2005 was a year that would be historical for 4Kids and Pokemon. It was definitely the first sign of dark clouds on the horizon for one and rocky roads eventually leading to greener pastures for the other. On October 10, 2005, 4Kids sold their 3% stake in The Pokemon Company back to them, meaning they would not get anymore revenue from Pokemon in Asian markets. While I can’t find any information on how much they bought it for, they sold the stake for $960,000.
TPC then announced that they would not be renewing their contract with 4Kids which was set to expire on December 31, 2005. Pokemon USA was instead tasked by TPC to be their own in-house North American dubbing and distribution company. Beginning in 2006, they would be creating and launching their own dub of Pokemon. Pokemon USA was created all the way back in 2001 to handle overseas licensing in the Americas, meaning they were probably planning for this day for a while. They no longer needed 4Kids, stripping them of one of their biggest titles and being one of the biggest hits 4Kids would ever take. (Some sources say 4Kids just dropped Pokemon, but I can’t fathom why they would. It was still one of their absolute top earners, and would continue being so for years even simply through residuals after they lost the license. Dropping the license would cause nothing but problems for them, so I don’t see what the logic is in the assumption that they dropped it.) 4Kids would be allowed to dub season eight, Advanced Battle, as well as the eighth Pokemon movie, Lucario and the Mystery of Mew, but that would be it.
While Al Kahn publicly wished PUSA all the best and celebrated eight years with the show, the company losing its main tentpole was far from good news. In addition, the voice actors were not at all pleased at being spontaneously fired from a series that they had put eight years of work into and had become beloved to many of them. Keep in mind, Pokemon was not just 4Kids’ big break – it was also the doorway to relative stardom for many of the voice actors. And throughout the years both the company and the voice actors (but mostly the voice actors) had been endeared to the fans and vice versa. To quote my recently edited-in entry on the ninth Pokemon movie review;
“None of the original voice actors were happy about being dumped by the new company, even though Maddie Blaustein took it in stride. Eric Stuart said they were driven by greed and even implied that this would be the death of the show, even though we now know that was an incorrect prediction, Veronica Taylor stated PUSA cares nothing about quality and that it’s ridiculous for them to claim it will be identical when they’re gutting everything 4Kids and the original VAs did to the show, and Rachel Lillis was pissed, she straight out said so, especially towards someone I’ll address in a second. In fact, they were all blindsided by both the fact that they were all being ‘fired’ AND the fact that 4Kids lost the rights in the first place. No one told them anything, there was no warning, they just told them they were being replaced and moved on.
So why were the original cast members shafted anyway? According to Eric Stuart, Veronica Taylor and Rachel Lillis – it was all just to save money. It was cheaper to hire a cast of “sound-alikes” than it was to keep the new cast on board, and they thought the fans would be too stupid to notice or wouldn’t care because, again, voice actors are treated like shit. But, of course, the fans DID notice and DID care, but by that point it was too late.
None of them asked for more money. They all would have worked for the same amount 4Kids was already paying them, which, by implications, was already not that great, but PUSA never negotiated for their contracts or invited them back. They just showed them the door.
To make matters worse, one of the PUSA voice actors, Bill Rogers, the new voice of Brock, made a post on Serebii.net that Rachel Lillis did not take kindly to at all because he made off like the original voice actors’ old contracts had a clause that made it so they couldn’t come over to the new company and could never be involved in future Pokemon projects. According to Rachel Lillis, no such clause existed whatsoever and he had “no idea what (he) was talking about.” and said all of this was incredibly shady.
And she was right to think that way because some of the original cast were eventually invited back to play bit parts and reprise some of their roles (none of the main cast) briefly, barring, oddly enough, Veronica Taylor of all people, and Eric Stuart. TAJ Productions, which was originally 4Kids’ dubbing partner and was PUSA’s dubbing partner for a bit, went out of business in early 2008 and was replaced by DuArt Film and Video. They made the decision to bring in some of the old voice actors, although to what end I really don’t know. None of them reprised big parts, except Dan Green who got to reprise Mewtwo, and Ted Lewis, who got to reprise Giovanni, and the parts they got that weren’t reprisals were kinda insulting (the last two roles they gave to Rachel Lillis before she left were voices of Pokemon….) The biggest roles the old cast seemed to land were Erica Schroeder, who originally voiced Nurse Joy, voicing Bianca in Black and White, and Jason Griffith, who really only had CotD/CotM parts in the original series, eventually voicing Cilan in Black and White.”
However, due to the way 4Kids’ contract was structured, they would reap some benefits from Pokemon.An article from Business Wire stated “4Kids will continue to receive commissions for the next several years on payments made under existing Pokemon license agreements whose term expires after December 31, 2005. It is expected that commissions earned by 4Kids from the Pokemon property will decline over the course of the next several years.”
As I stated, this money flow from old licensed work would continue to be substantial enough to be one of 4Kids’ bigger sources of income throughout a good chunk of the rest of their existence….However, that was a bit of a double-edged sword. It would be revealed in 2011, when they were filing for their first round of bankruptcy, that 4Kids still owed TPC quite a lot of money, $4.7mil in fact. According to an audit that TPC did in 2010 for the years between mid-2001 and 2008, 4Kids didn’t account for nearly $4,700,000 in “deficiencies” from undisclosed sources. The only specific thing brought up in the document is Pokemon Movie 04. 4Kids surrendered its right to receive any profits from the movie as a result of the dispute, so I assume it had something to do with that, at least (Although the movie didn’t make nearly enough to be worth all of that), but there are likely other areas that contributed to those deficiencies.
In 2012, they completed a settlement agreement in which TPC would receive $1,000,000 plus interest.
As this storm started, 4Kids would be in the middle of releasing Pokemon season seven, Advanced Challenge, and Pokemon Movie 07, Pocket Monsters Advanced Generation the Movie: Deoxys the Sky-Splitting Visitor, which would be retitled, Pokemon: Destiny Deoxys.
Ironically, things would actually start looking a tiny bit brighter for 4Kids on the Pokemon front.
Despite Destiny Deoxys still not seeing a theatrical release, 4Kids had a better idea on how to give the movie more attention. They struck a deal with Warner Bros. to have the movie air on Kids WB on January 20, 2005 – three weeks before it would be released on DVD. This would turn out to be an incredibly smart move, giving Kids WB the best ratings they’ve had in their target demographic since 2003. The movie did need to be edited for TV – particularly 15 minutes of footage needed to be removed and some footage was sped up for it to properly fit the broadcast slot. However, the DVD version was left intact. You can find all of the cuts required for broadcast length on Bulbapedia.
On February 15, 2005, Destiny Deoxys would be released on VHS and DVD. For the final time, the movies would be released by Miramax, and for the first time, the movie would not be accompanied by a short – allowing the movie to be extra long.
To their credit, Miramax would actually do better with their cropping issues on this movie. Despite still being released in 4:3 as opposed to 16:9, they edited the cropped footage better and panned the shots instead of jutting the footage when characters needed to be in frame. In re-releases, the movie would be in 16:9.
The initial DVD release would include a promotional Deoxys card. However, unlike the other promotional cards, this one would be given out at various other events, making it not quite as exclusive as the others.
The DVD also came with special features such as a ‘Who’s That Pokemon?’ game, a behind-the-scenes featurette with the director, a Pokemon quiz game and gallery art for the posters. However, as has been the norm with Miramax, their subsequent re-releases of the movie would not include these features despite recycling the box art that claims they’re on the disc. However, again, this issue would be fixed in the 2020 re-release.
For the edits that were attributed to 4Kids alone, the movie actually didn’t fare too badly. It’s noted as being one of their better dubs.
Critically, the movie earned a resounding ‘Meh’ from non-fan audiences – claiming it was decent, but not much better than the average Pokemon episode. Fans responded positively to the movie, praising its intense action, more mature feeling and fun characters – particularly Munchlax and Deoxys. It’s still not considered one of best Pokemon movies, but it is fondly remembered by many.
Overall, 2005 was a lower year for 4Kids, which isn’t really a surprise. They had net revenues of $86,662,000, down from $103,306,000 in 2004. Their net income was basically halved with $5,069,000 compared with $12,730,000 in 2004. Declines in returns from Yu-Gi-Oh!, Kirby, Pokemon and TMNT as well as One Piece and Mew Mew Power were blamed for some of the loss while Cabbage Patch Kids and Winx Club were credited as helping offset it.
