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Cracking the case
Alex Young
Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Bringing the wild and mysterious creatures of Pokemon to life, “Detective Pikachu” is an exciting comedic movie that does a great job representing the Pokemon franchise. Based off the hit selling game series, Pokemon, more specifically the spin off game released for the Nintendo 3DS, “Detective Pikachu,” the movie was released in theatres on May 10, 2019. This movie is considered to be one of the best video game to movie adaptations, and for a good reason. “Detective Pikachu” blends comedy and story very well, with compelling characters, and an interesting world with creatures that grabs the viewer’s attention.

The basic story of the movie takes place in Ryme City, where people and pokemon live together in harmony. Tim Goodman (Justice Smith) comes to visit the city when he receives a phone call about the death of his father, Ace Detective Harry Goodman. Due to a strained relationship with his father, Tim reluctantly comes to the city alone. While in the city, he goes to his father's apartment, where he meets a Pikachu that he is able to talk to and understand. This Pikachu was his father’s partner Pokemon and worked alongside Harry on detective cases. Now Pikachu has lost his memory, but thoroughly believes that Harry is not dead. Most of the movie involves Pikachu and Tim running across the city to try and solve the mystery of Harry Goodman.

In the story, Tim and Pikachu are accompanied by Lucy Stevens (Kathryn Newton) and her Psyduck. Lucy is an intern for a large news corporation who is trying to find a breaking story and believes the disappearance of Harry Goodman is the story she needs. As they investigate the case, they are confronted with another mystery that seems to align with the disappearance of Harry. This mystery is of the most powerful Pokemon, Mewtwo. This Pokemon was artificially created and has been lost for many years, but was recently found and put into a researching facility.

It is found out that Mewtwo was being used to create a purple gas called R, which is used to make Pokemon go wild and become more powerful. R is supposedly being created for Roger Clifford (Chris Geere), in order to get back at his father, and founder of Ryme city, Howard Clifford (Bill Nighy). Although Mewtwo is able to break out of captivity, on the same night that Harry supposedly died. This leads Tim to theorize that Mewtwo was the cause of his father's disappearance

The story involves many plot twists, and while some are predictable, they still offer to give the story more excitement. By the end of the movie, the case is solved and Tim decides to stay in Ryme city along with Pikachu, and perhaps start a job as a detective.

The movie’s story is decent, same goes for the characters, nothing about them truly stands out as outgoing or special, but they are not especially bad either. The movie sets up and interesting world and gives the viewer a good story to follow along with. The characters, while being interesting, may have needed a little more depth in order to make more of an impact on the audience. Out of the cast, one character avoids this, and that is Pikachu himself, voiced by Ryan Reynolds. Pikachu is played as a sarcastic, caffeine loving, confident cop, who is well aware of his own flaws. This differs heavily form Pokemon’s typical depiction of Pikachu, being cute and innocent, but powerful. This leads to Pikachu being the source of a lot of the movie’s comedy, as well as being  a standout character in the film.

One aspect of the movie that grabbed people's attention, especially fans of the Pokemon series, is the CGI Pokemon featured prominently in the movie. The models all looked good and portrayed the fantastical creatures well. They look true to the source material, while still taking liberties to make them look realistic. This was very impressive in the beginning of the movie, when the camera would pan around Ryme city and dozen of types of Pokemon would appear, all looking great in their more realistic design. The only problem is that after the first twenty minutes of the movie, all of the Pokemon had been shown off. Of course it is unrealistic to expect the movie to incorporate all 809 Pokemon, but it by the end of the movie, it just felt as if the same Pokemon were being shown over and over again and felt a bit repetitive. Though this is understandable as there could only be so many Pokemon included due to time and budget restraints.

Overall, “Detective Pikachu” is a fun film that brings to life the fantasy world of Pokemon in a fantastical way. While the story is nothing special, and neither are the characters, with the exception of Pikachu, the movie makes up for this with the wonderful world it sets up and the Pokemon themselves. The movie takes the fantasy world form the Pokemon franchise and turned it into an intriguing realistic setting.. “Detective Pikachu” is still being shown in theatres across the country in both normal screenings and 3D. For its wonderful portrayal of the Pokemon franchise and good comedy, the movie deserves a 7/10 rating.