Pokémon: The First Movie
Directed by Kunohiko Yuyama; English translation directed by Michael Haigney.
Starring the voices of Veronica Taylor, Rachael Lillis, Eric Stuart, Addie Blaustein, and Phillip Bartlett.
I’ll confess, I’m a huge fan of the Pokémon cartoon. So, I said to myself, “When Pokémon: The Fist Movie hits the cheap theaters, I’ll go see it!” Well, it’s in the cheap theaters now. And besides, since I missed Princess Mononoke, this is my only chance to see anything remotely anime in a theater.
Actually, Pokémon: The First Movie is a bit of a double feature. First, we are presented with the short film Pikachu’s Vactaion, in which we follow the adventures of Pikachu, Togepi, and all our other favorites at their day of fun in a Pokemon-only park. Then, we get into the good stuff: Pokémon The First Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back. We are presented with Mewtwo. He is a genetically enhanced clone of Mew, the strongest Pokemon ever known. Mewtwo is confused about his creation. Why was he created? What is his purpose? Not wanting to be a slave to humans, Mewtwo destroys his captors and comes up with a plan: he will wipe out all humans and pokémon on Earth, leaving behind only him and his superior Pokemon clones. He invites the best trainers in the world, including our trio of Ash, Brock and Misty, to his island so he can clone their pokémon. Of course, it is then up to our heroes to save the day. Oh, and Team Rocket comes along for the ride.
Watching this, I couldn’t help but draw parallels to that classic movie-based-on-a-fad, Transformers: The Movie. Since they were animated by the same Japanese studio, even certain shots look the same! And I am starting to truly love seeing anime on a big screen. However, unlike Transformers, the end gets awful, awful preachy. Put on your helmets, because you’ll be beaten with 3 messages! All in all, entertaining for Pokémon fans, all others beware.