‘Pokémon Detective Pikachu’: What the Critics Are Saying

Critics give their take on the live-action film based on a popular video and card game.

The reviews are in for Pokémon Detective Pikachu and critics are mixed.

The film, directed by Rob Letterman, follows voice star Ryan Reynolds in the title role, with Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom‘s Justice Smith co-starring as a young man named Tim who has given up on his dreams of becoming a Pokémon trainer. When his detective father goes missing, Tim meets Detective Pikachu and immediately has a special connection to the Pokémon, being the only person who can understand him. Together, the duo team up to solve the mystery of Tim’s missing father.

Though the Warner Bros. film opens to theaters on May 10, Legendary has already begun work on a sequel to its Pokémon-based movie, with Oren Uziel to pen the script.

For The Hollywood Reporter, Michael Rechtshaffen thinks the film “isn’t half bad” and star Reynolds brings “a generous sampling of his sardonic Deadpool sensibility to the voicing of the title role” and “imbues his world-weary Pikachu with the right balance of pith and pathos.” Further, Rechtshaffen celebrates the behind-the-camera talents for “tossing together dry humor, nostalgic sentimentality and a healthy visual effects budget to workable effect, even if those elements never actually coalesce.” Despite the film struggling to organically blend the comedy, action and emotional moments, Rechtshaffen goes on to say that “Letterman’s energetic direction manages to hold everything aloft” making the film something that can “please both Pokemaniacs and the Poke-non.”

Kate Erbland of Indiewire writes that though the film is “nothing short of awe-inspiring,” unfortunately “no amount of technical polish can detract from a thin narrative that confuses far more than it amuses.”

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