Welcome to Astral Animations, where we'll examine the imports of Japanese animation currently available in the United States.
This review does not represent the opinions of the general public. It reflects my personal thoughts and opinions on the movie.
That said, on to the review!
Something's wrong with the world's weather, and all the Pokemon are reacting to it. For some it's more noticeable than others--flocks of Pidgey and Spearow flying overhead, mass migrations of Tauros and Diglett along the ground--but for others, nary a sign of concern registers. And for Ash Ketchum, sailing through the Orange Archipelago with his friends Misty and Tracey, the freak storm that drives them to Shamouti Island is just that: a freak storm. Little do any of them know, however, that the real truth is that much stranger...and worse! Because an ancient prophesy has foretold the coming of a Chosen One who will set things right, and the things that have been going wrong are the very things that the prophecy has seen the Chosen One resolving!
Something has upset the balance between the elements of Fire, Ice, and Lightning, and the islands near Shamouti--Fire Island, Ice Island, and Lightning Island--show signs of the truth. These islands, you see, are the homes of the three legendary bird Pokemon: Moltres, Articuno, and Zapdos, the three Titans of the Air. And with the balance disturbed, one element is rising above the others and the result is a change in some undersea current that seems to directly affect the world's weather patterns. But what has happened to the legendary birds?
The truth is terrible to behold. Someone is capturing the legendary birds, not to train them at all but to collect them. And that isn't even the real reason behind capturing them: it's to force a fourth Pokemon out of hiding. And that isn't the worst of it. The goal of capturing the last Pokemon isn't to train it either, but simply to collect it. And that isn't the worst yet either. That Pokemon is the only one that can possibly stop the three legendary birds from battling one another and restore the balance to nature! Can Ash and his friends put a stop to the collector's plans or will the world end with the capture of Lugia, the great Guardian of Water and the fourth Legendary Bird?
Given that Pokemon the Movie 2000 aired several months ago, I don't think I've given away anything about the plot that most people don't already know. And I don't think naming Lugia has been that big a give away, since Pokemon Gold and Silver have appeared on the shelves already. I'm not going to give away more of the explicit details, of course, but I will do what I can.
Pokemon the Movie 2000 seems to take place sometime before Ash received his third Orange League gym badge (i.e., Charizard still wasn't necessarily under control yet) though this might be a mistake, seeing as how Charizard did obey Ash several times in the movie (of course, that might have been because all the Pokemon wanted to help, so that would suggest that Charizard did, too). Ash does already have Snorlax, however, and of course has Pikachu, Squirtle, and Bulbasaur at his side. Tracey has Scyther, so this at least follows the "Tracey Bugs Out" episode in the series. And of course, Misty doesn't have Poliwag yet.
Well, as with Pokemon--The First Movie, we have Pokemon who can actually speak. In the first movie it was Meowth and Mewtwo who were the only Pokemon able to use human speech (albeit in Mewtwo's case it was telepathic instead). And I'm ignoring that strange Ghastly that haunted Maiden's Peak. In this movie, we get to see two more, and one doesn't seem to be doing it telepathically, although it is a Water-Psychic Pokemon: Slowking. Lugia, I'm assuming, speaks telepathically as well. And really, I'm still waiting for some of the other psychic Pokemon to learn to speak with their minds, if not their mouths.
There weren't any new Pokemon in the movie except for Lugia, although it was nice to see Moltres and Zapdos again and Articuno for the first time. However, the mini-movie, Pikachu's Rescue Adventure, had a whole lot of new Pokemon. Chief among them would probably be Elekid, who guides the other small Pokemon (i.e., excluding Scyther, Charizard, Snorlax, Lapras, Goldeen, and Staryu) through a strange hidden world. We also get to see Bellossom, a swarm of Ledyba, a Hoothoot, and a few others. There could have been more, but most had simple support roles: Pikachu and company again take center stage, with Togepi being--once again--a chief cause of some of their troubles: being included in a nest of five Exeggcute who need a sixth to be complete. And of course, Meowth shows up and gets into no small end of trouble!
Now I have just one question. Ignoring everything that the games have introduced, and everything that happened (but didn't happen) in Pokemon--The First Movie, here is the question. Where did the Moltres at the Indigo Plateau come from? If there is supposed to be only one Moltres, and it lives at Fire Island in the Orange Archipelago, then where did that other one come from?
If I were you, I'd opt for buying the DVD version of this movie. There aren't as many features to this movie as there were on the original, but you do get to see the trailers for this movie as well as Pokemon 3! Go for it, get the DVD this time!
You should be able to purchase Pokemon the Movie 2000 on videotape or DVD at any video store. Otherwise, you can contact Warner Brothers to find out how to order it.
Interested in buying this video? You can! Just follow the links to order the English dubbed VHS versions or the DVD version. You can also visit the Stellar Video Store for other titles.
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