User ReviewsReview this title
However, I cannot say the same for this amazing movie. I loved almost EVERYTHING about it.
Characters: My favorite characters have to be Lisa, Torren, and Margo. I don't want to describe every character cause it'll be too difficult for me to. But all I can really say, I think Margo was definitely the most interesting character imo. And every character in this movie had a fair share of screen time and got a fair amount of time to develop. The only complaint I had with this movie was that Lugia didn't get enough screen time and he (spoiler alert) showed up at the end of the movie. But I let that slide cause at least the main focus of the movie was actually shown on screen unlike (cough) Movie 20 I Choose You!
Animation: OLM, you guys are smart for hiring Wit Studio to animate this movie. This movie easily IMO has better animation than last years movie, and better animation than Sun & Moon and even XYZ and that's saying something. The way Pikachu was moving on screen while they were trying to rescue Tyranitar and that battle with Zeroara. Everything just looked awesome! The colors... all of it was just awesome. Wit Studio, you guys are geniuses. What more could we want from the Attack on Titan animators?
Dubbing and Music: Okay, let me just say this. I am SO glad the English dub did NOT do another dub soundtrack for this movie. I was a bit disappointed with the dub music in Movie 17, 18, and 20. All the music was amazing and I didn't hear any boring and goofy sounding music during any of the scenes and all the scenes that were silent didn't even have dub music in them either. Zeroara's Theme has to be my favorite from this movie. I hope they do this for Movie 22 Mewtwo Strikes Back Evolution. I don't have an opinion on "The Power of Us" ending theme yet cause this review is based off me seeing it on Disney XD as they played the credits for 30 seconds over a black screen. Makes me regret not seeing this movie in the theaters even more. And I liked everyone's voices too. I liked Lisa, Torren, Callahan, Margo, etc. dub voices. All of theirs did a great job voicing their respective characters in the film. Also, if you guys see any 4Kids fanboys or sub etilists hating on the dub of this movie. Just IGNORE them! Okay? They're not worth your time. There are these trolls named Dwatch Says (aka dwatchren on this site) and The Common Sense Man on youtube who will complain about the dub and bash it no matter how much effort and love they put into it. This movie was the best English dubbed Pokémon movie in my opinion and nothing can change that. Heck, even the Japanese Director of this movie,Tetsuo Yajima HIMSELF said the English dub of this movie was pretty good. If you see "dwatchren" on this site writing a negative 1/10 review about the dub of this movie, just pay no attention to him.
Anyway, go see this movie! It is the best! Pretty much the best Pokémon movie we've ever had in a LONG time and that's saying something. You won't be disappointed, trust me.
Yes, I actually found some of these characters to be quite engaging and the film doesn't just abandon their efforts to improve themselves in favor of eye-popping spectacle (which previous Pokémon films have sadly done), it maintains focus, and for me that earns the film big points. I found Risa to be the most endearing supporting character, being a former athlete who is afraid to run again after sustaining an injury in the past, but with the support of her new Pokémon partner Eevee, she is able to fight this fear in order to help Ash save the city. Risa's arc was an interesting departure from the Pokémon movie formula because her dilemma felt very relatable, like out of a slice-of-life that Mamoru Hosoda (Summer Wars, Wolf Children) would direct. The other character I really liked was Callahan. Some may see him as unlikable due to his insincere methods of impressing his niece, but there's one element that always debunks this perception for me: Love. He just loves his niece and wants to make her happy. Deny it all you want, we've all done petty things out of love before. This doesn't automatically make Callahan a bad guy. It was sweet to see this insecure man realize his faults and become a hero, all for his cute niece. I also really connected with Toren. I could totally sympathize with his type of awkward anxiety, it's something I've personally suffered with my entire life as an introvert and it caused me many hardships. It was revitalizing to see him gradually take his stand.
