most emotional moments.

The film can’t win completely without losing some HP however. The final act is a little too ridiculous that almost drops what the rest of the film had been holding up so well. It is saved from falling flat on its face by the good performances, but it doesn’t stop from feeling a little too strange… in a world of Pokemon… magical monsters with superpowers.

Most people will like Detective Pikachu. Pokemon fans, like myself, will probably love it for all the nostalgia it invokes when watching. Those who may only be aware of the franchise, and don’t know what psychic type is weak too, will have some paying attention to do.

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Despite the type advantage, Detective Pikachu manages to land a critical hit and win the battle.

Detective Pikachu
8 out of 10

PG, 1hr 44 mins, Fantasy Action Adventure.
Directed by Rob Letterman.
Starring Justice Smith, Ryan Reynolds, Kathryn Newton, Bill Nighy.
Now playing at Film.ca Cinemas, Cineplex Winston Churchill and Cineplex Oakville
& VIP.

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