I figured that it's about time I let this one out. Pokémon fans are suffering in America these days. Why? Because we rely on Kids WB and 4Kids Entertainment to provide us with our beloved series and movies. As far as the series goes, they do a pretty good job in bringing the fun and magic of the Japanese versions to television. So what is their problem when it comes to the movies? Honestly now, I have seen all three Pokémon movies in Japanese and I will definitely be seeing the fourth one. They are excellent movies. They are all enjoyable and fun to watch. And, after seeing Pokémon 2000 in theaters, I can't help but wonder how these American producers read the Japanese scripts. The way it appears, it seems that they read and see something that says `Insert empty moral here' in big bold faced letters. It definitely appears that way as they used the same wonderful dubbing methods they used on MSB (extreme sarcasm there) and created this crap.
*possible spoilers from here on*
Well, I guess I should first talk about Pikachu's Rescue Adventure. My first gripe with this came with no narration. I guess they got enough bad comments on the Pokédex narration that plagued Pikachu's Vacation, and, instead of going with a caring, gentle woman's voice as appeared in Pikachu no Natsu Yasumi and Pikachu Tankentai, they just cut the narration all together. This wouldn't have been a problem, except for one thing. Did anyone really understand why the Exeggcute didn't let Togepi go until the end? Possibly the fans, but I'm sure not the parents. Then, there's the theme song. I couldn't help but roll my eyes at this one. The Japanese theme song was `Tankentai wo Tsukurou' and was sung by Japanese children. It was fun and enjoyable. This one: nauseating. Now, one of my favorite parts of the short was the dancing Kireihana. Nice music, fun to watch. That's changed with the Bellossom. The music sucked for one, but on top of that, they had all the Pokémon talk during the music, which turned out to be jumpy, annoying, and just unnecessary. Oh, and then there's the Poliwhirl who thinks he's a Poliwrath. You'd think that guys that work with these characters constantly would at least learn what they are. Basically, not much could save this little ill fated dub, which is very unfortunate considering its potential. But, I haven't touched on the worst of it yet.
You'd think that the warning signs would've been apparent to me when I received my issue of Nintendo Power. For some unfathomable reason, I had been placing some faith in 4Kids and the WB. My thoughts were `well, they screwed up on the first movie, but the second is different as far as the theme goes, so they should do well.' That in mind, I just didn't pay attention to the warning signs I encountered in the theaters when the trailers said, `You will believe that one person can make all the difference.' With the way they said that at every turn, I was hoping that this would not turn into a moral fest like MSB did at the end of the English version. Then comes Nintendo Power, in which I see all my fears realized in the words `the main feature 'The Power of One.' At that point, I became a bit more uneasy. `The Power of One?!' Not a good sign. However, I still kept some of my false faith. Big mistake.
Sitting in the theater, I was literally getting stomach cramps watching another movie which I loved in Japanese being turned into complete and utter junk. I hear comments that say it was better because the moral was more subtle. I can see a point in that since they didn't pander this thing, repeating it over and over like in MSB. However, it did more damage than anything else in this movie. First of all, the legend that was read throughout was changed a bit to read `the world turns to Ash.' Ah hah. So, Ash is the chosen one? Whatever. In the Japanese version, the inhabitants of Arshia needed a Pokémon trainer to carry out their traditional ceremony. This time, he's the chosen one. A greater way that this did damage was to Lugia. Lugia was one of the coolest characters in a Pokémon movie.... when the movie was ABOUT Lugia. In this one, Lugia is forced to take a back seat to Ash. In the scene where they're flying back to the main island, Lugia and Ash are discussing the conditions of Lugia's existence, not that Ash is going to make all the difference. Overall in this category, Ash wasn't really the `one person' that would make the difference, since he was helped by many along the way.
A lot of the other stuff is kind of nit picking. Furura's flute song wasn't nearly as sweet and enjoyable as the Japanese one. Jirarudan's speech to them saying his collection `started with a Mew card?' Ugh. Even worse, Misty's outrage originally concerned the way Moltres and Zapdos were being held. `Why didn't you put them in Pokéballs when you caught them? This is like caging them to be displayed.' Much different from whining about him thinking Pokémon are things to be collected like stamps. If there were any real redeeming values in this, they came from Team Rocket. Some pretty funny lines. Not really to make me laugh out loud, but more to make me giggle and slightly ease the pains in my stomach. Well, that was officially the last American Pokémon movie I'm going to see. I've imported the third one and find it very enjoyable. I would rather not see another Japanese movie be ruined in the same fashion as the first two. I'll be importing the fourth one as well. Forget you, Kids WB and 4Kids. You have forsaken me for the last time.
4 out of 7 found this helpful.
Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.