No, it isn't the 2000th movie.
Pokémon: The Movie 2000: The Power of One
Lest these Titans wreak destruction upon the world in which they clash.
Though the Water's Great Guardian shall arise to quell the fighting,
Alone its Song will fail. Thus the Earth shall turn to Ash.
—The opening lines of the prophecy, Pokémon: The Movie 2000
, also known as Pocket Monsters Revelation - Lugia
in Japan, is the second Pokémon
film. Unlike Pokemon The First Movie
, this is the first one not to suffer from horrible amounts of Bowdlerization
A collector, Lawrence III (Jirarudan in the original Japanese version), plans to capture the three Legendary Birds—Moltres, Zapdos, and Articuno—in order to collect his prize, the Beast of the Sea. The initial capture of Moltres begins to throw the balance of nature out of order as the remaining birds begin vying to expand their power, just as legend had foretold.
Said legend has become the center of an annual celebration on Shamouti Island, where Ash, Misty, and Tracey are roped into taking part in the climactic ritual journey to obtain the three treasures associated with each of the three elements. The paths of Lawrence and Ash intersect and soon a great battle erupts to prevent one man's obsession from throwing the planet into chaos.
This movie provides examples of:
- Affably Evil: Lawrence is impeccably polite while causing this movie's conflict.
- All There in the Manual: The villain of the film is never referred to by any sort of name in the dub, and so the name Lawrence III came from the English novelization of the movie. The closed captions, however, call him Gelarden.
- It's the same in Japanese. His name is never said and comes from the film's program book and soundtrack.
- According to a production sketch, he's also a scientific genius. This is never brought up in the movie, although the common assumption is that he designed the capture devices he uses. Which WOULD go along with another tidbit from the production line—he aided in the design of his airship.
- Lawrence is the only movie antagonist to have an image song, and in it we learn that his entire life revolves around serving his collection. He thinks highly of himself, but even higher of it. It also establishes his utter detachment from the world outside his ship.
- Also the Shamouti chief is only named in the closed captions—Tobias. He has no Japanese name.
- Ambiguous Disorder: Lawrence III/Jirarudan: He's an art collector of a ridiculously high magnitude who seems to have learned social skills entirely by rote, has a narrow and fixed attention span, wears a long coat with an undershirt to tropical islands in the middle of summer, has almost no change in facial expression or vocal intonation despite living by his passions, seems to have difficulty recognizing cues from others, and takes everything, including the legend and Misty screaming at him, only by the words presented without considering tone or alternate meaning.
- Anti-Villain: Lawrence III/Jirarudan, Type I. He's selfish and ego-maniacal, but also very polite and dignified.
- Arc Words: "Disturb not the harmony of fire, ice and lightning..."
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: In the English dub and subsequent dubs based on it.
Jessie: (when the legendary birds are fighting) I'd hate to get burned by their fire.
James: I'd hate to get zapped by their lightning.
- Big Bad: Lawrence III kicks off the plot by capturing Moltres.
- Big Damn Heroes:
- Lugia enters to save the cast from the three birds
- Team Rocket! Yes, they "protect the world from devastation" by helping Ash.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall:
- Jessie and James do it when they first confront Ash:
Jessie: Prepare for more trouble, than you've ever seen!
James: Make it double, we're on the big screen!
Ash: ...I'll have to catch this on video.
- Also occurs at the end of the movie with Team Rocket and Slowking. Team Rocket is upset that nobody saw how good they were in helping Ash, and Slowking directs their attention to the audience, starting the "That's good/That's bad" gag below. Fans weren't happy about this, and DVD commentary explains that 4Kids didn't know how else to handle the scene.
- Captain Oblivious: Lawrence III (Jirarudan), so very much. The entire reason he wreaked so much havoc was due to him being clueless he was doing anything wrong in the first place. The film's writer even stated on a blog that it's total egomania, not a desire to do evil, that drives his actions.
- The Chosen One: Mentioned by the prophecy. The old guy (Tobias) says "It's just for the tourists" and they have a new one every festival but then it turns out that Ash really is the one to fulfil the prophecy.
- The Chessmaster: Lawrence uses Chess Motifs to illustrate The Plan for catching Lugia.
- The Collector: Lawrence III (Jirarudan), who aims to collect the three legendary birds and Lugia.
- Continuity Nod: One of the opening themes in the Johto saga references the relationship established here between Lugia and the three Birds, even drawing a parallel with Ho-oh and the three Beasts. Lugia's connection to the birds was again alluded to in Pokémon X and Y, where Articuno, Zapdos and Moltres can be met, battled and caught in a place named Sea Spirit's Den.
- Cosmic Keystone: Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres serve this function to Lugia, though the orbs of fire, ice, and lightning also qualify.
- Cool Ship: Lawrence III's is huge and powerful enough to trap legendary birds.
