Pixar Animation studios have given Disney and us some amazing films over the years, from Toy Story to Wall-E. The films are loved by cinema-goers around the world and most will have a favourite, for us it was their 2003 film, Finding Nemo.
When we heard a sequel, Finding Dory, was on the way, we had to contain our excitement, as whilst Toy Story 2 was as good as the original, Monsters University didn’t really wow as much as Monsters, Inc. We should mention Cars 2, as whilst we found it a fun sequel, it like its predecessor, we would have to call it amongst the weakest of the Pixar movies.
Pixar had a return to form with their last 2 outings; Inside Out and we also enjoyed The Good Dinosaur, even if that one did seem very familiar to other animated dino movies.
We were also disappointed to read that Finding Dory would not bring back the Tank Gang or our personal favourites of the original. Bruce, Chum and Anchor, the non-fish eating, dolphin-hating sharks. Yet having rewatched the original recently, we were surprised how little screen time the sharks had!
So was it worth our time to find Dory? Absolutely!! Pixar have made a great new adventure and on the way given us some more unforgettable characters.
The film begins with Dory as an adorable child fish born to parents Jenny (Diane Keaton) and Charlie (Eugene Levy)
We see Dory’s parents teach her about shells and how to be safe and then how they deal with the fact that their daughter has short term memory loss. When Dory sees her parents upset, she tries to find them a special shell, which sees her being sucked out into the ocean, as we now learn that Dory has been born within the marine life institute conversation park.
Heartbreaking scenes follow as we see Dory have to come to terms that she is on her own and may never see her parents again and then of course forget it all, we see her age to the Dory know and love (voiced again by Ellen DeGeneres).
This sequence only gets interrupted when a fast speedboat shoots across the water. The very same one Marlin (Albert Brooks) is desperately trying to catch, in order to rescue his captured son Nemo (now voiced by Hayden Rolence)
Once we see the moment when Dory and Marlin bump into each other, to start the events of the original film. We leap forward 1 year later were Dory appears to be having memories of something important.
Life goes on for the 3 friends, and when we see Nemo head off to Mr. Ray’s (Bob Peterson) school for the young fish, Dory remembers her parents and is now desperate to get back to the Marine Life Institute to be reunited.
Marlin and Nemo can never forget how Dory helped bring them together, so of course agree to help her. To get to the Marine Life Institute they need the help of an old friend in Crush, the sea turtle (again voiced by the films co-director Andrew Stanton)
They find themselves outside the Marine Life Institute (they find out from the friendly voice of Sigourney Weaver) but whilst planning how to get in, Dory is captured. So its down to Marlin and Nemo to now find Dory.
The film then brings us a whole array of new loveable characters, Dory meets Bailey (Ty Burrell) a Beluga Whale and Destiny (Kaitlin Olson) a loveable short sighted whale shark. We learn that Destiny was friends with Dory previously and its this friendship that we learn is why Dory can speak whale.
Dory also meets Hank (Ed O’Neill) a 7 armed octopus, who agrees to help Dory find her parents, in exchange for her tag, which he believes will get him to a safer environment, away from being poked and touched by children.
Nemo and Marlin also meet some friends, in particular the 3 scene stealing Sea Lions. As Fluke and Rudder, we have a reunion of TV’s The Wire cast Idris Elba & Dominic West, who like the sharks in the original, don’t seem bothered about eating fish but do seem to bully Gerald (Torbin Bullock) refusing to let him sit on their rock.
Gerald is a superb character, and he was clearly our favourite and it does appear the internet love him too (Source MTV http://www.mtv.com/news/2900563/finding-dory-gerald-sea-lion-memes/)
Fluke and Rudder get Marlin and Nemo into the institute with the help of Becky, who oddly, like Gerald, does seem to be an outsider, and we’ll leave it with you to find out if Dory gets a happy ending =)
Is Finding Dory a sequel that betters the original, I would say it is on a par with it. The film certainly has issues,it feels confined with the Institute setting whereas the original had all the ocean.
It seems a lot of people do not feel that the characters of Becky and Gerald are portrayed as being different is a bad thing, hard to believe when we know that Nemo and Hank both inspire with their own disabilities.
I do accept that Fluke and Rudder seem to bully Gerald but stay right until the after credits and you will see Gerald get the last laugh and see what happened to the Tank gang from the original.
But at no point does this feel like a poor cash grab sequel, it has a charming story with fantastic characters.
The film should also be applauded for raising issues of creatures grown in captivity, this storyline was brought in when Pixar saw the amazing documentary Blackfish.
We do hope this ends the franchise though as the film does have a natural ending and it would be silly if someone else got lost.
Have you seen Finding Dory? What is your favourite Pixar film? We would love to hear from you here at Barking Mad About Films
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