Fun for the young at heart: Review of Pokémon Detective Pikachu
This is definitely a film for the Pokémon fan, but surprisingly, it’s also a fun ride for those who’ve never played, and don’t know what a Pikachu is.
Many things work in favour of Pokémon Detective Pikachu, the most significant being the fun factor — there are witty one-liners, intelligent humour, a smart script. The film also has a well-crafted plot, and a story that is emotional but never soppy.
In a world where most humans and Pokémon live in harmony, the film follows Tim Goodman (Justice Smith), who dreamed of being a Pokémon trainer but must give up that dream when his mother dies, to go in search of a father serving as a detective in another city.
Along the way he meets Pikachu, and the two get into exciting adventures where they encounter Pokémon good and bad, and try to solve the mystery of where his father is, and why there are rumours that he’s dead.
The first live-action / animated film in the Pokémon franchise ticks all the boxes for an enjoyable quest tale — a reluctant hero, a funny but powerful sidekick, a pretty and smart female protagonist and a deadly villain. The last half hour is a bit chaotic — good guys turns bad, bad guys turn good and then some of them turn back again; Pokémon are popping up all over the place and it’s a little hard to keep track of who’s who.
But Smith carries the film effectively throughout, keeping you invested in his character of a fumbling, confused 21-year-old with a heart of gold.
All in all, the film’s a fair fit for young adults and adults who want to take a trip down memory lane.