Pokémon Detective Pikachu Electrocutes Joy

“Oh, that’s a twist. That’s very twisty.”


Photo courtesy of IMDB

Solomon Kenworthy

     Detective Pikachu was released in 2019, and was directed by Rob Letterman. The film stars Justice Smith, Kathryn Newton, and Ryan Reynolds. When his father goes missing, Tim Goodman must team up with his father’s Pokémon partner, Pikachu to solve the disappearance. 

     Justice Smith’s performance as Tim shows that with a good script, he can be quite compelling (Looking at you Fallen Kingdom). Smith brings a good mix of emotion. Kathryn Newton is very over the top, which at parts works for the film. Other times it does feel like a little too much. Ryan Reynolds as Pikachu steals the film. His voice acting is perfect and line delivery is fantastic. 

     The script does an excellent job at blending adult humor with more child friendly humor. The call backs to the video games and TV show feel earned. You don’t have to know anything about the games or TV show to understand the film. It’s not the smartest script on the planet, and you’ll most likely be able to see every twist and turn coming from a mile away. It’s a very basic plot. 

     The visuals are majestic. The design of each Pokémon are well thought out and flat-out adorable . They utilize each of the creature’s various attributes in clever ways. For example, having Jigglypuff singing in the bar, and having the Lickitung lick Tim’s face on the train. The action is entertaining and shot very well. A battle around halfway through the film between Pikachu and Charizard stands out.

      There is a continuity error towards the end of the film. In one shot Tim is on one of the top floors of a 50 floor plus building, and in the next he’s on the ground. 

     Detective Pikachu is a cliché, funny, heartwarming film that proves that a good video game adaptation is possible. 


[My grade for Detective Pikachu is a B-]