A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Pokemon: Zoroark - Master of Illusions is a full-length Pokemon feature that includes all the usual Pokemon stuff: capturing and collecting Pokemon, plus battling and violence. However, this movie is both more elaborate and more violent than the usual Pokemon fare. Besides fighting and explosions, there are vicious attacks and cries of fury, terror, anguish, and pain that can be shocking. Parents might be concerned with the consumer aspect of the Pokemon franchise, which encourages kids to collect cards and toys. Expect some skimpy skirts on female characters and a character who declares his love for every cute girl. Parents might appreciate the quick and subtle -- but positive -- messages about the environment, bullying, and fighting.
What's the story?
Everyone is excited about the Pokemon Baccer World Cup in Crown City. Ash, Dawn, and Brock are on their way there, with Pikachu and the other Pokemon in tow. Unexpectedly, they meet a Pokemon they've never seen before, a shape-shifter called Zorua that can speak via telepathy and is looking for "Mema." Meanwhile, three legendary Pokemon begin rampaging through Crown City, requiring a complete evacuation. Refusing to comply, Ash and company instead discover a sinister mystery. What is the connection between Zorua and the rampaging Pokemon? Why has Celebi, the guardian of the forest, suddenly returned after 20 years? And what does it all have to do with Kodai, the businessman that controls all the media in Crown City?
Is it any good?
Younger viewers are liable to get lost in the movie's labyrinthine plot but will probably enjoy it moment-by-moment; parents may find it tolerable as well.
The Pokemon movies aren't usually about quality of animation or artistry; they're produced quickly and in a rather slapdash manner to fulfill the demand of a legion of fans and collectors. Happily, the feature film POKEMON: ZOROARK - MASTER OF ILLUSIONS is a cut above the rest, using gorgeous computer-rendered backdrops, as well as some surprisingly majestic and lovely moments. Unfortunately, it's also a bit more violent than we usually get from this series. It's also very complex, with a dozen human and Pokemon characters to remember, as well as a 20-year timeline, time travel, predictions of the future, illusions, and more. Despite the extra effort that the filmmakers put into the movie's look and feel, their storytelling skills are a bit lax.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the movie's violence. Why did the filmmakers feel it was necessary? Does it make the movie more thrilling or less appealing?
Did watching this movie make you want to buy more Pokemon toys, games, or cards? Why?
- What is the movie's message about the environment? Why do movies like this use political or cultural issues in their plot?
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.