Plot: A mysterious meteor lands on earth near the North Pole containing the alien Pokemon, Deoxys. It tries to take a strange stone from deep within the snow, but Rayquaza, angry at the intrusion on its territory, violently attacks Deoxys. Rayquaza seemingly kills Deoxys before returning to the sky.
Four years later, Deoxys regenerates its body and continues its search for the stone, and Rayquaza wants to take it down once more.
Meanwhile, Satoshi/Ash and the others meet a boy named Toi/Tori who suffers from a paralyzing fear of Pokemon after a traumatic experience with them as a small child. They try to help him get over this fear by getting him accustomed to Pokemon, but they find that helping Toi is a lot more difficult than they first thought.
Breakdown: This poster is definitely more dynamic than the American poster, but, being fair, the American poster is just an Englished-up version of an alternate Japanese poster, so I can’t really complain too much.
From all I can find, this movie is a very loyal translation, if not the most loyal adaptation we’ve seen so far, so I don’t believe this requires a step-by-step analysis.
Instead, let’s review this in a chunklet format – by 20 minute chunks.
20 Minute Mark
The ‘World of Pokemon’ opener is actually the same dialogue we’ve come to know instead of trying to shoehorn in stuff about the Pokeball itself.
Just now noticing that the animation on the Jolteon in the opener with the herd of Pokemon running is so jarring I’d even say it’s incomplete.
Now I know what this opener with the awful CGI reminds me of. Pokemon Snap. Mm, I miss Pokemon Snap.
I don’t have the Japanese video track so, sadly, I can’t compare the title screens.
Tory’s Japanese name is Toi. Also, his last named is Rondo, which may be accurately-ish turned into Lund.
Status update: Munchlax/Gonbe is still adorable and hilarious.
Oh god, the little cube robots are just as annoying here as they were in the dub….
40 Minute Mark
Satoshi tells Toi he only wants to battle as they exit the elevator whereas Ash just said ‘Wait, we just wanna…’ which makes it a little more understanding in the original as to why this guy just shoved these kids into the Battle Tower system….the system still should have recognized that Toi’s not a Trainer, though.
Likewise, Hitomi/Rebecca says Satoshi beat her to the arena, not that he cut in front of her. Wording is everything, 4Kids.
I have no idea how I got through Movie 06 without noticing this, but Masato’s/Max’s Japanese voice is terrible.
Ryu was changed to Rafe, and Shota was changed to Sid.
Satoshi actually acts like kind of a jerk when he takes the reigns in the match. Whereas Ash tells Tori not to worry about battling, Satoshi says, in a pretty rough tone, ‘I’ve had enough of this! I’ll do this alone!’ Dude, chill out. He said he’s not a Trainer and yet you pestered him to battle all because you were way too hyped to battle someone you met ten minutes ago. Is it really a surprise he has no idea what to do?
Status Update: Yup, still adorable.
Later Status Update: Still hilarious.
Okay, so we get a bit of a trade off here. Haruka is a little more rude to Shota than May is to Sid, and Takeshi is much less of a pushy controlling asshat in that one scene with Hitomi than Brock was with Rebecca.
Obviously, the insert song during the little Pokemon party is completely different from the dub’s. And….this song really is just bad. I feel like this song should be in some moe shoujo anime, not Pokemon. The melody is okay, a little toe-tapping, but the lyrics and vocals are just….gah. Not to mention, with all the talk of stars, this song seems more suited for Movie 06….
Also, the song just suddenly ends after the second chorus. *shrug*
One Hour Mark
Nothing of note, really.
One Hour 20 minute Mark
Haruka: “Motionless escalators feel kinda weird.”
……Excuse me, Mitch, gonna borrow a joke for a second.
Mitch Hedberg: “I like escalators because escalators can never break. They can only become stairs. There would never be an ‘Escalator temporarily out of order’ sign, only an ‘Escalator temporarily stairs. Sorry for the convenience.’”
For the record, May merely said that she’d never take escalators for granted again.
Audrey and Catherine, Rafe’s sisters, keep their original names. Though I have to wonder why they have English names and Ryu’s is very obviously Japanese.
Satoshi: “Professor Rondo, Toi’s not the only one who can save the city. I’m here too!” You really can’t let anyone else have the spotlight for five minutes, can you? This is Movie 04 all over again.
Wow, Kabigon/Snorlax’s Japanese voice is…..just awful. Just….terrible.
As expected, the end credits song is just the insert song only longer, and somehow it’s even worse in the extended version. The added lyrics are even more cutesy and lame and, while it’s not horribly repetitive, it still is as such.
This movie is damn near identical to the 4Kids version barring some minor dialogue changes that both make the script better and worse, so it evens out. The music is worse thanks to the lone vocal song, but then again the video isn’t cropped so that also evens out.
All in all, I have the same problems with the original as I do the dub. Some problems differ due to slight script changes, but I’m ultimately just as ‘satisfied’ with the original as I was with the dub.
Recommended Audience: Same as the dub, 6+
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Plot: A mysterious meteor lands on earth near the north pole containing the alien Pokemon, Deoxys. It tries to take a strange stone from deep within the snow, but Rayquaza, angry at the intrusion on its territory, violently attacks Deoxys. The legendary dragon seemingly kills Deoxys before returning to the skies.
Four years later, Deoxys regenerates its body and continues to search for the stone, but Rayquaza wants to take him down once more.
Meanwhile, Ash and the others meet a boy named Tory who suffers from a paralyzing fear of Pokemon after a traumatic experience with them as a small child. They try to help him get over this fear by getting him accustomed to Pokemon, but they find that helping Tory is a lot more difficult than they first thought.
Breakdown: Ladies and gentlemen, the last Pokemon movie I watched full out in the past before doing these reviews.
I caught Destiny Deoxys on Kids WB around the time of its release in the US, and I remember being completely unimpressed by it. I don’t like Deoxys at all. It has a weird design, especially in defense form, I don’t care for its color scheme and I find its backstory to be rather silly, even if this is the first time in a long time where we’ve revisited the concept of Pokemon aliens.
There is one aspect of this movie that I watched all the time and that was really for the song, which I’ll address later.
Before I go onto the review, that movie poster has two different versions. The one you see above which is basically a mirror image of the Japanese poster barring the text (I think that’s the first time that’s ever happened) and this version.
I honestly don’t know why this was altered like this. It’s still the same poster but the alternate forms have been removed, Rayquaza has been moved up, Max, May and Brock have all been removed, Plusle and Minun have been moved and Munchlax was added. I much prefer the original version, and I honestly don’t understand the changes to the second.
I can, however, excuse it a bit because the speed form never appears in this movie – only the normal and defense forms do.
With that out of the way, let’s start the show!
Be warned, this movie is quite a bit longer than the other Pokemon movies because it didn’t need to take 20-30 minutes off to include the short, meaning the review will also be a little lengthier.
We start with not-the-World-of-Pokemon opener. This time, we’re exploring the World of Pokeball. We as an audience even get sucked up into a Pokeball to finally see what it’s truly like in there. Apparently it’s a green world filled with green blocks of jello and hallucinations of various Pokemon. Hah, take that countless Pokemon message board posts!
We segue into the ‘World of Pokemon’ as we cut to tons of Pokemon running across the screen. The last time I saw so many Pokemon running in one direction, the world was ending, so, uh, you’re making me kinda nervous already, movie.
What’s up with the weird CGI Rhyhorn during this sequence? So awkward.
After that we keep going back and forth between CGI and traditionally animated Pokemon. At least most of the CGI ones go by so quickly that I can’t tell how bad they likely are, but the Arbok at the end is a little off-putting.
As the opener continues with explaining the dynamic between humans and Pokemon, we cut to Ash and the others. Then they straight up steal the shot of the equally icky CGI Suicune from Movie 04.
But they “justify” it by having a full Movie 04, Ash and Misty in their race from Movie 05 and Ash flying on Flygon in Movie 06.
Ya know, I praised the last movie and even the last short with their homages to the previous movies. Showing the Legendaries from all of the movies in fantastic and NEW shots was great. Even seeing brief shots of the locations from the previous shorts was a nice addition to the final legit short.
This is just laziness. They didn’t even pick particularly good scenes from those movies, nor did most of these clips show the Legendaries of the movies.
Continuing on with the opening, there are a lot of Pokemon on earth but there might be more on other worlds. Cut to a weird meteor in space.
We get our title sequence, and despite it being really nicely done in regards to color choice and animation, the actual graphics look flat and uninspired. The final shot itself is just a silhouette of Deoxys. Also, why are the gong sounds from my grandma’s doorbell playing at the end while lights flash in sync to it?
