Detective Pikachu is… surprisingly good. It’s far better than it should be for what it is. Seriously. Catch it in theatres. Via the Verge:
As a piece of storytelling, the live-action Pokémon movie Detective Pikachu fails spectacularly. Warner Bros. has the impossible task of trying to make the film appealing and likable for a movie-going audience that extends beyond nostalgic adults reminiscing over their trading cards, and kids caught up in their current Pokémon obsession.
Detective Pikachu can’t ever hope to achieve what The Pokémon Movie, a 1999 animated classic that saw children drag their less-than-enthused parents into theaters around the country, did for fans of the game. The Pokémon Movie was a rare jewel that found emotional depth in a superficial topic. Detective Pikachu, on the other hand, is an attempt to be more than a video game adaptation that pays homage to Pokémon — the creators clearly want to turn its Pokémon into actual characters, in a world that doesn’t find them exceptional at all.
But in the effort to define Pokémon by something other than their ability to be cute, weird game devices, director Rob Letterman and the film’s five-man story and writing team pull off an undeniably magical feat. Detective Pikachu is the first post-Pokémon movie. It recognizes that people know who Pikachu is, what a Pokémon battle consists of, and how humans interact with their pocket-monster pals. That lets Pokémon exist in the movie’s background, making that existence unremarkable in the process.