Australian Council on Children and the Media

Pokémon the Movie: The Power of Us

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Not recommended under age 6, Parental guidance to age 10 due to animated violence.

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Pokémon the Movie: The Power of Us
  • a review of Pokémon the Movie: The Power of Us completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 3 December 2018.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 6 Not recommended for this age group due to animated violence.
Children aged 6-10 Parental guidance recommended due to animated violence.
Children over the age of 10 Ok for this age group.

About the movie

This section contains details about the movie, including its classification by the Australian Government Classification Board and the associated consumer advice lines.

Name of movie: Pokémon the Movie: The Power of Us
Classification: G
Consumer advice lines: Very mild themes and animated violence.
Length 113 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

Pokémon the Movie: The Power of Us is the 21st movie in the Pokémon movie series. Longstanding character Ash (voice of Sarah Natochenny) and his trusty Pokémon ‘Pikachu’ (voice of Ikue Otani)  are visiting Fula City, a futuristic wind-powered city with a dark and mysterious past. The wind that powers Fula City is sustained through a reverent relationship with a giant Pokémon, ‘Lugia’, who visits the city each year during the Wind Festival. However, the arrival of the notorious ‘Team Rocket’ in the midst of the festival starts a chain of events that threaten disastrous consequences. Ash and Pikachu join forces with a team of unlikely heroes, who work together to save the city, strengthened by the connection between humans and Pokémon (‘Pokémon Power!).

Themesinfo

Children and adolescents may react adversely at different ages to themes of crime, suicide, drug and alcohol dependence, death, serious illness, family breakdown, death or separation from a parent, animal distress or cruelty to animals, children as victims, natural disasters and racism. Occasionally reviews may also signal themes that some parents may simply wish to know about.

Team work; stealing and crime; natural disasters (fire); animal distress, and cruelty to animals.

Use of violenceinfo

Research shows that children are at risk of learning that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution when violence is glamourised, performed by an attractive hero, successful, has few real life consequences, is set in a comic context and / or is mostly perpetrated by male characters with female victims, or by one race against another.

Repeated exposure to violent content can reinforce the message that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution. Repeated exposure also increases the risks that children will become desensitised to the use of violence in real life or develop an exaggerated view about the prevalence and likelihood of violence in their own world.

There is some violence in this movie including:

  • There are many scenes of Pokémon battling each other, using their special powers to overcome each other. These include explosions, electric shocks, water blasting, laser beams etc. It is unclear whether they ever are harmed to the point of death but it sometimes implied. Otherwise the violence is without consequence.
  • Humans are at times threatened by violent Pokémon. For example, James (Team Rocket) is electrocuted by Pikachu.
  • The Pokémon are sometimes captured and tamed against their will by hunters.

Material that may scare or disturb children

Under fiveinfo

Children under five are most likely to be frightened by scary visual images, such as monsters, physical transformations.

In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children under the age of five, including the following:

  • A flashback to a tower being burnt to the ground, many people in distress, and many Pokémon dying.
  • A scene of a bushfire raging out of control.
  • Explosion of a bomb, which has a poisonous gas in it. Everyone in the city becomes poisoned by the gas which makes them paralysed and sleepy.
  • Several fast-paced action scenes.
  • Three boys in the street threaten a small girl by ordering their Pokémon to attack her. She is unharmed because Ash and Pikachu come to her rescue.
  • A small girl and a Pokémon are attack by a Pokémon hunter.
  • Although the Pokémon are mostly harmless in appearance, during battles they can look much scarier.
  • A girl is nearly squashed by a falling boulder and, in a separate scene, a collapsing tower. She is unharmed because a Pokémon comes to her rescue.

Aged five to eightinfo

Children aged five to eight will also be frightened by scary visual images and will also be disturbed by depictions of the death of a parent, a child abandoned or separated from parents, children or animals being hurt or threatened and / or natural disasters.

In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes and scary visual images, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children aged five to eight, including the following:

  • Children of this age may also find the above-mentioned scenes scary or disturbing.

Aged eight to thirteeninfo

Children aged eight to thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic threats and dangers, violence or threat of violence and / or stories in which children are hurt or threatened.

In addition to the above mentioned violent scenes, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children aged eight to thirteen, including the following:

  • Younger children in this age group may still find some of the above-mentioned scenes scary or disturbing.

Over thirteeninfo

Children over the age of thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic physical harm or threats, molestation or sexual assault and / or threats from aliens or the occult.

  • Children of this age are unlikely to be scared or disturbed by this film.

Product placement

Pokémon merchandise and media.

Sexual references

Although there are no sexual references in this film, there are some sexualised female characters in this movie, including:

  • The female characters Rina and Jessie wear minimal clothing, e.g. very short skirts, knee high stockings, exposed midriffs and make-up.

Nudity and sexual activity

None of concern.

Use of substances

None of concern.

Coarse language

None of concern.

In a nutshell

Pokémon the Movie: The Power of Us is a visually stimulating, fast-paced animated action film that will appeal to children as well as die-hard Pokémon fans. It has positive messages about respect for nature and the importance of working together as a team.

The main message from this movie is that working together is more powerful than acting alone. The relationship between humans and Pokémon could be seen as symbolic of our relationship to animals and the environment.

Values in this movie that parents may wish to reinforce with their children include:

  • Overcoming social anxiety.
  • Not judging people by their appearance.
  • Respect for Japanese spiritual animism or other similar spiritual beliefs from around the world.
  • Understanding about renewable energy.

 

This movie could also give parents the opportunity to discuss with their children attitudes and behaviours, and their real-life consequences, such as:

  • The impact of social anxiety.
  • The consequences of lying and the morality of lying.
  • Human impact on the natural environment.
  • Consequences of natural disasters.
  • Ageism.

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