Over the weekend, I took my family to see Detective Pikachu at the movies. My eldest child is absolutely Pokemon-mad and has been playing Detective Pikachu (a separate Pokemon related game) on her DS since it came out. She has been absolutely amped for this movie and we were all happy to go along for the ride.
The first thing you have to know about Detective Pikachu is, that it’s not based on Ash and Pikachu, and the Kanto region adventure. This is a different Pikachu – a Detective Pikachu. He talks, sort of, and he investigates. This movie is more of a gritty cyber-punk action film, but is still pretty family friendly.
Directed by Rob Letterman (‘Monsters vs. Aliens’, ‘Shark Tale’)
Starring Ryan Reynolds, Justice Smith, Kathryn Newton, Bill Nighy, Ken Watanabe
In NZ theatres NOW
Prepare to be wowed
The CGI in this movie is impressive. I was a teenager when the Pokemon show and games were first released, and it was amazing to see what that world could look like in real life. The opening scenes with the rolling fields and open spaces, and the wild Pokemon moving through were exactly as I imagined. However, most of the movie is set in Ryme City, which is more dystopian and other-worldly. There’s not as much “gotta catch ‘em all” going on. Pokemon mostly roam free.
Without too many spoilers, the story follows Tim, on his journey to Ryme City after his father, Detective Harry Goodman, has a car accident. He gets dragged into the crash investigation by his father’s partner; the adorable sleuth, Detective Pikachu. A wannabe reporter, Lucy, pushes Tim and Pikachu closer to the truth with her own investigation.
Something for everyone
For the adults, there are plenty of laughs. Pikachu has all the best lines and Ryan Reynolds, who voices Pikachu, has excellent comedic timing. Quite a few people have been saying this is like “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?” for a new generation and I would definitely agree with that. Roger Rabbit was innovative for the time – a wise-cracking detective flick with cartoon characters walking around in real life. It’s quite similar in comedic tone as well.
For the kids, there’s a tonne of action and adventure, and Pokemon! There were a few quite intense moments in the film, where the characters seemed to be in danger. It is probably not much more intense than a later Harry Potter film. But I did worry my 7 year old would not handle it. I looked over at her and she was huddled a bit on her seat, but when I asked her if she was okay she had the biggest smile on her face. I think if your kid is a bit sensitive to violence or worries about earthquakes this wouldn’t be the film for you though.
Is Detective Pikachu a good movie?
After the movie ended, I asked if everyone enjoyed it and I got a resounding yes, from the youngest to the oldest in our group. I don’t think you have to know about Pokemon to enjoy the ride, but if your kids are Pokemon-mad like mine, this one would be unmissable.
Detective Pikachu is rated PG. Check with your local cinema for the audience ratings for these movies at the time of viewing. Find more information on ratings and classifications. Parental discretion is always advised.
For more visit the Detective Pikachu Movie website
Written by Kym Moore
When she isn’t herding kids or cats, Kym loves to drink craft beer, or share a whine and a wine with friends. She is also partial to a well-made cocktail. Her happy places include sitting on couch watching British Comedy and daydreaming. Lots of daydreaming.
Favourite artist: Bowie