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:: Pokemon Heroes

The Pokemon phenomenon was very strong in the late 1990s when the first film was released. Things started to wane slightly upon the follow-up. The Pokemon stories are hitting the video/DVD market quicker than expected.
Pokemon Heroes isn’t too bad a cartoon, but there isn’t a great amount of quality in the animation.

This film takes place in the island city of Alto Mare, which is based on the design of Venice. This city has two Pokémon named Latios and Latias who watch over it. Ash Ketchum, Pikachu and his friends are in town for a Pokémon race, which Ash ends up losing thanks to some interference by Latios and Latias. There are also two villains, Annie and Oakley, who are after Latios so he can lead them to a treasure buried in the city. When Latios is kidnapped, Ash and company must join forces with Latias to rescue him.

There are some pieces to this movie that might be difficult to understand or digest. You probably need to think like a child. It was at least a story and didn’t just lead-up to a Pokémon grudge match in an arena. The animation is completed in the angular Anime style.

So, if your child is really into Pokémon, you could do a lot worse

Specifications: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound. Fullscreen (1.33:1). French Language Track and Subtitles.

DVD Extras

There’s a small amount of special features on this disk. The most prominent one, which is advertised on the cover box, is a never-before-seen 20-minute Pokémon short called “Camp Pikachu.” This is the Pokémon most teenagers might be familiar with - a nonsensical parade of beeping, cooing creatures

The other features include clips of a location scout in Venice for the director and animators to get a feel for a city of canals. There are also biographies of the different Pokémon featured prominently in the movie, as well as a trivia game based on the film. The most interesting feature is several scenes and shots that reveal the animation stages - from sketches, through the computer enhancements, to the final renderings.

The DVD comes with Latios and Latias trading cards along with an exclusive poster featuring 38 Pokémon characters.