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"POKÉMON THE FIRST MOVIE"
(1999) (voices of Veronica Taylor, Philip Bartlett) (G)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
None None Heavy *Moderate Mild
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Minor None Heavy None None
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
None None None Mild Heavy


QUICK TAKE:
Children's Animated: A team of human Pokémon trainers battle a cloned and all-powerful Pokémon who's determined to rid the world of humans and their trained Pokémon alike.
PLOT:
In a world where human beings own and train their Pokémon creatures to battle one another, the rarest such creature is Mew, a benign floating being that few have ever seen. Yet after human scientists discover a fossilized hair sample from Mew, they clone and re-engineer the creature into Mewtwo. While they were successful at creating the most powerful Pokémon ever, the sentient being, who longs to understand his place in the world, decides he must destroy all humans and their trained Pokémon.

Meanwhile Ash Ketchum and his young trainer friends, Misty and Brock, are relaxing one day when Ash is challenged by another trainer. With the aid of his first Pokémon, the electrified Pikachu, Ash easily wins and proves he's one of the best trainers around. Thus, it doesn't come as much of a surprise when he and his friends are invited to a party hosted by someone who claims to be the world's greatest Pokémon trainer.

Eager to prove their mettle, Ash and his friends set out for New Island, but are unknowingly followed by Ash's arch rivals, Jessie, James and their Pokémon mascot, Meowth who collectively make up Team Rocket. With only a few trainers making it through a storm to the island, Ash and the others discover to their surprise that the great master is none other than Mewtwo.

Learning that the megalomaniacal Pokémon plans to clone the existing Pokémon into genetically superior beings and thus rid the world of the originals and their human trainers, Ash and his friends, along with their Pokémon and an appearance by the original Mew, do what they can to stop Mewtwo and his evil plans.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're remotely involved in collecting and playing with the Pokémon trading cards, they definitely will.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: G
For not containing material to warrant a higher rating.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • Very few of the characters are human and most of the Pokémon creatures have no discernible "human" characteristics, but the following characters do have some traits.
  • ASH is the human boy who wants to be the world's best Pokémon trainer and shows some bravery in trying to stop Mewtwo.
  • MEWTWO is the cloned and megalomaniacal Pokémon who's determined to rid the world of all humans and their Pokémon.
  • PIKACHU is Ash's faithful and helpful Pokémon.
  • MEW is a rare and playful Pokémon who's normally benign and compassionate, but does battle Mewtwo to stop him.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a quick look at the content of this G-rated, animated feature aimed at kids. Many battles and/or fights occur between the Pokémon creatures, with different ones being punched, hit or blasted backwards (all in a somewhat non-graphic, very cartoon-like way).

    Some of those scenes, as well as others including ones featuring the malevolent Mewtwo creature may be a little (or somewhat or very) suspenseful or frightening to some kids, all dependent, of course, on their age, maturity level and tolerance for such material.

    Beyond that and the accompanying suspenseful music and villainous bad attitudes, however, the rest of the film's remaining categories have little or nothing in the way of major objectionable content. Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for anyone in your home, however, and especially since many young kids will probably want to see it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed content listings.

    A short animated feature, "Pikachu's Vacation" precedes the main attraction. It includes some violence (such as characters being knocked down or into the air, and another -- carrying a lit cartoon bomb -- smashed by a larger creature falling onto it -- and the bomb then going off under that other creature).


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • None.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • None.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Obviously Mewtwo has both as he wants to destroy all humans and their Pokémon and goes on a big power kick.
  • A human reneges on his promise to Mewtwo to be his partner.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed here and under "Violence" may be suspenseful to some kids, but that's dependent on their age, level of maturity and tolerance for such material (some very young kids at our screening sought the comfort/safety of their parents while watching it). In addition, Mewtwo's evil quest and stating of his wishes to destroy everyone might be upsetting to some kids.
  • Mewtwo stirs up a huge storm/hurricane that creates huge and menacing-looking waves that the human trainers must try to get through. As Ash, Misty and Brock try to head through the waves on a boat, it gets capsized and they're constantly pushed under the water by the waves in a minute or so sequence.
  • Some kids may find a scene where Mewtwo's container balls fly around and zap up the original Pokémon into them as somewhat suspenseful (that's accompanied by suspenseful music and sights of the characters, particularly Pikachu, trying to elude the balls).
  • The same holds true for a scene where the Pokémon clones are "born" as they travel down through tubes and then come out through an opening (with suspenseful music).
  • Ash gets hit in the crossfire of a battle and appears to be dead (until the tears of the other contestants magically combine together and resurrect him) in a several minute sequence.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • One Pokémon character (a turtle-like creature and later his clone) has two large cannons coming out from under its shell.
  • Mewtwo fires beams that knock characters backwards and other psychic "projectiles" that explode on impact.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrase: "Twerp trio."
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A heavy amount of ominous and suspenseful music plays throughout much of the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • None.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • None.
  • SMOKING
  • None.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • None.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The whole Pokémon phenomenon and the near cockfight type approach (the humans pit their characters against each other in nonlethal battle) that may be troubling to some viewers.
  • Why Mewtwo wants all humans and their Pokémon dead.
  • Psychic powers -- that's what Mewtwo claims to have and uses on other characters.
  • Cloning -- that's what humans have done to create Mewtwo and what he then does to the other Pokémon.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Mewtwo causes the glass container holding him to break and then destroys the lab that created him (it becomes engulfed in fire).
  • During what appears to be a training exercise, Mewtwo fires something that knocks down another Pokémon and sends others floating up into the air. Another is then blasted back against a wall.
  • Upset with a human who reneged on a partnership promise, Mewtwo destroys the facility with explosions (but we never know what happened to the human and his colleagues).
  • Some guy shows up and challenges Ash to a Pokémon battle. As such, their Pokémon creatures fight one another, knocking the others aside, some kicking others, another blowing bubbles that knock out the opponent, and Pikachu zaps several of them with his electrical discharge.
  • Mewtwo puts a human trainer under some sort of beam, causing the human to moan a bit.
  • A huge sea monster Pokémon fires a beam at Mewtwo, but he redirects it back at the sea monster, knocking it out. Another character then tries charging Mewtwo, but he sends the Pokémon creature flying backwards (using psychic forces). A dragon then tries flaming Mewtwo, but it doesn't do any good.
  • On a large playing field, Pokémon and their clones battle each other. As such, one throws another across the field, another knocks its clone back into a wall, and the two dragons fight each other shooting flames until the clone smashes the original into the ground.
  • Ash gets knocked backwards.
  • Pikachu repeatedly zaps container balls that are trying to capture him.
  • Ash runs up and tries to punch Mewtwo but gets knocked to the ground. Mewtwo then chases and fires some sort of power balls at the original Mew who evades most of them and the resulting explosions, but is hit by one that sends him hurtling up through the sky (he turns out to be okay). Eventually Mew fires some sort of power shot that smashes Mewtwo back into some seating.
  • Some explosions nearly hit some humans.
  • We see the Pokémon creatures and their clones struggling and/or punching and slapping each other (but progressively growing weary of doing so). The Pikachu clone hits the original and a clone dragon bites the other on the neck.
  • Mew and Mewtwo battle at the end while the Pikachu clone repeatedly slaps the original.
  • Ash gets hit in the crossfire of a battle and appears to be dead (until the tears of the other contestants magically combine together and resurrect him).



  • Reviewed November 6, 1999 / Posted November 10, 1999

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