- Deconstruction: Similar to the previous film, the movie breaks down one of Pokémon's core tenets. This time, it's "Gotta Catch Them All"; and boy, does he gotta.
- Dub-Induced Plot Hole: Sort of. Professor Oak had an extra line theorizing that lightning striking volcanic seawater began a chemical reaction that created life on Earth. And in the scene on Lawrence's ship, Tracey had a line that went something like this:
Electricity plus fire plus water...electricity separates water into hydrogen and oxygen, which is then recombined using fire which means - EVERYBODY GET DOWN
- Early-Bird Cameo: Lugia and Slowking appear here before the release of the Pokémon Gold and Silver video games. Pikachu's Rescue Adventure had appearances by Elekid, Hoothoot, Ledyba, and Bellossom as well.
- Enemy Mine: The Team Rocket trio assists Ash when he attempts to grab Articuno's sphere, claiming that if the world were to come to an end, there'd be "no one left to steal from". However, it becomes clear that they've got more noble motives when they sacrifice themselves to help Lugia and Ash escape later, because it also makes it really hard to steal if you're dead. Luckily, though, the three survive the plunge.
- Exact Words: "Thus, the world will turn to Ash." This line from the prophecy is not referring to The End of the World as We Know It, but rather, name-drops the one who would save the world.
- Feelies: The VHS comes with the Ancient Mew Pokémon card. It's a Junk Rare though.
- Fire, Ice, Lightning: The three legendary birds.
- Funny Background Event: Brock's cameo has him running around in a frenzy while Professor Ivy talks on the phone with Professor Oak. Also, the Krabbys comment listed below.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: Towards the beginning, during the festival on Shamouti island, the movie cuts to a dining hall and we hear "...and she said, 'No, but I have Krabbys!'"
- Gilded Cage: The Hikoukyuu is this for Jirarudan, although he enjoys it and clearly doesn't see it as a prison.
- Gondor Calls for Aid: Subverted; according to Lugia, all of the Pokémon in the world show up in the climax, but they don't actually do anything to help in the battle. Of course, few Johto and no Hoenn-onwards Pokémon appear. Mainly because Hoenn and the later regions didn't exist yet when the movie was made.
- Green Aesop: A selfish collector disregards the balance of nature, and as a result causes some severe climate change.
- Green-Eyed Monster: Misty, of course, denies every aspect of it, but she still gets very jealous of all the attention Melody provides Ash.
- Heroic Sacrifice: The Team Rocket trio let go of Lugia to lighten his load and fly faster. They get better.
- He Is Not My Boyfriend: Misty about Ash throughout the movie. At one point Jessie and James about each other.
- Hope Spot: Lugia awakens, ready to fight the Legendary Birds and set things right! ... and they overpower him, making the global storm rage even further out of control.
- It's Always Mardi Gras in New Orleans: Our heroes arrive at Shamouti Island on the night before their annal festival.
- List Song: "Polkamon" in the end credits.
- Loser Has Your Back: Team Rocket while mostly Enemy Mine cover this trope as well with their assistance since it's usually Ash and Co. that beat them throughout the entire series.
- Lost in Translation:
- The Swedish dub, which is a translation of the English dub, has the prophecy say that the world will become aska, which means "ash." Misty figures out that Ash's the one the prophecy is talking about, since aska means "Ash" in English. But since the Swedish language makes it impossible to keep the double-entendre where "turn to" can mean "become" as well as "turn for help to," Misty's reasoning feels like Insane Troll Logic. The prophecy mentions a word that means "ash" in another language, so therefore Mr. Ketchum is supposed to save the world? That's reaching at straws.
- This translation is also used in the Norwegian dub.
- Love Triangle: Downplayed. Ash is too dense to notice Misty's feelings for him and barely acknowledges Melody's flirtatious behavior. This doesn't stop the two girls from having a catty rivalry.
- Magic Music: Melody's ocarina can heal Lugia's injuries and is the final key to restoring the world's balance.
- Meaningful Name: Melody plays music. Pointed out very early on, by Ash.
- Męlée ŕ Trois: Articuno vs Zapdos vs Moltres, with Lugia trying to be the Conflict Killer, and Lawrence III awaiting his chance to capture the latter.
- Merchandise-Driven: Pretty egregiously, even for this franchise; the card that started Lawrence on his obsession is the same one that was given away with tickets for the film.
- Mike Nelson, Destroyer of Worlds: Lawrence III/Jirarudan isn't trying to destroy the world and in fact he's shocked when such a thing starts. He's just "collecting them all".
- Misfit Mobilization Moment: All of Ash's Pokémon on-hand coming out to encourage him in fulfilling his role as The Chosen One. Yes, even Charizard. At the time this Movie aired in Japan, Charizard had already began to obey Ash.
- Mon: Of course. The focus of the plot is a guy collecting Olympus Mons.
