Voices by Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks, Hayden Rolence, Ed O'Neill, Kaitlin Olson, Ty Burrell, Diane Keaton, Eugene Levy. Directed by Andrew Stanton.
13 years after Finding Nemo was released, its sequel Finding Dory has been released. For many of the animation movie aficionados, Finding Nemo was the movie that marked Pixar had dethroned all the other animation studios. Pixar had proved by then that it was a serious contender in animation industry through Toy Story 1, 2, A Bug’s Life and Monster Inc. But Finding Nemo brought us a movie experience like no other. We would have seen movies that happened on the water but it was the first time that almost a whole movie happened under water. The diverse and colourful ocean life amazed us, and made the movie one of the all time favourites for many. So, a sequel to that, having one of the most memorable characters from Finding Nemo as the lead, is ought to bring us some excitement.
Finding Dory is almost a repeat of Finding Nemo, plot wise. Instead of Nemo, it was Dory who strayed away from her home and parents. But it happened a long time ago, before ‘Finding Nemo’ timeline. Nemo inspires Dory to find her parents by journeying across the ocean, in spite of her short term memory problem. Does she accomplish the seemingly impossible goal? You ought to see it in the big screen.
Writer/Director Andrew Stanton has built a solid reputation through his work, having won Academy Awards twice for his animation movies. So having him at the driver’s seat for Finding Nemo’s sequel as well would guarantee the quality of the movie. Most of the action in Finding Nemo happened under the ocean. So he skips that part quickly and moves the action to Marine Life Institute. Also, most of it happen above water(!) and even some on the highway(!!). What makes the movie more interesting are the new characters like a shape changing octopus, echo-locating beluga whale, couple of sea lions that are possessive of a rock, and few more. He and writer Victoria Strouse have sequenced the movie with multiple flashbacks, whenever Dory remembers about something from the past. The climax may move you to tears and I was. However, when you compare it to other Pixar works, and as the novelty has already been lost, the overall experience is bit underwhelming.
Thomas Newman’s score is phenomenal as always. The music is one of the strong points. It accompanies the movie like a shadow, and come to the front only when necessary to elevate the drama or the action. The animation from Pixar is at par with its previous movies. However, they do not deviate much from the world of Finding Nemo. Cinematography by Jeremy Lasky and Editing by Axel Geddes are apt.
Ellen Degeneres injects her bumpy enthusiasm into Dory like she did in the first one. Modern Family actors Ed O'Neill as the ‘Septopus’ Hank, and Ty Burrell as Bailey, the beluga whale are welcome addition, and they add enough charm to the characters. Albert Brooks as Marlin, repeats his good performance as Nemo’s Father. Hayden Rolence gives voice to Nemo, instead of Alexander Gould (he is too grown up now) but he doesn’t have much to do in the sequel.
As I mentioned in my ‘The Good Dinosaur’ review, Pixar has set its standards so high and for the animation industry as well. There is a short movie that is shown before the movie - ‘Piper’. It could be the best short from Pixar with its jaw-dropping photorealistic animation, cute characters and a well told story. We have been made to expect such enthralling experience from each Pixar movie. Though Finding Dory may not meet such high expectations, it is still a good fun for the whole family. When compared to some recently released uninspiring animation sequels, it is still miles ahead.
7.5/10!Animation, 7, Review, English, 2016