Pokémon was the cunning Japanese/American ploy to part parents with their cash as their kids demanded Pokémon trading cards, computer games, toys and books. While the Pokémon characters were first seen in a Nintendo computer game, it was the 1998 TV series (cunningly shown at teatime) that got kids hooked, and was followed quickly by this short (75 mins) movie.
For the uninitiated, Pokémon are pocket monsters, and young Ash (Taylor) wants to be the greatest master of these creatures in the world, which he will achieve by catching all of the little darlings (and there are hundreds of them). In this film, a new Pokémon has been created by scientists, called Mewtwo, who wants to rule the world, so it is up to Ash and his pals to save the day. Unfortunately, the film-makers assume anyone watching is already a Pokémon fan, so don’t expect much explanation as to what on earth is going on (and there’s not much dialogue either). It looks nice (lots of bright colours and Pikachu the Pokémon is a cutie) but might as well be in Aramaic if you’ve never seen any Pokémon before. One for fans of the series/game only, this was followed by Pokémon: The Movie 2000, Pokémon 3: The Movie and Pokémon 4Ever.
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(photo credit: Warner Brothers)