Pokemon: The First Movie

Director:Kunihiko Yuyama
Writer:Takeshi Shudo
Warner Bros.; G; 90 minutes
Voices of:Veronica Taylor, Philip Bartlett

As Pokemon achieves cultlike status in the hearts and minds of countless grade-schoolers worldwide, adults are left to puzzle over the Japanese pocket-monsters cryptic attraction for kids.

“Am I a copy?” muses super-Pokemon clone Mewtwo, “nothing but Mew's shadow?” Like a networked media mogul, Mewtwo abandons the existential crisis and decides to take over the world with mind control and an army of clones. Grappling with Mewtwo is a 12-year-old human named Ash and his trusty Pokemon Pikachu. Soft, bright battle scenes fill the G-rated animation. For adults, it's all as alienating, loveable, and psychedelic as the Teletubbies. For children, it is a movie, a way of life, a marketing tool, a video game, collectible cards, a clothing line, a book series, pure myth, 151 little monsters, and the cartoon that triggered seizures among young Japanese viewers several years ago.

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