Site created 12/15/97.
review added: 11/16/00
The Movie 2000
2000 (2000) - Warner Bros.
review by Brad Pilcher of
The Digital Bits
Disc Ratings (Video/Audio/Extras):
Specs and Features
102 mins, G, full frame (1.33:1), single-sided, single-layered,
Snapper case packaging, short film Pikachu's
Rescue Adventure, music video gallery (includes Dream
Street's They Don't Understand,
Alysha Antonio's Story Of and
Youngstown's Pokémon World),
theatrical trailers (for Pokémon:
The Movie 2000 and Pokémon
3), film-themed menu screens, scene access (Pikachu's
Rescue Adventure has 8 chapters, Pokémon
The Movie 2000 has 20 chapters), languages: English and
French (DD 5.1), subtitles: English and French, Closed Captioned
"One person can
make all the difference."
Yes, Father... I have sinned. How do I know this? Well... I know
this because, as punishment, I have been required (forced by Todd
and Bill, actually) to review all things Pokémon. I did the
first movie, and now I've been handed Pokémon:
The Movie 2000. Ugh!
And this time, the "Ugh" is actually justified. I'll
grant you Pokémaniacs this - the first film was mildly
satisfying and was something I think I'd even had to recommend to
parents. The story was inane, but it's the sort of inanity that goes
over well with kiddies. Don't get me wrong - it was Pokémon
and deserved every "WHADAFRIK!" I gave it. But I still
couldn't unilaterally pan it. Hey - the actual DVD presentation was
even good. But this sequel! Don't get me started on it. Oh wait, I
have to get started on it. Well, this isn't going to be pretty.
Consider yourself warned.
I popped in the disc ever so reluctantly, like I was handling
nuclear waste, and I told my machine to play the movie. The first
thing it sent to my TV screen was the short film
Pikachu's Rescue Adventure. Oh
dear lord, what is this? For half an hour, I was subjected to little
cream puff Pokémon, not to mention SMILING EGGS dancing
around my screen, uttering incoherent squeaks and apparently having
conversation. I physically got a headache, and I can't imagine any
child being heavily entertained by this unless they are
four-years-old or younger - seriously.
Then we get to the actual film. The plot goes like this - some
villain, whose name I didn't get, has this really big flying ship
that he's the only occupant of. His mission in life is to capture
these three Pokémon birds from the Islands of Ice, Fire and
Lightning. By doing this, he'll somehow upset the balance of nature
and send the Earth's ecosystem crashing down. So of course, ace Pokémon
trainer Ash Ketchum and his gang of Poké-bangers get caught
up in trying to save the world. Hey - don't look at me. I didn't
make this up.
To say the film is lacking a decent story would be an
understatement. To say the dialogue is a shambles would be to insult
the intelligence of any adult. To say the characters are shallow,
with little to no development, would be akin to saying, "The
President of the United States lies." This is just horrible and
I don't know where to begin to explain it. It's just bad. Bad. Bad.
Instead of bashing the story, I'll instead rip on the animation. To
all animators: let's either learn how to integrate CGI into a
seamless and beautiful whole, or stop using it altogether. So often
in this film, the CGI elements just clashed so horribly with the
rest of the animation, or were just so plain bad themselves, that
they actually detracted from the look of the film. The reason a film
like The Prince of Egypt
looked so good, was because the computer-generated elements were as
seamless as you could get (and they looked really good to begin
This film was cropped to fit the whole screen and, for the target
audience, I can understand. However, an incredibly large amount of
framing was lost by doing so. As a result, you'll often see
characters hanging half on the screen and half off, because they've
been cropped. The original animators obviously were thinking cinema,
while the marketing team was thinking of home video. The video
presentation suffers because of it. There's some grain evident, but
color balances are on and it's not a terrible piece of video. The
audio is a bland mixture of effects and cheesy dialogue. Spatial
effects are not really taken advantage of, and so this Dolby Digital
5.1 track gets no more than an average rating.
The DVD extras are a mixed bag too. Warner must have been reeling
from all the reviews (and wondering why they did such a full-on
special edition for the first Poké-film), because this DVD is
much, much lighter than the first disc. This time, there are no
commentary tracks (thankfully) present here. The only extras include
a trailer for this movie and for the third installment (coming in
the spring of 2001 - gasp!). There's also a gallery of music videos
from some televised Pokémon concert/event/I don't know what.
The music pretty much sucks and the performers are all unknowns,
except for Weird Al Yankovic and Donna Summer. And even for those
two, this isn't their best work. The DVD-ROM material is basically
your usual web links and isn't even worth mentioning. Oh yeah... the
disc comes with a Pokémon collector's card and some sort of
Pokémon coin thingie that kids will probably go nuts for.
OK, I'm done. Thankfully, I have survived my Poké-punishment
until the third movie hits DVD. For parents, if your kids like Pokémon,
this is a disc you can safely buy them. For everybody else, take a
sledgehammer to your nearest store and attack the aisle with this
disc. Just kidding.