Pokémon the Movie: I Choose You! review – a cute corporate rebranding exercise

The 20th feature-length promo tool for the Pokémon phenomenon is a reboot, all about the very first meeting of Ash and likable company mascot Pikachu

The – get this – 20th feature-length promotional tool for the media-spanning collectibles phenomenon turns out to be a reboot of the entire series. We are returned to the very first meeting between 10-year-old everykid Ash and totemic cat-bug-baby creature Pikachu, thereby allowing the rules of the game to be explained to a whole new generation with disposable income to squander.

As rebranding exercises cinemagoers are expected to underwrite go, I Choose You! forms a modest improvement on those headachy spinoffs that bedevilled the world around the last millennium. Though the Poké-matches rely on generic, TV-standard animation and become repetitive, occasional flourishes (some black-and-white backstory, a computer-assisted bad dream) suggest that those responsible may some day make art once they’re done bolstering a leisure conglomerate’s stock options.

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