Onto our credits sequence, which sadly still has no Pokemon opening song again, where we cut to the North Pole. A bunch of researchers are there doing researchy things when our movie main character, Tory’s, father and his assistant, Yuko, spot Tory with binoculars as he plays in the snow and befriends a Spheal.
The same meteor starts heading for earth, right where these researchers and Tory are, to be precise. A Rayquaza is watching the meteor fall from high up in the sky. I always loved Rayquaza but apparently I’m a rarity? I’ve been in at least two forum threads asking for favorite Dragon Pokemon, and Rayquaza was treated like a leper in both threads for no given reason.
The meteor lands closeby, causing Tory to fall and the nearby Walrein to stampede around him. He’s so frightened that he ends up passing out. Tory’s father saves him, and out from the meteor emerges Deoxys. It uncovers a big colorful rock in the snow, infuses it with power and causes a light to shoot up into the sky.
Rayquaza arrives and starts attacking Deoxys for some reason. The battle rages on, and Rayquaza actually manages to blow Deoxys’ arm clean off. Uhh….by the way, parents, Pokemon the First Movie: We’re Totally Against Violence We Promise, is on sale for everyone who skips this shot. Hehe…he….Broooother, my broooooother!
But don’t worry, Deoxys is obviously from Namek and can regenerate his arm just fine. Deoxys starts fighting back, and Tory’s father and Yuko take Tory and run off.
After getting a really good throat strike on Rayquaza, Deoxys and Rayquaza start to destroy the researchers’ equipment while trying to attack each other. Deoxys manages to get the upperhand, and just as its about to finish Rayquaza off, we get a shot of Rayquaza through Deoxys’ eyes which seem to constantly have a ripple Photoshop effect on them. Deoxys stops his attack, giving Rayquaza the opportunity to strike back again, but Deoxys defends itself with its defense form.
The battle rages on….and on….and on….I don’t much mind long battle sequences, I can sit through any arc of DBZ just fine, but this battle is going on for a bit too long with me not knowing what’s going on nor who to side with or care about. Am I against Rayquaza for attacking a seemingly innocent Deoxys? Is it actually trying to protect something? It’s obviously not protecting the researchers considering it’s helping destroy the place. Does Deoxys mean harm? What was the rock? What did it do when it glowed? Does Rayquaza want the rock? Just keep pummeling each other and explain later. I have time.
Long battle short, Deoxys earns a hearty Hyper Beam right to the face and ends up being disintegrated, leaving only an oval-shaped stone much like the one Deoxys found at the start behind, sinking into the depths of the ocean as Rayquaza returns to the ozone layer.
Oh wait, is it dead? Did Rayquaza just murder Deoxys? Geez, this movie is much shorter than I remember it.
The researchers take their only non-destroyed mode of transportation, a helicopter, out of the site while carrying the rock that Deoxys picked up earlier. Tory’s dad says that the reason Rayquaza was so mad was because Deoxys entered into his territory. Thanks, I could’ve used that information sometime at the start of the battle, but better late than never.
Cut to four years late – oh now you’re not afraid to use time cards, huh, 4Kids? Couldn’t use them in the movie about time travel, but you’ll use them here? Anyway, the researchers are now experimenting on the rock. They zap it with a laser in hopes of regenerating what I presume will be a different Deoxys, but they overload the system before the regeneration can be performed.
Older Tory talks to someone offscreen, and, as the researchers leave for the day, Yuko sees the stone glowing. Meanwhile, back in the old research site location, the ice begins to crack and break apart as a water spout shoots into the sky to reveal a newly revived Deoxys who spouts a bunch of pink light from his chest. Deoxys, you fool! Don’t you know that too much pink energy is dangerous!?
We cut to Ash, May, Max and Brock riding a magnet train and enjoying the sites of Larousse City, known for its high-tech gadgetry. However, Ash is more interested in its famous Battle Tower.
Team Rocket also shows up to the city in—holy crap, that’s the Magikarp sub! Wow, they haven’t used that in ages. Anyway, they arrive by water since the city is so close to the water, and I guess they’re too cheap to take the train. Aw the sub sunk! Does that mean it’s the legit end of that now?
We see our first example of the super high-tech city when a nearby child and his Poochyena throw a bottle into a high-tech trash can where apparently it needs to scan the item and open its lid for you before you can throw the trash away. Yes, let’s promote recycling and cleaning up your garbage by over-complicating a trash can and making a half-second task take five seconds.
Now, you’d think the scanner would at least make the process more efficient. It probably only allows certain types of items or scans them to understand where to send them in regards to recycling, and it probably keeps animals and stuff out of it.
Nope, it’s just there to detect when something, anything, is there to throw away.
This is shown when a nearby pair of Plusle and Minun decide to play with it. The instant it scans Minun it opens to let it in, which, when you think about it, is even worse than an animal getting into a regular garbage can. At least in that situation the animal has a good chance of getting out on its own. This trash can closes up tight once the item is inside, meaning the animal would probably die in there. Thanks, technology!
Plusle and Minun screw around with the garbage can some more by having Plusle activate the lid while Minun is on top, launching him up in the air. They knock it over, garbage goes everywhere, they laugh and walk away. Littering is not funny, you little delinquents!
A nearby Munchlax sees this and kindly puts the trash can back up. He tries to kick one of the bottles into the trash can in a pretty funny scene, but fails and sadly walks away. Aw, I wanted him to get it in.
Back with Ash and the others, we see another aspect of the movie that stood out to me – these weird floating block robots. Now, stopping myself for a minute, I like the idea of this city, but it does weird me out that it’s such a different environment for this show. Despite several displays of incredibly advanced technology, we’ve never really had them in such a high-tech environment before. Closest they get are the really big cities, and even that’s not terribly more high-tech than your average city in the real world.
Even having this take place in a city is a new thing for the movies since most of them have either taken place in a forest, a small town, or some desolate location.
I can’t really bring myself to say it’s all that great because, despite liking them in an environment that isn’t a forest, forest, forest or, on the rare occasion, a forest, it doesn’t really wow me at all. The only major note of this city, really, outside of the magnet train are these little colorful block robots that, for some reason, remind me of Cubix: Robots for Everyone and I didn’t even watch that show.
But just because these robots are pretty unique in the show, that really doesn’t mean they’re terribly interesting or fun. In fact, they’re downright annoying with their super-high-pitched voices.
The group stumbles upon one of these robots and it suddenly takes everyone’s individual pictures, strangely enough with a camera that looks like it was taken from the 1930’s, and logs their origin data somehow. It spits out passports for everyone that are needed to give people access to pretty much everything in the city. So, yeah, not only does it randomly take your picture, but it transmits the picture back to some headquarters place, your personal data is somehow recorded by these people and they give you a passport which monitors where you go and what you do. Where’s the fuhrer of this city?
Ash makes an idiot out of himself by accidentally getting on a moving sidewalk and trying to run against it. Some locals laugh at him for this, and one of them sends out his Blaziken to help Ash get on the proper sidewalk. He pisses Ash off by saying he was making a fool of himself and directs him to the Battle Tower.
Despite laughing at him and calling him a fool, Ash decides to be friendly to the guy, named Rafe, and asks to battle. He accepts and says he’ll see him at the Battle Tower. With Rafe are his two little annoying twin sisters who basically do all the typical annoying twin things like speaking in unison, constantly agreeing with each other and repeating things others say, again, in unison. Doesn’t help that their voices are so terribly high-pitched that it hurts.
God, who does their voices anyway?…..Rebecca Honig? Hm, I don’t recognize her other Pokemon roles. Let’s see what else she’s got….Cream the Rabbit from Sonic X?! I knew that level of annoyance was familiar.
There’s also some guy named Sid, another Trainer on his way to the Battle Tower who quickly falls for May, and Rebecca, yet another Battle Tower Trainer who uses her laptop all the time and also uses it to help in her battles.
They arrive at the Battle Tower, and Ash goes off to register while May, Max and Brock go off to the stands to spectate. We get some more shots of all the gadgets in the city which, again, are not really that impressive. One of those cube robots makes a screen to create a map of the tower for guests while another doles out ice cream, which is apparently free just as long as you show your passport. Free healthcare AND free ice cream!? The Pokemon world is awesome.
Ash gets lost because that’s what Ash does. Why didn’t he follow Rafe, Sid and Rebecca? They were all going to the same place yet they seem to disappear when they get to the tower.