All that being said, some of the dialogue choices in this film were excessively hoaky and non-sensical. Some (said mostly by Ash) even made me cringe and sometimes face palm, as if I'm uttering "Come on, did he really just say that?". This is a recurring issue English dub of all anime suffers from and it really holds characters back from being memorable. I understand this is a kid's film first, and certainly I don't blame the voice actors whatsoever, they all did a brilliant job matching their vocals with the type of characters they're voicing and I hope their careers expand in the near future, but I do wish the English version of this film received a much stronger rewrite. Whatever's holding that type of progress back behind closed doors needs to get itself together and listen to feedback. I'm not the only one thinking this. Read forums, read YouTube comments. Clearly something needs to be improved and shouldn't require a neatly written appeal.
The visuals are breathtaking, and have been since the first Pokémon movie. I absolutely adore the designs of the forests and cities in the Pokémon world. They are so colorful and brimming with life, I just want to escape reality and reside in this universe with no worries on my back whatsoever. However, I do have one criticism of the art. There are some moments where CGI is implemented, and not only does it look awkward, but the use of it is very random and unbalanced. In a single shot, there will be some humans and Pokémon that are traditionally drawn, while some are 3D models, and it doesn't look right. It's very noticeable, redundant overall. The occasional 3D environments are understandable. They might not be rendered perfectly, but they're a lot less distracting than 3D people and Pokémon that show up out of the blue alongside flatter models. I just wanted to point out some lack of stylistic unity. If it isn't disturbing anybody else, I'll be amazed.
I think The Power of Us is one of the better Pokémon movies. The story (while not entirely original) is easy enough to follow, the characters have tons of likability and are very plucky and relatable (despite some problematic dialogue), and overall the film is just pleasing to eye (just watch out for those 3D models). A quick, colorful, and slightly endearing adventure that is sure to keep children and some of the more older fans of Pokémon entertained. If it's playing at a theater near you, I say get a ticket, but if you feel you'll be underwhelmed, I'm sure it'll play on Disney XD in a month or two. It's up to you!
Such a great movie!
Pacing issues all over the place, The Power of Us does not do well to ape a similar structure as Pokemon The First Movie, where we open with a short...except The Power of Us then follows with another short...and then inexplicably follows with a long translated interview with longtime director of the animated franchise Kunihiko Yuyama. This is, after we've had advertisements for the Pokemon Magazine, Pokemon Go, and Pokemon Let's Go Pikachu and Eevee.
It takes so long to get into the movie it's a wonder people stuck it out. Even as a longtime fan of all things Pokemon, it's a bit much for the cinema. A Blu-Ray release, sure. With all supplementary content relegated to special features. Instead you're given everything including a brief mention of the upcoming Detective Pikachu before you get to the real deal. To Pokemon the Movie: The Power of Us.
And if you've seen a Pokemon movie...then you've already seen this movie. Somehow, after twenty years of movies that accompany the anime but aren't necessarily part of the anime series, the formula stays the exact same and somehow it sticks.
An adventure parallel to the show in a location never seen or referenced before (at least to this assumption) where there's discussion on the impact of human interactions with Pokemon where it's Ash Ketchum's job to be the best (but not a Pokemon Master) and teach both Pokemon and humans that it's better to peacefully coexist and help each other rather than fight. In a franchise that's partially centred around the fighting of each other's Pokemon. It's the idea of Pokemon The First Movie, and it's the idea of this movie twenty years later.
This would be fine if it was confined to just an episode or at maximum, an hour movie, but instead we have 105 minutes that may or may not include the previously mentioned content (it was not timed, but it felt like so much more).
What Pokemon the Movie: The Power of Us nails - other than the brilliant and fun world of Pokemon and the occupants of it - is its character arcs. For the lazy copy/paste themes, there are solid journeys for all of the characters in the movie. They get teased out across the runtime, but they get satisfying conclusions complete with character change. Which is what more movies should have.
