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Somehow I've missed out on the Pokemon craze; the card trading, t-shirts and bed sheets, so this movie opened my eyes to a whole new world of animated characters. I can't say the same for the majority of moviegoers with whom I shared the theater.
Pokemon 3: The Movie "The Spell of the Unown" is the newest in a series of motion pictures featuring Pokemon trainers Ash Ketchum (voice of Veronica Taylor), and his pals Misty (voice of Rachael Lillis) and Brock (voice of Eric Stuart) who jump from one adventure to the next with their arsenal of Pokemon in tow.
As has apparently become the tradition, the pocket monster experience starts by enduring ...I mean enjoying, a twenty minute short starring Pikachu and his brother Pichu. After admonishing the Pokemon not to get into trouble while their trainers are away, the inevitable cartoon style violence ensues in this silly tale.
The real adventure begins by introducing the Unown, twenty-six cryptic forms that resemble "alphabet soup without the soup" according to Meowth (voice of Addie Blaustein). These powerful entities have the ability to read human thoughts and turn them into new realities. With the help of the Unown a young girl named Molly, who became orphaned when her father disappears while researching a new find of legendary Pokemon, is encased in a crystal-like fortress to protect her from the outside world. Meanwhile Entei, a ferocious-looking but gentle-hearted leonine beast, becomes the father figure she desires.
When the beast kidnaps Ash's mother, the young trainer and his friends get involved. Realizing there is a fine line between protection and prison, the threesome attempt to save Mom and bring Molly back to the real world.
Preaching about the importance of real friends, facing life's difficult challenges and believing in others may be lost on most underage viewers who seem more interested in the battle scenes between opposing Pokemon than the wise adages spouted by the cartoon characters. As for me, all those flying letters left me hungry for lunch.
Pokemon 3: The Movie is rated G:
Studio: )2001 Warner Bros.