There’s also a library at the Battle Tower for…some reason, and Ash sees Tory walking out of it. He tries to stop Tory to ask for help, but Tory freaks out at the sight of Pikachu and runs away. Tory tries to escape in an elevator, but Ash manages to jump in just in time. He explains his situation to Tory and asks for help, but Tory is too scared to answer and runs off again when the elevator stops. The boys are both stopped by an employee at the tower who sends them on a conveyor belt track to the Battle Arena. A machine scans Ash and Tory and detects their passports, instantly registering them for the tower.
Rebecca tries to get in, but doesn’t arrive on time. She was ahead of Ash and the others, and Ash was lost, how the hell was she late?
Also, this place is so high-tech that practically everything is a gadget yet it can’t detect that Tory has no Pokemon of his own and thus wouldn’t be able to battle? And aren’t Pokemon Trainers registered in some mass system?
They arrive in the Battle Tower stadium to have a tag team battle, and Rebecca joins May, Max and Brock in the audience.
May: “I wonder how Ash got registered so quickly.”
Rebecca: “By cutting in front of me.”
How did Ash cut in line? There was no line. There is no registration line. You go down to the basement and some big guy throws you in there without even asking you any questions. The system automatically registers you once you’re already heading to the stadium and your match is set up. You didn’t get in because you arrived behind Ash and Tory for no given reason despite having a huge head start.
Ash and Tory’s opponents come into the stadium and its, predictably enough, Rafe and Sid. The announcers gives the conditions of battle – a tag team match with only one Pokemon used per Trainer – and Rafe and Sid release their Pokemon first. Rafe sends out his Blaziken while Sid sends out a Blastoise. Ash sends out Pikachu and asks what Pokemon Tory will use, but as we all have figured out two minutes ago, Tory has no Pokemon to battle with.
With no second Pokemon on their side, Ash and Tory are set to forfeit by default. Ash decides to lend one of his Pokemon to Tory with which to battle. I don’t understand why that wouldn’t be against the rules, but whatever. Tory figures he has no choice so he sends out Ash’s Torkoal to battle.
The battle begins, and Rafe starts by sending Blaziken out to hit Pikachu with a Blaze Kick. Pikachu jumps up to dodge, but Blastoise knocks it away with Hydro Pump. Sid commands Blastoise to use Bubble on Torkoal. The Bubble attack hits, and Ash tells Tory to give commands to Torkoal, but since he’s not a Trainer he doesn’t know what to do.
Blastoise does a Rapid Spin into Torkoal, sending him flying and causing everything to slow down in Tory’s perspective as Blastoise gets close to him while spinning. We flash back to Tory in the middle of the Walrein stampede, causing Tory to freeze up.
This solidifies his fear in Pokemon, allowing me to bring up a big problem with this whole scenario. Tory is scared to death of Pokemon to the point where even cute little Pikachu sends him running off like a horror movie target…..Okay…before I get to the big picture, why the hell was Tory in, of all things, the Battle Tower? That place is crawling with Pokemon, and the tower itself is meant to be a place where Trainers can come together to battle each other. Why would he go there?
Yes, there’s a library there, and Tory, being a researcher’s son, probably has a thirst for learning, but I assume with all the technology in this city and his dad having access to untold amounts of information surely there’s really no reason for him to brave a Pokemon-ridden tower to read some books. Use a Kindle….use the Internet, have books delivered to your house. You have lots of options, kid.
Next, how the hell does he get through life like this? He lives in the Pokemon world where practically everything is dedicated to Pokemon in some way. Where, if you are somehow a rarity who dislikes Pokemon, you’ll be treated like a leper and eventually have to conform and like Pokemon after being ceaselessly prodded by others. Pokemon are everywhere in this series. Friggin’ everywhere. How does he stay sane even merely leaving his house when the average person probably sees or interacts with at least one to five Pokemon per day?
Finally, really? The reason he fears Pokemon this much is because of the Walrein stampede? Granted, yes, that would probably be scary for young Tory, but he didn’t get hurt in that stampede….at all. They ran around him. Would that slightly frightening experience be so bad that he would end up being this emotionally scarred for so long? And why does it encompass all Pokemon, even small cutesy ones? Shouldn’t he just be afraid of Walrein? That’s like developing a fear of dogs after having one run past you and then being afraid of bunnies as a consequence.
Back to the action, Pikachu tries to defend Torkoal with a Thunderbolt to Blastoise, but Blaziken counters with a Flamethrower. Blastoise regains his composure and Skull Bashes Pikachu, knocking him into Torkoal and pinning him under his shell.
Ash decides to take the reigns for Torkoal too—Okay now he’s controlling his ‘partner’s’ Pokemon. Surely that is against the rules!
Apparently it isn’t, and Ash commands Torkoal to use Flamethrower. It does, but accidentally burns Pikachu’s tail in the process. Torkoal, upset at accidentally hurting Pikachu, starts crying and sending smoke everywhere. Geez, I’m embarrassed for them. Rafe finishes off Pikachu and Torkoal with Overheat and Ash and Tory are defeated.
Tory’s dad and Yuko show up to the Battle Tower. They had watched his battle on television and went to the tower to tell him how proud they were. Tory tells them not to be proud because the whole thing was an accident and runs off.
Brock gushes over Yuko and – Since when does Brock discuss Professor Ivy without becoming a depressed lump in the corner? Anyway, Yuko explains Tory’s situation with his childhood trauma and being afraid of all Pokemon because of it. Yuko believes he really loves Pokemon deep down, like he used to as a small child, but he needs to get to know them again to get over his fear. Ash, feeling guilty over pushing Tory so hard in the Battle Tower when he has a fear of Pokemon, decides to take it upon himself to show Tory how great Pokemon really are. See? I told you. You must all like Pokemon!
Back with Tory, the Plusle from earlier tries to get Tory’s attention, but he shoos him away. Plusle runs to a knocked over trash can where his brother is trapped and begs Tory to help. Again, told ya so. Despite his fears, he decides to help them out, and, just as Ash comes out to meet him, Tory frees Minun from the garbage can. Plusle and Minun happily reunite and try to thank Tory by giving him a hug, but he backs away before they can touch him and runs off.
Munchlax shows up again to pick up the trash can and tries again to kick a bottle into the can. This time he succeeds. Yay! I love that little guy.
Ash follows Tory to some garden where he speaks with the unseen being from earlier, only this time we get to see what it is.
A big sparkly glowy piece of intergalactic Flubber made of light….Yeah….yeah that pretty much sums it up.
He excitedly tells the Flubber thing about what happened with the Plusle and Minun when we cut to Deoxys. Oh right, the plot! I completely forgot about that part of the movie…..Sad thing is, I’m not even really joking. We haven’t so much as mused about Deoxys, Legendary Pokemon or anything main plot related for over 15 minutes.
Deoxys lands in Larousse City and expels all its pink energy into the sky again, creating an aurora borealis effect. And….that’s it for now. Hope you enjoyed it.
As Tory continues to talk with Flubber, Ash shows up and asks who he’s speaking with. Flubber disappears in response and so does the pink light.
He badgers Tory about who he was talking to and tries to talk with him, but Tory keeps telling him to go away. He accidentally spooks a flock of Wingull, which causes him to fall down in fright. Ash runs to his side to see if he’s okay, but Tory knocks Ash down when he gets scared by Pikachu.
Angered, Ash grabs Tory by the shirt, but May arrives to calm him down. Trying to create an opportunity for everyone to become friends, Brock cooks up a fondue. Wasn’t aware Brock was a housewife from the 1950s but okay.
Seeing the food, a bunch of other Pokemon arrive. Brock gives them some bowls of Pokemon food and May and Ash try to get Tory adapted to the Pokemon. Ash even offers to have Tory pet Pikachu. He starts to try, but ends up pulling his hand away in fear.
Tory thanks the group for trying to help him and runs off. Munchlax returns again to eat the group’s lunch. Once he’s done, he jumps up 300 feet in the air, lands quietly and walks off……What the hell was that even? Why is this Munchlax so adorably funny?
The Plusle and Minun from before arrive to have some food too, and I’m just now realizing that these two are basically the Pichu Bros. They already look almost exactly like Pichu to begin with, they’re brothers and they cause a bunch of trouble. Huh.
The plot returns again, and this time Deoxys is just destroying stuff in the city. He creates the pink light again and….we’re back to Ash and the others again. Bye, again, plot!
