DETECTIVE PIKACHU AND THE FORMULAS OF THE BLOCKBUSTER

DETECTIVE PIKACHU
DETECTIVE PIKACHU

Detective Pikachu is surely one of the most anticipated phenomena for mainstream cinema and blockbuster. It is the opportunity that the long videogame franchise Pokémon has to establish a cinematic lethargy that allows it to continue expanding its universe beyond the Nintendo consoles. An opportunity that, in our opinion, has not wasted at all, but it has taken little care. Not only because, grosso modo, Rob Letterman's film is a fairly adequate adaptation of the video game to which he refers his name released in 2016 for Nintendo 3DS and risked little, but because it introduces in his narrative some of the formulas that other blockbusters like Avatar (2009, James Cameron) or The Avengers (2012, Joss Whedon) - to name a few - used in his script and were the result of a box office hit. Formulas that, on the other hand, other feature films have tried to trace to procure a good collection.

Detective Pikachu is no less and, despite the fact that his goal is to represent the little monsters that have accompanied us since they were small on the screen and get excited, he seeks to put the gloves on those points that could serve as a connection to attract a larger audience to his visual spectacle. To convince those potential new followers that, here, they will also find typical elements such as uncontrolled action, emotional ties with fantastic beings or cities with futuristic cyberpunk appearance full of secrets to discover. Let's go with some points.

From the beginning of the film, it is clear that a part of humans see the Pokémon as beings to be studied, analyzed and with whom we can experiment for our benefit in order to reach a kind of evolution that leads to humans to a higher plane. Others, of course, consider that they are like pets and that they can live with them without any problem. Help each other to build a better community - the false feeling that makes Ryme City born. Something similar to what it posed Who cheated Roger Rabbit? (1988, Robert Zemeckis) with animation. But as Zemeckis took pains to give shape to some characters with defined motivations, Detective Pikachu, having the luck to have a story behind - is, as we said, an adaptation almost traced to the 2016 videogame - in which to be able to lean to avoid having to focus so much on building a solid story, he easily forgets not to fully profile that human protagonist, Tim, and move on to CGI-based showmanship by trusting that the public already knows the Pokémon universe.

In fact, one of the strongest points of the Letterman movie is that contrast between the Pikachu of the original movies and video games and Ryan Reynolds' interpretation of it. But for this it would take a tad of context and previous knowledge about its mythology.

On the other hand, and returning to the example of Avatar, Detective Pikachu starts from a similar starting point: a character goes to a new world - we can consider Ryme City as a place similar to Pandora in Avatar, for the mixture of species and that it is tried to do uniting to both under a same roof, each one with its respective motivations - due to the death of one of its relatives. Once there he discovers that he is the only one who can make contact with the opposite species -in Avatar, Sully is the only one accepted in the Na'vi, and in Detective Pikachu, Tim is the only one who can understand what his Pokémon tells him- and that encourages him to be more interested in that world / place. While the relations between the races are configured, a thorough investigation must be solved. In Avatar, it is about fixing a political agreement in time to avoid a war, and in Detective Pikachu discover the reason for the death of Tim's father.

But there is more, the Letterman film establishes an intimate relationship with nature and with the beings that inhabit it, with the Pokémon. In that desperate attempt to cure, or revive, Pikachu, the director points directly to what James Cameron represented: in connecting the Pokémon in a global system in which only they can enter to help each other. As a loop or connection point that keeps them connected to the same network. Subsequently, of course, nothing develops in that area and everything is drawn to the action for the outcome. A blockbuster without buildings being destroyed and without the streets of the city where the action is developed is not at the edge of the apocalypse, it is not the same.

In that third act is when Detective Pikachu watches the Avengers. When a small group of "heroes" has to deal with a madman who wants to gain global control for his own benefit. In fact, the method with which the conflict develops is the most similar: while in an office exploits a combat that can end the battle, in general, throughout the city is spreading chaos at the same time, in this case, one of the protagonists is having to stop the chaos that can end with the pre-established system that the protagonists of the film want to save.

The truth is that to be a product that is full of adorable creatures that we love above anything, the action that Letterman represents in the end is worthy of any shooting film of the eighties: there are a lot of explosions and fights melee - the sequence that represents Pokémon Tournament DX in that Charizard vs Pikachu is tremendous - worthy of panem et circenses. But, of course, the director comes from filming Pesadillas (2015), where there was also a big explosion of action in his final stretch, and it is almost inevitable that he will drag that style to his new project.

Leaving a little aside, or little care, the black film code that seems to adopt Detective Pikachu in its first section - the most interesting part of the film, without a doubt But that this does not fool you, Detective Pikachu is an absolute party for the fans that even gathering the most typical and topical ingredients of the contemporary blockbuster -basándonos, us, in two examples that have marked that type of cinema-. Now we only have to wait for sequels to confirm that jump to the mainstream film that Pokémon is looking for.

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