Craig's Movie Reviews

I love movies. I love writing about them. Hope you like reading what I write.

Finding Dory

I’m gonna just say this, Toy Story 4 is a terrible idea. 3 ended on a near-perfect note and the short films on Sky Movies (now Sky Cinema) that have come out showing what happened after that ending are fine, but I just don’t care enough to watch another movie that will almost certainly disappoint.

In other news, Finding Dory is the sequel to the classic Pixar film Finding Nemo. It has been a year since little Nemo was found by his father (spoilers) and now the attention switches to Dory, the Blue Tang fish suffering from short-term memory loss. She wants to find her family, a hard thing to do with her condition.

Really Cute Dory

In this film there are flashbacks to Dory as a memory-challenged little Tang. Yes she looks like this. Yes she is utterly adorable.

Dory has to be one of the top two characters of all time to suffer from short-term memory loss. Ellen Degeneres plays her and she exhibits some genuinely great voice acting. She conveys so much love, comedy and pain from her condition. Dory never feels sorry for herself, she is always upbeat and funny. In the first movie, she was treated entirely for laughs, now though, despite a lot of the comedy is still there, the audience feels a great deal of sympathy toward her. Her song “Just Keep Swimming” never felt so poignant.

It’s good news that Dory is able to carry a film so well as that is always a difficulty when making a sequel to a film following a side-character from the original. It’s not a hard and fast rule, but for every The Simpsons there’s an Even Almighty.

This good starting point gives way to a truly excellent Pixar film. Pixar have a trick of putting you through the entire spectrum of emotion while you’re under there spell and that’s by design. You get there because Pixar at their best make truly special and brilliant movies.

The side-characters are delightful too. Of course we have Marlin, Nemo’s Dad and Nemo himself (who sounds like he’s the fish equivalent of a teenager though how these fish survive so long is a mystery to me) back and while their relationship is not as dynamic as it once was due to their big emotional arc being solved in the previous film, they do get some nice scenes together.

On top of that we continue to get a great cast of supporting players who are all utterly hilarious. I won’t spoil who they are or what they’re up to, but they are awesome.

What I think makes this film feel like an organic continuation to the Finding franchise is that it isn’t really a road movie like the last one was. Granted the previous movie involved swimming rather than driving, but the structure was that of a central character going a considerable distance to achieve a certain goal and the meeting of several brilliantly done characters

It’s at this point where I make a confession to you guys. I never loved Finding Nemo. I liked it, definitely. I couldn’t think of anything wrong with it, I just didn’t connect with it as a kid the way I did other films. Upon reflection though, it was technically a perfect story. And this film is an excellent follow-up.

Recommended Scenario: If you want a good Pixar Sequel that isn’t anything about Toys.

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This entry was posted on August 10, 2016 by in Film Review, Released in 2016.
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