They marvel at the lights, and Rebecca explains that they shouldn’t be able to see aurora lights since they’re usually only viewable at the North and South Poles. A bunch of awkward flirting goes on with Sid and May and Brock and Rebecca. Brock also gets really demanding with Rebecca for some reason, basically yelling at her to spend time with him.
Rafe arrives to give a few jabs to Ash for losing so badly earlier, and Ash asks for a rematch at the Battle Tower tomorrow. Rafe agrees and starts to leave. I guess he was only there to pick on Ash.
He stops when he sees Tory, who came back to share a big basket of cookies with everyone. Oh did I say cookies? Let me clarify – they’re Pokemon cookies because what else would they be?
Everyone lets out their Pokemon to have some cookies and enjoy the night, and this was the one part of this movie that kept me coming back. This is really just a scene with the Pokemon having fun and playing while Tory gets slowly closer to them, but the real reason I liked the scene was because the song, while being kinda cheesy, was also really catchy. Yup, just a moderately decent and catchy song with nothing important happening on screen was the one reason I usually stayed to watch this movie.
Apparently Rafe’s sisters also have Pokemon; a Surskit and a Masquerain. Not that it ever matters at all but there ya go. In addition, I guess the only Pokemon that Rafe and Sid have are Blaziken and Blastoise respectively.
….This scene is cheesier than I remember. The song’s lyrics are cheesier than I remember, the scenes themselves get downright dorky sometimes like the sudden quick cuts of all the Pokemon playing in the pipes, and its saturated with sugar. I don’t dislike the scene, but it’s definitely a bit of diabetes.
Team Rocket arrives to take the food from their picnic. Oh yeah, they’ve been here the whole movie again, I just didn’t mention it because, like always, they don’t do anything but complain about food and get hurt. Only reason I’m mentioning them here is because Munchlax ruins their thieving plans by bogarting the food himself and running off, making Team Rocket give chase.
The light disappears, and Deoxys knocks some more stuff and Pokemon over. And then he……Oh okay, back with Ash and Tory again. Don’t worry, it’s not like the movie is about Deoxys or anything.
Tory tells Ash that he’s never really had fun with a bunch of friends before and believes it to be because of his fear of Pokemon. See?! Your life is ruined if you don’t like Pokemon! I am on a roll.
Pikachu offers to have Tory pet him again to prove that he’s finally getting over his fear of Pokemon. He tries again, yet Corphish butts in and freaks him out, making him run off. Way to go, Corphish. Ash calms him, but the attempt to get closer to Pokemon is again ruined.
The next day, Tory brings the whole group to his father’s lab where Tory introduces everyone to Flubber out in the garden.
The Pokemon B-Squad let out their Pokemon to meet Flubber while Rebecca tries to analyze it with her computer.
Back with the “main plot” Rayquaza is making its way to the city to confront Deoxys. Oh and apparently Officer Jenny is the leader of the security guys for this city. You’re all screwed.
Professor Lund (Tory’s Dad) tells Officer Jenny that if Rayquaza and Deoxys meet and battle there, the city will mostly likely be destroyed. He calls for an evacuation, and Jenny agrees with his request.
This is really random and minor, but when the people start evacuating a guy gets on a train wearing a dress, sways back and forth and says ‘it’s party time!’ He’s never seen or brought up again.
Ash and the others are trapped in the garden since Deoxys has been messing with all of the electrical devices in town, making the passport system not work. Professor Lund tries to get to Tory but ends up getting caught on the moving sidewalk when it reboots.
Millions of cube robots then come together to make a bridge away from the city and into a different one, which uh yeah, screw that. Everything is being disabled by Deoxys, meaning that once these robots get hit everyone on the bridge will be right in the water. Not to mention this bridge doesn’t have side rails which Professor Lund could’ve really used to keep him from falling in the water like he does.
Officer Jenny drives by in a boat the instant Professor Lund falls into the water and saves him. Really convenient considering she didn’t know where he was or what he was doing.
Deoxys makes a bunch of clones of itself and starts kidnapping people. Rayquaza shows up and starts attacking Deoxys. It puts up a force field around most of the city, somehow draining power from everything, which results in the cube bridge breaking apart and falling into the water. How many times am I going to say ‘I told you so’ in this movie? Luckily no one was on it because apparently a whole-city evacuation can occur in a minute and a half.
Rayquaza is trapped behind the force field, and we return to the group where Sid and Blastoise are trying to pull open the doors to the garden. Hey guys, you could probably save yourself a lot of trouble if you just broke the GLASS doors. Rebecca’s Metagross simply walking into them would probably break them.
Deoxys arrives at the garden and makes more clones which kidnap Sid and Blastoise as they try to protect May. Tory leads everyone to the exit while Rafe and Ash try to buy some time by defeating the clone Deoxyses….Deoxyi….clones with Pikachu and Blaziken.
Ash: “Way to go, Rafe!”
Rafe: “All in a day’s work!” Yeah, way to go, Rafe. You stood there and watched as your Pokemon did all the work after you merely gave it one command to do one attack. The skillz to pay the billz.
After they manage to unlock the passage for the underground exit, which is weird considering I thought most of the power to the city was drained, including the power in the garden which is why they couldn’t get out the front door to begin with, the group calls Ash and Rafe to follow them.
Even the Pokemon are getting taken away by the clones, but Plusle and Minun as well as Munchlax manage to hide in a pipe.
Yuko explains the full situation to the group, and its revealed that the malfunctions of electronic equipment is so widespread that even the Pokeball management system is down, making it impossible to expand, contract or open Pokeballs. Wait, that means that the main group can’t use any of their Pokemon and they’re reliant on Metagross, Blaziken, Pikachu, Surskit and Masquerain now? Do these movies do everything in their power to keep the other Pokemon out of the fun?
Also, how does Rebecca’s laptop work if everything’s so screwed that even the Pokeballs, which always seem to work no matter what, are broken because of these electrical disturbances? This whole situation raises a ton of questions. If Pokeballs need to be on some network to work, does that mean they have their own Wifi or something? Do they have towers everywhere to provide signals no matter where you are? Do Pokeballs need charging? Do they have eternal power sources? Why would you need a connection to some network to enlarge, shrink and open/close your Pokeballs? Are they tracking everything your Pokeballs do?
After an unnecessary retelling of the story with Deoxys and Rayquaza, complete with flashback clip show of everything that happened, the group hears a strange noise in their hideout. Ash and Rafe go to investigate.
They discover that it’s merely Plusle and Minun as well as Munchlax. Plusle and Minun run to greet Tory, but he runs away from them again. Ash, Brock, Rafe, Rebecca and Tory decide to leave and split up. Rafe and Rebecca go off to see where the Deoxys are holding everyone who was kidnapped while Ash, Tory and Brock go to find food. However, the food machines won’t activate in response to the passports. Pikachu decides to shock the machine to power it up, and it starts shooting hot dogs everywhere.
As they try to catch the hot dogs:
Brock: “Gotta catch ’em all!”
Gotta vomit in this bucket for that terribly forced catchphrase!
Deoxys clones come to kidnap them, but Plusle and Minun arrive to fight them off. Sadly, Minun gets captured while trying to save Tory.
They run off, and a Deoxys clone kidnaps the hot d—Noooooooooooo!! Not the hot dog cart! Do you have no mercy, Deoxys?! You monster!
Ash and the others hide from the Deoxys clones in a warehouse, and Tory tries to pet Plusle as an apology for what happened to Minun, but still can’t manage to touch it.
Back with Rebecca and Rafe, they see that the clones are putting all of the kidnapped people, Pokemon and machines into some domed building. The hot dog cart actually begs to be released, and when it runs out of power, the clone drops it into the river! D:
The next morning, the clones find the group and start breaking into their hideout so they decide to head to an underground laboratory to hide yet again. Yuko shows the group the stone that they were experimenting on and explains that it’s a part of a different Deoxys, same as the stone that fell from Deoxys’ body four years ago when it was destroyed by Rayquaza. More specifically, though the movie doesn’t mention it, it’s supposedly Deoxys’ brain.
Flubber emerges from the stone, revealing that Flubber is actually another Deoxys in an incomplete form. Rebecca analyzes the light and compares the wavelengths to those of the lights in the sky that Deoxys produced. She concludes that the lights are actually communication signals and that the green light means ‘friend’ and the pink light means ‘where are you?’
….Okay, I can swallow that she deduced that the lights were communicative signals sent between the two Deoxys, but how the hell is she translating Pokemon speak? Alien Pokemon speak! Alien Pokemon speak that is performed through lights! Just with her laptop?! They’ve been researching that stone for four years and haven’t been able to do much with it, but Rebecca and her laptop have the whole situation figured out in two minutes.
