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Pokémon Detective Pikachu (2019) - Blu-ray Review

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Pokemon Detective Pikachu

Pokémon Detective Pikachu is a cute movie.  I will give this family friendly flick, directed by Rob Letterman, that, but none of its cute and cuddly chumminess makes up for the fact that this movie doesn’t really know what or where it is.  The buddy picture borrows from all sorts of genres but is supremely rudderless, being convoluted, slow, and without a driving narrative. 

"It’s certainly not for everyone, but Pokémon Detective Pikachu will certainly please the little ones . . . for about 20-minutes"


But it looks pretty damn snappy thanks to some seriously engaged CGI world-building.  So, yeah, this is all flash and bang with little emotional resonance thanks to a workshopped script that would rather spend time explaining the rules of the game than actually have us digging in the dirt of raw emotions.

Warner Bros, offering the movie a shiny and super snappy release courtesy of a somewhat standard (but slipcovered!!!) blu-ray/DVD/Digital Code Home Video release.  It doesn’t take much from the audience to appreciate the CGI beauty of Ryme City, a massive city where all the Pokémon and the humans live in harmony.

I will say this, Ryan Reynolds (as the voice of the adorable Pikachu) sells this movie.  Very few of the main actors – including Justice Smith and Kathryn Newton as a love interest who feels shoehorned in more than anything else – do much to bring us into a story surrounding the mysterious fate of ace detective Harry Goodman. 

It’s up to Tim (Smith), his 21-year-old son, and Harry’s former partner, Detective Pikachu (Reynolds) to find out what happened.  As the mystery unravels, we discover that there’s a mysterious gas involved, a hyper-realized Mew, and a massive corporation (led by Bill Nighy in yet another forgettable role) involved.  But what does it all mean for Ryme City, the only place where all the Pokémon feel safe? Pokemon Detective Pikachu

Co-starring Ken Watanabe and Chris Geere, the whole Pokémon universe is threatened thanks to the events in this flick.  Creative yet challenged at holding our interest for longer than 5-minutes at a time, this film rolls out through a series of stage-centered hiccups.  The fits and bouts that kick this movie off start with a poorly executed attempt to catch a Pokémon and then we move to a wild car crash, a zippy stroll through a backstory, and a crazy (borderline horror-infused) vision of Mew.

And then we settle into the narrative.

It’s certainly not for everyone, but Pokémon Detective Pikachu will certainly please the little ones . . . for about 20-minutes.  It is now on blu-ray thanks to Warner Bros.

2/5 stars

Pokemon Detective Pikachu

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Arrow
Available on Blu-ray
- Own POKÉMON Detective Pikachu on 4K UHD Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD Special Edition on August 6, or Own It Early on Digital on July 23.
Screen Formats: 2.39:1
Subtitles
: English SDH, French, Portuguese, Spanish
Audio:
English: English: Dolby Atmos; English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; Two-disc set; Digital copy; Movies Anywhere; DVD copy
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

This might be a kid’s movie through and through, but Warner Bros isn’t messing around when it comes to its spectacular handling of this blu-ray + DVD + Digital edition that, once again, shows they don't mess around.  With eye-popping 1080p, 2.39:1 video, room-shaking Dolby Atmos sound, and a handful of interesting bonus features, this release – as far as around and vision goes – doesn’t disappoint.  The CGI scenery and lighting flick from brightly-lit scenes to dark interior shots without losing even a single bit a visual clarity and definition. Even in the most frantic action sequences, edges remain crisp and clear.  The Dolby Atmos soundtrack is a rambunctious little bugger with a lot of audio energy coming from everywhere. I'm pretty sure my sub never rested while ambient sound also had equal share of the room from left, right, up, and rear. Also on the disc are English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1; Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1; and French: Dolby Digital 5.1 options.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • None

Special Features:

The two-disc release isn’t very deep, but that’s by design. This is a lighthearted affair. We do get a feature-length pop up tour through the movie. It’s full of fun Easter eggs and trivia. Smith guides us through a brief segment about his love for the world of Pokemon and, for about 20-min, we get to tour Ryme City (in 5 sections). There’s an alternate opening, a mini-commentary, a fun riff with Reynolds, and a music video.

  • Detective Mode
  • My Pokémon Adventure (2:13)
  • Creating the World of Detective Pikachu (5 parts, 21:22 total)
  • Alternate Opening (1:41)
  • Mr. Mime's Audio Commentary (3:00)
  • Ryan Reynolds: Outside the Actor's Studio (1:32)
  • Music Video: "Carry On" by Rita Ora and Kygo (3:51)

Blu-ray Rating:

  Movie 2/5 stars
  Video  4/5 stars
  Audio 4/5 stars
  Extras 4/5 stars

Overall Blu-ray Experience

3/5 stars

Pokemon Detective Pikachu

MPAA Rating: PG for action/peril, some rude and suggestive humor, and thematic elements..
Runtime:
104 mins
Director
: Rob Letterman
Writer:
Dan Hernandez, Benji Samit
Cast:
Ryan Reynolds, Justice Smith, Kathryn Newton
Genre
: Fantasy | Adventure | Mystery
Tagline:

Memorable Movie Quote: "Down by the docks. Rough part of town, not the sorta place you wanna visit alone at night."
Theatrical Distributor:
Warner Bros.
Official Site: https://www.detectivepikachumovie.com/
Release Date:
May 10, 2019
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
Own POKÉMON Detective Pikachu on 4K UHD Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD Special Edition on August 6, or Own It Early on Digital on July 23.
Synopsis: The story begins when ace detective Harry Goodman goes mysteriously missing, prompting his 21-year-old son Tim (Justice Smith) to find out what happened.

Aiding in the investigation is Harry's former Pokemon partner, Detective Pikachu (Ryan Reynolds): a hilariously wise-cracking, adorable super-sleuth who is a puzzlement even to himself. Finding that they are uniquely equipped to work together, as Tim is the only human who can talk with Pikachu, they join forces on a thrilling adventure to unravel the tangled mystery. Chasing clues together through the neon-lit streets of Ryme City-a sprawling, modern metropolis where humans and Pokemon live side by side in a hyper-realistic live-action world-they encounter a diverse cast of Pokemon characters and uncover a shocking plot that could destroy this peaceful co-existence and threaten the whole Pokemon universe.

Pokemon Detective Pikachu

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