It's great to see all the various Pokemon gloriously animated and brought to life in the animation style that defined childhoods. Even if the CG enhancements still don't set the world of fire.
The Power of Us suffers many sins, and beyond it being safe and samey, a true sin is just how drawn out it is. We know exactly what's coming because it's referenced early on, and then we know what's coming because it's constantly put in our faces with each scene. It gets to a point where you are frustrated in the way that we get it, and are further frustrated because it's taking forever to get from Point A to Point B.
The characters introduced in this film and their development doesn't save this film. The pre-roll damaged the film's chances from the beginning, and then the feature did no favours beyond grasping simple effective storytelling.
Good for the Pokemon fan, bad for the impatient and young who aren't nerds for movie special features, Pokemon the Movie: The Power of Us offers content that will please some at the cinema, and some more on home video, but it doesn't quite please in general beyond a serviceable anime injection.
The 21st Pokemon movie titled "The Power of Us" is out on the web, and as excited as I was after watching the trailer almost a year ago, the excitement was still in me to check out what's new in the franchise. Now the Pokemon series hasn't done very well in the movie front. There were only a handful of decent Pokemon movies these last 20 years. The first movie "Mewtwo Strikes Back" is probably the most iconic and in my opinion, the best Pokemon movie made up to date. It had everything going for it, with a powerful storyline that was being hinted at and built in the anime series itself. Other notable movies were "Pokemon Heroes", "Lucario and the Mystery of Mew" and "Arceus and the Jewell of life". So that's just 4 out of 20.
Although Pokemon kinda made a smart move when they made the 20th movie, revisiting the origin of the protagonist, it didn't quite feel like the way it should have. The replacement of Brock and Misty with new characters, and the mother-of-all-cringe Pikachu talking scene, kinda held the movie back. But ever since the release of the teaser for the 21st movie, it was obvious that something was very different. It seemed more nuanced and this got me quite intrigued. So just as the movie was out on web platforms, I watched it.
I was genuinely surprised at how much I enjoyed a Pokemon movie; something that I haven't done in a long time. The movie's success as a stand-alone movie, in my opinion, comes from intelligent decisions and good character development. The decision to change the drawing style was a good one. It was more striking that something looks different, and different might be good. This is also the only movie where Ash doesn't have his usual travel companions with him, which once again, I think is a good decision. The movie has 5 other supporting characters, all strangers, and all likeable. The lack of likeable characters has always plagued the Pokemon movies. But the way all of these characters were developed, each unique, each with their own goal, each with an obstacle they have to get over, and each with a realistic motivation. This sort of character development was a surprise, and the fact that the team behind the movie pulled this off should be commended. No character seemed forced or out of place, and each character had a purpose to be fulfilled in the plot (even Team Rocket).
Unlike previous movies, The Power of Us doesn't focus more on the Pokemon. Although the plot is centred around Zeraora and Lugia, the movie cuts back on the over the top action, while taking time to develop the characters and advance the story. This is quite a risky gamble, since the only reason we watch Pokemon is for the Pokemon, but this was a risk worth taking, because in my opinion, it paid off well. The awesome Pokemon action wasn't in any way compromised as the movie had its share of epic moments.
The movie did have a few flaws with the pacing and the dialogue (which I understand because the movie is aimed at kids). But the animation was smooth and beautifully done, and it makes the movie feel alive. The Power of Us is a very colourful movie, and I'll even recommend it to Pokemon fans who are sick of the series. Maybe this'll help heal the wounds left by hearing Mewtwo voiced by a girl :p.
This was not at all a perfect movie in any sense, but it manages to do a decent job to keep the audience engaged and actually take the plot seriously for once. In general, it might be a mediocre movie, but in Pokemon standards, it's quite good. This is a good direction in which the Pokemon company is heading. Let's see if the 22nd movie, "Mewtwo Strikes Back - Evolution" holds up the standard.
PS - This movie is only for Pokemon fans.