Ash and the others conclude that Deoxys does not really mean harm, its just trying to find its friend. Yuko further explains that Deoxys sees through electromagnetic signals, and all of the people, Pokemon and machines, all beings that give off electromagnetic signals, were clouding its vision as it searched for its friend so it was breaking electrical items and kidnapping everyone to clear up its sight.
The group decides to regenerate the other Deoxys so it can reunite with its friend and they can leave the planet, hopefully sparing them from a city-destroying battle between Rayquaza and Deoxys. They don’t have enough emergency backup power, which also shouldn’t be working, so they team up to generate some power. They formulate a plan to free all of the kidnapped people and Pokemon.
As they head to the building where the kidnap victims are being kept, Deoxys cuts them off. Ash tries but fails to reason with it before it clones itself some more and attacks them. They fend of the clones and start to find another way around, but Rafe decides to stay behind with Blaziken to buy them some time.
Rafe: “Just make sure nothing happens to my sisters, Ash.”
Oh yeah, those sisters who have contributed so much to the movie like………Not getting names and being annoying.
Rayquaza uses a Hyper Beam to break through the force field and get into the city. Wow, it just now realized to do that about 12 hours after the force field was put up. Super smart, Rayquaza.
The clones surround Blaziken and Rafe and they allow themselves to get kidnapped.
Meanwhile, Rayquaza starts destroying Deoxys clones while Ash and the others continue to run and execute their plan. Munchlax runs in the opposite direction, but Max has no time to get it back.
As Ash and the others meet back up with Rafe and Sid to start their plan, the clones disappear and the real Deoxys and Rayquaza meet in the flesh. Oooh, it’s time for the main event!
Ladiiiiiieeeessssss and gentlleeemeeeennnnnnnnnn!! Let’s get ready to rummmmmmmmmmmbllllllllllllleeeeeeeee!! In this corner, weighing in at 454 pounds, the Sky High Pokemon – Raaaaaaaaaaayquazaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!
In this corner, weighing in at 134 pounds, the DNA Pokemon, Deeeeeeeeeeeoxyyyyyyyyyysssssssss!!
The two stare down, ready to battle and…..! We cut back to Ash and the others.
Ash and Tory command Plusle and Pikachu to feed power into the building while Minun does the same on the other side of the door. With power restored, the entrance is opened and everyone is reunited, including Plusle and Minun.
Back to the action, *cough* Rayquaza is chasing after Deoxys, leaving a wake of destruction behind him! Oooh! Deoxys fights back and gets a good shot off on Rayquaza, but it maintains its composure before hitting the ground! The chase and destruction continue, but who will come out the victor?! Find out after a word from our sponsor.
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Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.
Tory and Ash go back to the lab to see how the regeneration is going as power is restored. Everything’s set to start the process, and Ash gives Tory the honor of restoring his friend back to full form. He starts the laser, but they still need 20% more energy to get it to full power. Pikachu, Plusle and Minun get on the case and their power is enough to get the laser to finally work. The other Deoxys is restored to full form. As, I guess, a means of thanking them, Deoxys releases the Flubber light again and surrounds them in teal light.
Tory asks if it wants to go find the other Deoxys, and it lifts them up with psychic abilities and flies them along with it. It also destroys the roof of the place for no reason. Good job, Deoxys.
Meanwhile, the pink Deoxys is getting its ass beat by Rayquaza again. After being slammed into the ground, the force field dissipates.
Things are looking bad for Deoxys, and Rayquaza is ready to celebrate its victory! The referee is about to call the match, but what’s this?! Deoxys is getting back up, and it doesn’t look happy! Rayquaza shoots off another Hyper Beam, but Deoxys defends itself with a shield of rocks! INSANE! And out from the smoke comes Deoxys who body slams Rayquaza into a nearby bridge! I hope they had insurance, most preferably from our sponsor, Shay Dee Insurance company. For when Legendary Dragon Pokemon and aliens smash into your stuff; don’t trust anyone but our Shay Dee Insurance salesmen!
Rayquaza doles out another Hyper Beam yet again, but misses, and Deoxys counters by smacking Rayquaza right in the face! Rayquaza is down! And Deoxys looks ready to finish the match with one of its Psychic Boosts! A direct hit! Rayquaza is not looking good. Will Rayquaza throw in the towel?!
Ooh, Deoxys is showing no mercy even while Rayquaza is down as it Night Shades him further into submission! Deoxys is set to throw another Psychic Boost, and I think this is the last shot for Rayquaza!
An upset! The other Deoxys has shown up in defense form to protect Rayquaza from the attack! Simply amazing! I haven’t seen a move like that since the last time I saw a move like that!
Anyway, the two Deoxys meet and the green stone’d one sets off its green lights while the pink stone’d Deoxys lets out its pink light. I don’t know what they’re saying, but if anyone does please enlighten me.
Everyone marvels at the pretty lights which combine as the two Deoxys get closer and start to dance around each other but–
Rayquaza shoots out of the rubble looking for trouble and shoots off a Hyper Beam towards the two Deoxys! The lights are gone, and we now have a sudden tag team match, ladies and gentlemen!
Rayquaza is shooting off Hyper Beams like they’re going out of style, but the two Deoxys double Night Shade Rayquaza into a nearby building! That move can’t be legal, but the ref appears to be crushed under twenty tons of rubble!
Two small boys and an overpowered rodent nearly get hit by Rayquaza’s body, but the two Deoxys save them in the nick of time! Rayquaza’s down again, but he’s not out as he gets back up and continues his assault, even knocking over a—Nooooooo!! Not a different hot dog cart! This movie is turning into a hot dog cart massacre!
The city is being demolished at every turn, and the two Deoxys are doing everything in their power to restrain Rayquaza.
The Pokemon crash into some building where I think is the main terminal for the cube robots. The Hyper Beam from Rayquaza creates a sudden surge of energy which somehow turns the newly restarted cube robots red, gives them angry faces and causes them to go out of control, creating a wave of blocks over the city.
Rayquaza gets taken down yet again and gets caught up in the wave of blocks. The two Deoxys go into defense form and protect Rayquaza while Plusle and Minun return to save Ash and Tory from the blocks. Professor Lund communicates to them through a screen behind them, though I don’t know how he knew they were there, and tells the boys that they need to get to the chief block robot and present it with a passport. That should open a channel that will give Professor Lund and the others access to the hub to disable them.
And let me just say, wow, there are way too many block robots in this city. There have to have hundreds of millions of those things. The blocks are covering the Battle Tower and they soon smash into the screen that Professor Lund was talking to them through.
Tory, Ash, Pikachu, Plusle and Minun hitch a ride on—the hot dog cart! Can’t you leave that poor thing alone? As they try to grab onto some nearby towers, Munchlax emerges from the hot dog cart while eating some hot dogs. As it falls into the sea of blocks, it evolves into Snorlax. I guess, in order to evolve, Munchlax just needs a hot dog fix.
Ash uses Snorlax as a bridge to hop over to the towers, and Snorlax sinks into the blocks. Ash and Pikachu climb the tower and hop on the floating blocks to the Chief robot and Ash tries to present his passport to it, but drops it.
Tory throws him his passport, but he misses the catch.
Pikachu jumps off, smacks the card with his tail so Ash can finally catch it, but Pikachu ends up getting carried away by the blocks.
Ash presents Tory’s passport to the chief robot and it accepts the scan, allowing Officer Jenny to override the blocks and shut them down.
Everything’s all fine and dandy, Tory, Plusle and Minun observe the stopped block robots, but the brothers fall off of the gigantic tower of blocks. Tory, in his big show of getting over his fear of Pokemon, jumps off and grabs them both. Tory dies from the fall, the end.
Ahh, of course not. Deoxys….Uh one of them, I can’t see which, emerges from the blocks and flies up to save Tory, Plusle and Minun.
Pikachu emerges from the blocks as well….on top of Rayquaza’s head. But he’s plucked off of his head psychically by the other Deoxys who picks up Ash as well.
The two Deoxys and….Ray…quaza…..fly around….happily together…wait, what? Did Rayquaza really get over his insane blood lust of Deoxys just because it shielded it from completely non-lethal plastic and metal blocks?
I guess so, and then Rayquaza just leaves.
