Back in 2003, cinema audiences worldwide were introduced to a peculiar couple: a slightly neurotic clownfish and an extremely forgetful blue tang. Together, they go on a journey across the oceans, meeting even weirder fish in order to search for the clownfish’ son. Spoiler alert: after lots of swimming, meetings with sharks, and murderous seagulls, they find him and Disney called this adventure “Finding Nemo”.
Sixteen years ago, the film was an incredible success, with stellar reviews, box office records and an Oscar win. Now, in 2016, the long-awaited sequel finds it’s way onto the silver screen, “Finding Dory”. This time, the forgetful but o so lovable blue tang fish Dory is the focus of the story. Voiced by Ellen Degeneres, Dory sets out on an adventure to find her parents, and she is once again joined by timid clownfish Marlin and his son Nemo. Together with the film’s audience, the three fish embark on a heart-warming and entertaining journey.
One of the biggest selling points of the original “Finding Nemo” (2003) was the beautiful animation and its sequel is no different. The film’s animation is incredibly detailed, full of color and depth, and echoes a feeling of warmth and friendliness. The characters, from Dory and clumsy whale Destiny to Nemo and cranky octopus Hank, are designed with so much love and attention to detail, leaving them looking fun and friendly, with their own unique characteristics. The animation is so life-like and beautiful, the audience dives into the deep ocean for 90 minutes and is bewildered by the bright colors, lovable characters and heart-warming storyline.
But to bring the beautiful animation to life, “Finding Dory” needs a talented cast of voice-actors. Main character Dory is voiced by talkshow host Ellen DeGeneres and it’s really noticeable how much fun she has at portraying the character. DeGeneres makes Dory an incredibly funny and sweet character, but also adds a deeper layer to the little blue tang, a more emotional and relatable layer. On her journey to find her parents, Dory encounters many fishy friends, such as the cranky octopus Hank, who is voiced by Modern Family actor Ed O’Neill.
Apart from the film being qualitatively well-made, “Finding Dory”‘s biggest selling points is how it makes the audience feel: warm, light-hearted and happy. The characters, from the super cute otter family (who manage to stop traffic with merely their cuteness) to the mentally disturbed bird Becky, find their way into the audience’s heart and during the entire film, you feel and root for them – at times rather loudly, in my case. After seeing “Finding Dory”, you will leave the cinema feeling happy and at the end of the day, isn’t that what it’s all about?