- Mundane Made Awesome: Normally, fetching the orbs of fire, ice and lightning wouldn't really be a big deal. Ash would go fetch them, come back, the Shamouti Islanders throw a party and play some music... but what with the legendary birds fighting, it's much more important, as is the song Melody's meant to play.
- Musical Theme Naming: The sisters Carol and Melody.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Ash and co release Moltres and Zapdos from the gallery, and prevent Lawrence III from pursuing Articuno. But the legend never said that the birds had to be free, only in balance. If Articuno had been captured, the balance would have been restored.
- Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: Shamouti seems to be the most multicultural island ever. They wear Aztec-like outfits, dance around a Native American totem pole, play Caribbean music, have a parade involving a Gyarados styled like a Chinese dragon, and hang out in Greek temples.
- Obliviously Evil: Lawrence, though this is pretty much his own fault. In true oblivious villain fashion, he sees the destruction happening around him...and is blissfully unaware that he caused it to begin with.
- On Second Thought: In the opening, Ash retracts his decision to let two of his Pokémon out for fresh air: Charizard (out of control) and Snorlax (he nearly capsizes the party's boat).
- Overly Long Gag: In the dub, Team Rocket's dialogue during the ending, contemplating on whether they decide to permanently be good guys or not. Topped by James saying "That's good/bad" each and every time...
- Pragmatic Villainy: Team Rocket would be out of a job if the world gets destroyed, so they give Ash a lift to the last orb's location.
- Prophecy Twist: Only present in the dubbed English version: through a clever bit of wordplay, the line "thus the earth shall turn to ash" in the legend was originally thought to reference the world's destruction; however, the heroes later realize the legend is talking about Ash. Ash then wished he had the name "Bob".
- Purple Eyes: Lawrence III has somewhat striking violet eyes and has a kingly bearing around him. He certainly sees himself as a king in his chess match with Lugia (which is ironic because the very first line of his image song is "I am nobody's king").
- Screw Destiny: The Japanese version didn't specify that "Ash" was in the prophecy. He decided to do it anyway.
- Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: Lawrence III accidentally set the events of the prophecy in motion by trying to capture the three legendary birds because he believed that he was The Chosen One meant to "bring together all three" and "tame the Beast of the Sea."
- She Cleans Up Nicely: Melody first appeared wearing modern clothes, but, at the night of the festival she's garbed in festival clothes. Ash's reaction clearly irritated Misty on the spot since this is one of few times Ash truly seemed to demonstrate attraction.
- Ship Tease:
- Many a Pokéshipper (Ash/Misty) cite this movie as their favorite.
- Upon hearing Misty and Melody arguing about Ash:
Jessie: Listen to me, kid: when you get involved with the opposite sex, you're only asking for trouble!
James: Yes, and that's the kind of trouble...I stay out of.
Meowth: Youse two don't need the opposite sex cause youse got each otta. *laughs like a maniac*
- Oddly (considering that the Team Rocket trio's lines get re-written most of the time), these lines are fairly similar to the Japanese dialogue, with Meowth originally saying "Whatever you say. You guys get love-love all the time!"
- Shout-Out: The concept of misaligning three divine beings (or in this particular case, legendary Pokémon) and it causing a major calamity as a result is extremely similar to Final Fantasy VI, the two major differences are that the main villain in that game, unlike here, is fully aware that his actions would cause the world to be ravaged, and yet did it anyways simply because he could, and that unlike in the game, here the destruction of the world was averted, although just barely.
- Soft Water: When Team Rocket lets go of Lugia, they fall through a hole in the ice. They're stunned momentarily, but swim right back to the surface. Not that this is unusual for them, though.
- Spell My Name with an "S": Lawrence III's Japanese name has been spelled as Jirarudan (the preferred Romanization amongst his fans), Gelardan, Girardian, Gelarden (what the closed captioning on the English dub calls him), and Geraldine. Add into it that there's no official Romanization of his Japanese name, and that phonetically the J sound is closest although the name is (most likely) based off Rene Girard (which is pronounced as a J but such a thing is difficult to get across in the Roman alphabet).
- The Stoic: Lawrence has about four facial expressions in the entire movie. Most of them are variations on "smug". Even at the end when he's standing in the ruins of his vaporized collection, he expresses nothing. It's clear that he feels things, and he's not trying to hide his emotions. They just don't manifest.
- Take That: Lawrence III is basically a real world obsessive collector-type fan transplanted into the fictional world and he's the antagonist.
- There Is No Kill Like Overkill: In order to get Moltres' attention, Lawrence III bombs its home island with ice.
- Wave Motion Gun: Lugia's Aeroblast levels what's left of Lawrence III's ship and knocks the Legendary Birds out of the sky without even hitting them.
- Why We Can't Have Nice Things: Lawrence III's ship has little force fields around all of his treasures to keep them from being broken. Not that it helped, considering that it it couldn't protect against Aeroblast.