*cough cough* And everyone becomes friends, and lives happily ever after! Yes, folks, this is a pretty damn crappy ending to this fight that wasn’t even that great to begin with, but I must remind you that we have a strict ‘no refunds’ policy. If you want to cry about it, use Tear Dri tissues. Tear Dri – for when movies are especially disappointing. Now in new lavender scent.
As I was saying, everything’s all fine and dandy now. Tory reunites with his dad, he shows him his new friends Plusle and Minun who cuddle the crap out of his face. The two Deoxys bid goodbye to everyone with their pretty lights, Team Rocket continues to power the windmills with their stationary bike in the bushes for some reason, there is untold amounts of property damage to the city, millions of block robots lay brick’d on the ground and in several buildings, millions of people were unable to return to their homes for months, and all of this really means that they ultimately failed in protecting the city.
In terms of credits, we just get a longer version of the insert song ‘This Side of Paradise’ with a shot of Rayquaza flying, a shot of a block robot flying around the city, Ash and the others leaving Larousse City and bidding farewell to Tory, Professor Lund and Yuko, Ash and the main group riding on the magnet train with the side characters, Rafe and his sisters getting off the train, Sid getting off the train and bidding goodbye to May, Rebecca getting off the train and waving goodbye to a forlorn Brock, and then the typical shots of the group camping and walking. Though, for some reason, during the walking shot, they add the faces of the group in squares in front of the shot. Thanks to the way the dubbed movie is cropped, Ash and May’s faces are sliced in half during this.
Pikachu does some cheerleading in front of a five year old’s birthday card design, and the shot of him doing that is repeated in numerous blocks. Then all of the Pokemon in the movie do some cheerleading…I don’t know what’s going on anymore but Blastoise cheerleading is priceless. This song gets really repetitive. Not as bad as ‘Cele-B-R-A-T-E’ but still really repetitive…. End please.
So…..I don’t like this movie. I don’t really have anything to hate, but I have even less to enjoy.
This movie was the first Pokemon movie to not be accompanied by a short film, meaning an extra 20 or so minutes was added to the runtime than is usually allotted for Pokemon movies, and I really don’t think they used this time well at all.
Deoxys is a side character in its own movie. Notice how much of the movie is dedicated to two things – the Battle Tower and Tory’s fear of Pokemon. The stuff with Deoxys and Rayquaza never seems like its the actual focus until the very end, and most of Deoxys’ screentime is shared with Rayquaza who is only there because of a very petty reason.
At first it was reasonable for Rayquaza to be upset that Deoxys entered into its territory of the ozone layer. The first battle, in that regard, was understandable. The fact that it somehow sensed Deoxys’ return four years later, hunted it down halfway across the globe to kill it when it did not repeat the same mistake of entering into its territory is stretching it rice-paper thin to me.
Throughout much of the movie you don’t even understand which of them is the bad guy. Deoxys destroys stuff too for seemingly no reason much of the time.
Deoxys’ story as a whole is incomplete. He came to earth to find his friend. Okay, I get that. Why is his Deoxys friend on earth? Why is it ‘dead’? Why couldn’t it regenerate after spending so long dormant in its stone form if the other Deoxys fully regenerated in four years? Why was the Deoxys’ in stone form? What ‘killed’ it? How long has it been here? Why did it take so long for Deoxys to arrive on earth to rejoin its friend? It was embedded in meteorite, meaning it must have been in there for hundreds, thousands or even millions of years. How did they get separated to begin with? Why was the green Deoxys able to turn into a light while dormant in its stone form and move about freely? Shouldn’t the pink Deoxys have had that ability too?
The movie doesn’t even touch upon Deoxys’ origins, which, according to its Dex entry, is that it was formed by the DNA of a space virus after being hit with a laser. It’s a pretty silly origin to me, even if it probably has more basis in science than most other Legendaries, but they at least could’ve worked that in there considering it’s one of Deoxys’ only forms of lore. Speaking of which, if that origin is true, how is there more than one Deoxys?
Why did Rayquaza just up and forgive both Deoxys after holding such an intense grudge? The whole battle against Rayquaza ultimately seems pointless and poorly executed. The battle itself wasn’t even anything that epic. It’s just a back and forth of Hyper Beams and Psychic Boost with Night Shade.
Touching upon the Battle Tower aspect before we get back to Tory’s plot line, this part of the story takes up quite a bit of time and yet ultimately amounts to nothing. It does introduce Tory to Ash, but that could’ve been achieved without the lengthy battle sequence, and it was already established before the battle that Tory was afraid of Pokemon.
Don’t get me wrong, I find the Battle Tower segment to be one of the more enjoyable parts of the movie. Mostly because, outside of opening theme sequences, we just don’t get to see many legit Pokemon battles in these movies. But not only was it long and had nothing really to do with anything, but the battle itself was painful to watch and awkward. Not to mention we didn’t get to see Rebecca battle at all outside of one attack near the end.
The Battle Tower did allow us to get some other Trainer side characters in a movie for a change – ones that actually get names that are said on screen and do things that matter to the plot. What a novel concept, huh Movie 01?
However, the rivalry between Rafe and Ash is never resolved. They set it up several times throughout the movie, even seemingly interrupting things to butt it into the plot. They say they’ll battle again in the Battle Tower in a legit match, but they never have one. That could’ve been at least included in the ending credits, but nope. It’s like they forgot about it.
Rafe’s little sisters, as I said, amounted to absolutely nothing. Rafe doesn’t make a big show of protecting them, they barely even talk to him, Ash doesn’t focus on protecting them for Rafe, they don’t battle or contribute anything, they’re just set dressing. Annoying….annoying set dressing. Luckily they didn’t get many lines.
Sid was a little entertaining, and I’m glad that they had May be nice and respectful of him instead of being cliché and being repulsed by him merely because he’s overweight and has a crush on her. He was nice and not really creepy with his attention to May.
Rebecca wasn’t really necessary to me. Her role could’ve easily been taken by Yuko with really nothing changed. I didn’t mind Rebecca at all and she did dole out some exposition a la laptop, but still.
Getting back to the main plot issue at hand, the actual main plot of the story being Tory’s fear of Pokemon and him spending time with Ash and the others as he tries to get over this fear. I didn’t clock it, but I’m almost certain that this part of the movie really does take up significantly more runtime than the Deoxys one.
Here’s the deal, this isn’t the first time that something like this has happened. Similar setups have occurred in Movies 04 and 06. You can have a plot line that takes focus away from the Legendary plot line and have it work to the film’s advantage. While Movie 04 had problems with this, Movie 06 ironed them out, and both movies did a pretty decent job with it overall.
This movie does not.
I really don’t have any problems with a plot point involving someone getting over a fear of Pokemon, but here it feels like it’s merely an extended plot from any average episode of Pokemon. In fact, I’m almost certain a similar plot has appeared in the show.
My problem is that I find the reason for his fear to be pretty silly. I know phobias are irrational fears by definition, and even here the fear is somewhat founded because, let’s not kid ourselves, Pokemon can be very dangerous. I also know that even if a situation doesn’t seem traumatic, it can be. But looking at it as a storyline, it’s just silly.
Walrein stampede around him as a child, he doesn’t get touched by them, kinda faints because of it and as a result of this he is scared to death of all Pokemon for years. Like I said, even putting realistic logic in there would mean Tory would just be afraid of Walrein or at most all Pokemon similar to Walrein like Dewgong, but no. It’s every Pokemon in existence, no matter how cute, cuddly or harmless.
Not to mention that it really does get old to watch him try to simply touch a Pokemon and then run off. Over and over and over.
You’re telling me Yuko and Professor Lund never once thought over the four years that he’s been struggling with this fear to help him out with this? This fear has left him with no friends and no life, and yet, like always, a group of random children have to solve the problem for the adults because it seems like they either won’t get off their asses and try or they’re too stupid to know what to do to try.
One of the bigger issues with this plot is that it has absolutely nothing to do with Deoxys. What do the more human plot threads of Movie 04 and 06, and in a different light, Movie 03, have in common?
While the plot itself may not be completely centered on the Legendary Pokemon, they are big parts of it.
Movie 03 – the Unown make Molly’s dream reality to help her escape into a world with her ‘papa’, an Entei, to protect her and stay with her since her real parents are gone.
Movie 04 – Sam is ‘stuck’ in the future because of Celebi’s time traveling abilities after protecting it from a poacher. Celebi is the only one who can bring him back home.
Movie 06 – Jirachi needs Max to act like a partner and guardian to him as his lives out his one week of being awake before returning to stone form. Max befriends Jirachi and learns about letting go.
