Pokémon: The First Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back, commonly referred to as Pokémon: The First Movie, is a 1998 Japanese anime film directed by Kunihiko Yuyama, the chief director of the Pokémon television series. It is the first theatrical release in the Pokémon franchise. It was released in Japan on July 18, 1998. The English-language adaptation, produced by 4Kids Entertainment and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, was released in North America on November 10, 1999.
The film primarily consists of three segments: Pikachu’s Vacation, a 21-minute feature focusing on the series mascot Pikachu; Origin of Mewtwo, a 10-minute featurette that functions as a prologue to the main feature; and Mewtwo Strikes Back, the main 75 minute film feature. The featurette was added on for later releases and eventually dubbed as a special feature in the U.S. release of the TV special (that was released as a direct-to-video follow-up film sequel in the U.S.) Pokémon: Mewtwo Returns as The Uncut Story of Mewtwo’s Origin.
Pikachu’s Vacation is adorable. It is about Pikechu, and the rest od Ash, Brock and Misty’s Pokemon having a day to themselves without the humans around. As Pokemon cannot say anything other then their own name the majority of the story is told by their behaviors and personality. The only real issue I had with Pikachu’s Vacation was the transistions between sceens where random Pokemon would march across the screen. It it had been like once or twice it would have been fine, but it was every few minutes and got annoying quite fast.
The main feature, Mewtwo Strikes Back, is pretty decent. The story is well planed and told. It is a bit boring at times as the main characters; Ash, Brock and Misty; tent to take a backseat while as the main battle is mainly good Pokemon vs evil clone Pokemon. While interesting, their adventure is not much more then a side quest. With numerious more movies for me to watch I have high expectations for the others.