Synopsis: The friendly-but-forgetful blue tang fish reunites with her loved ones, and everyone learns a few things about the real meaning of family along the way.
There are some movies you think to yourself you want to see so much of the world created by a movie that you badly want a sequel but then you realize how are they possibly going to do that? Finding Nemo was one of those cases, I loved Finding Nemo along with pretty much the rest of the world. It was because of that movie that I know what a Clown Fish and a Blue Tang fish are! However I always wondered how they’re ever going to make another one, Nemo can’t get lost again. Luckily Andrew Stanton and the rest of the genius minds over at Disney/Pixar figured it out! Finding Dory manages to not only create a highly fun, heartfelt and exciting story but they also manage to expand on the characters and their wonderful relationships with each other along with some awesome new additions!
As with any Pixar movie the story is where it all starts and they did not disappoint! You can tell they put a great deal of thought and care into it. The 13 year wait was well worth it! It’s great that the focus is now on one the most interesting and fun character from Finding Nemo, Dory. Exploring her past and going on an adventure to find her family at the Marine Life Institute in California makes for some great fun, hilarious moments as well as some of your classic Pixar tear-jerking moments. One aspect of this movie that was incredibly well done is how it would continuously build up the stakes and tension. Every time you think there is going to be some sort of resolution or reprieve you get punched in the gut by coming up just short. This keeps you constantly engaged and on the edge of your seat all the way up till the climax at the end of the movie.
Another standout of this movie are the new characters introduced and the amazing talent they got to voice them all. All the new characters from Destiny the whale shark to Dory’s parents Jenny and Charlie all serve an important role in progressing the movie but most of all they are very lovable and fun. My favorite is definitely Hank the Octopus played perfectly by Ed O’Neil. I love how well they developed Hank’s reluctant friendship with Dory so well it makes both characters incredibly endearing. This movie also has a great message about never giving up in difficult situations and pushing on to find different ways to deal with adversity.
Let’s talk about the animation because it is just gorgeous! I can’t believe what I’m seeing at some points. The underwater environment is absolutely perfect for showing off this animation technology. There are particular shots where you see the fish floating just above the water level and the way the water moves and glistens look insanely realistic not to mention the detail paid to each of the sea animals. In particular Hank, he’s an octopus so getting his fluid movement realistic was a feat in and of itself but he has this camouflage ability to blend into the background as he moves around. I can't imaging how much work must have gone in to animate him. I can’t forget the musical score by Thomas Newman adds greatly to the experience accenting exciting moments and adding emotional weight to the dramatic moments that draws you in.
I'm very happy to say that this is not a case of a company attempting an easy cash grab by using an old successful property. This was created with a great deal of thought and love! Finding Dory was quite the achievement technically as well as narratively with stunning animation, smart funny humor, and a story full of heart you're going to have a wonderful time watching this movie.
Fun Fact: Make sure to stay for the credits because there is a fun post credit scene!