Movie 07 – Tory is scared to death of Pokemon after nearly getting trampled by a bunch of Walrein. Ash and the others try to get him over this fear to help improve his quality of life.
Tory’s story has nothing whatsoever to do with Deoxys. Yes, Deoxys caused the disturbance which made the Walrein stampede, but I don’t even think Tory really got a good look at Deoxys back then considering it was bathed in light during this point, and that’s mostly unrelated.
Also, his friendship with green Deoxys doesn’t change things much either. Nothing would’ve really been different had Tory not befriended Flubber. It didn’t affect Tory or green Deoxys at all. It’s not like the Deoxys hated humans and Tory’s friendship with one of them quelled the destruction. They were just muddling up its vision.
He also has nothing to do with Rayquaza. It would’ve been better to have Tory nearly or actually get caught up in one of Rayquaza’s many Hyper Beams. It probably wouldn’t hurt him too much, being Pokemon, it would connect him to the Legendaries and give him a stronger reason to be so afraid of Pokemon in general.
You can’t give a Legendary top billing, give most of the movie to a human character and then not have the human strongly connected to the Legendary. It just makes the movie seem horribly disjointed.
As for Tory himself, he’s another problem to me. Tory’s dull as dishwater. His only trait is being afraid of Pokemon and being a nice kid. I suppose he also has an interesting character design, but that’s it. He’s not particularly smart, skilled or fun.
In fact, looking at it, it’s almost like they took all the possible character traits for Tory and gave them to the Battle Tower group. Rafe is skilled with Pokemon and he’s cool, Sid is fun and dorky, Rebecca’s very smart and the twins are annoying. They just forgot to leave a character trait for Tory.
While we’re on the topic of characters, May, Max and Brock barely got to do anything either. They were definitely more included than Brock and Misty were in Movie 05, but they still didn’t get to do much of anything. They help in trying to get Tory over his fear and in getting the windmills going, but outside of that they don’t get to do much. They can’t really participate anyway since their Pokemon are stuck in their Pokeballs for a good chunk of the movie, and for some reason they didn’t let any out to meet Flubber like the Battle Tower group.
Finally, I find the ending to be flat out dumb. There are really that many block robots in this city? Enough to make a city-destroying tsunami of blocks? And they really needed to make that the big disaster of the movie instead of something actually related to the plot? It comes out of nowhere.
At least in Movie 05 the big flood was somewhat foreshadowed. This was totally random and, again, has really nothing to do with our main plot. Who is afraid of a bunch of block robots with cartoony emoticon faces and six-year-old child voices anyway?
This ending also could’ve been resolved very easily with Deoxys. It’s been causing electromagnetic mayhem everywhere, right? It’s been causing power outages and malfunctions all over the city – even, coincidentally enough, disabling the block robots. So why could it not simply disable them with those same abilities instead of just becoming a shield for Rayquaza? If you really needed to do that, couldn’t you have Deoxys, preferably the pink stone one, protect Rayquaza while the green one disables the robots? Why could Rayquaza not destroy a good chunk of these blocks with its Hyper Beams?
What, did you not want to take away from the epic ending of Ash swiping his passport to stop the robots? You know, I always thought the ending of Star Wars would’ve been better if Luke had just destroyed the Death Star by filing a complaint in to the empire.
Considering that the Rayquaza and Deoxys battle didn’t have many epic moments (Blowing Deoxys’ arm off was, admittedly, as metal as this show can get) or an actual ending, that means this movie has two lame climaxes. The only technically ‘epic’ part of the movie is when the two Deoxys meet and merge their lights, but considering we’ve been seeing these lights the whole movie and them combining really makes them less impressive in regards to color, to be honest, it’s really not something to write home about.
Even the credits were slightly disappointing because the movies usually use that time to let the art department have some fun by putting the main group in a bunch of detailed and quite visually appealing environments that we typically don’t get to see them in, but here they spend most of the credits on the train. We get one detailed shot of them camping and then the rest is weird cheerleading by the Pokemon in front of a cheesy 90’s-esque background.
Art and Animation: Better than the series, but I still noticed quite a few bad shots such as this.
What is up with James’ face?
The animation is on par with basically all of the movies, and despite my poke at the CGI in the opener, the rest of the CGI with the robots is pretty decent. I can thank God that they didn’t make Rayquaza CGI. They did make Deoxys CGI a few times, but that was it, and it wasn’t bad. Also, I should mention that the cinematography in this movie is really great. Nothing breathtaking, but some shots were wonderfully lit, had great angles and created really good atmosphere.
I will mention one part during the evacuation where the people are walking up a ramp to get on a plane and they’re very obviously simple CGI walk cycles being slid across the ramp.
Music: Outside of the insert song, which is also the ED, nothing really stood out to me here as particularly good or bad. Though ‘This Side of Paradise’ does get very repetitive at the end and is a huge ear worm. I catch myself singing it all the time. They kept the Japanese soundtrack to my knowledge, but it’s just okay. Also, I really do miss the Pokemon theme songs as the openers.
Voice Acting: Everyone’s on par with the TV series, and despite Rebecca Honig’s dog whistle of a voice, she didn’t get many lines with which to annoy me. Lisa Ortiz was using her much more reserved voice, which is definitely a step up from her more frequently heard raspy screech.
By the way, Tory is voiced by Tara Jayne, who does a lot of ‘young boy’ voices for 4Kids, most frequently in Pokemon but most recognizably as Mokuba in Yu-Gi-Oh. She is doing absolutely nothing here to change her voice from her typical one, leaving Tory with even less identity. However, the main problem I have is that Tara Jayne also voices another prominent movie character…Sam. And they sound exactly alike. Distractedly so.
Bottom Line: Unlike the other Pokemon movies, I really cannot see myself ever going back and watching this movie again. The main plot leaves a lot of unanswered questions, what plot is there is pretty weak, the thing with Rayquaza really seemed forced during the second half and is poorly resolved. The side plot is not worthy of reaching ‘side plot turned main plot’ status for the movies, and it has nothing to do with the Deoxys plot. It’s an average Pokemon episode plot stretched out to fit a movie.
There’s even more filler with the Battle Tower, even if that is a nice change of pace from our normal non-battling movie plots. The tower itself is nicely designed and looks like a lot of fun, but this is also a plot line that just kinda stops without resolution.
Tory is not an interesting movie character or even an interesting character period, but the side characters were another welcome change to the typical movie formula, and they did a lot to pick up the slack. They got personalities, names, Pokemon, and things to do, and I really respect this movie for finally getting that right – at least with everyone but the twins.
Team Rocket was useless and barely there the whole movie. Brock, May and Max didn’t get much to do, but they didn’t seem like they were absent the whole time, so that’s something.
All in all, it’s not incredibly stupid or bad like some of the Pokemon movies. It’s just very much broken and average at best. I feel like this movie didn’t really know what it wanted to be so it tried to be a few different things (human focused, Legendary focused, and battle/Pokemon/leisure focused) and couldn’t get any of them to be much good. I don’t dislike Deoxys as much as I did going in, but I still don’t care for it much. I can be thankful they didn’t make either Deoxys or Rayquaza talk, though.
The most entertaining parts of this movie are the amusing Munchlax and whatever this movie has against hot dog carts. I really did laugh out loud just at the fact that the hot dog cart was being trashed this whole movie.
I completely understand if people enjoy this movie for their own reasons, and I didn’t feel like I lost anything going in, but I also feel like I gained anything either. In a lot of respects, that’s worse than it being ridiculously bad. At least ridiculously bad movies with nonsense plots are usually fun to watch.
This is just bland. It borders on boring. The fact that the big climax of the movie is something that shows up as a threat in the last ten minutes of the film and has little to nothing to do with the Legendaries or anything plot related, and the fact that it’s brought down by a passport of all things, with an amputated battle with Rayquaza and Deoxys, is underwhelming to say the least. I didn’t find much enjoyment in it at all. I had to make my own fun in this review. I fully understand anyone liking this movie, but, personally, I can’t find much to recommend here.
Seeing as how this is supposedly a very loyal dub according to Dogasu, I can’t imagine the Japanese version is any better or worse.
Recommended Audience: Deoxys does get its arm blown off and hit by a Hyper Beam so powerful that he essentially dies, but neither involves blood (just particles of light) and Deoxys is eventually regenerated and brought back to life. Outside of that, really nothing. 6+
Final note: No idea what destiny involves Deoxys. *shrug* They should’ve called it Deoxys: Friendship is Magic.
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