Did Finding Dory match the successes of Finding Nemo?

Since it was announced that Finding Dory was going into production in 2015, I have been so excited to get back into the world of Finding Nemo and all of the sweet and innocent fun that came with that movie.

I often stay away from reviews, as most people do when they’re excited for a movie, so they are not swayed by opinion. But, I was secretly happy that through social media, I had not seen one complaint.

But the day finally came where I could make my mind up for myself!

As always, every Pixar movie opens with a delightful short that acts as a kind of fable. If you’re not familiar with fables, they are short stories that have hidden life messages that usually revolve around family or self confidence or loving the people around you.

This short was called Piper and was the story of a baby Sandpiper who has to learn the hard way that he has to get out into the world and find his own food when he’s hungry.

The animation is flawless, almost David Attenborough worthy as the scene opens on a beach with hundreds of birds feeding on shellfish in the swaying tide, running into the wet sand as the tide recedes in order to quickly nab their lunch.
Our little chick takes a little persuading by his mother to come out of his comfy nest and fend for himself in order to cure his growling tummy.

piper
After a couple of rough run ins with the tide and being too slow, he soon realises, with the help of a small crab that he can overcome his fears and use them to his advantage in order to get the biggest shellfish of all.
It’s an adorable, lighthearted short that leaves you smiling from ear to ear and fills the cinema hall with ‘awws’. A great introductory act to what will be the sweetest and happiest Disney movie of the year.

Finding Dory takes up where we left off 13 years ago (my goodness), where Nemo is safe at home and Dory has settled into family life with Marlin and Nemo. From the beginning we are shown flashbacks of Dory’s childhood. Baby Dory will be the top selling plush of the year because she’s adorable and her high pitched, innocent voice makes you want to cuddle her to death.

In the way that Dory does, she decides on an irrational whim after a school trip with Nemo to leave the reef and find her family. This leads her to a marine life institute where she grew up with her parents and through various triggered flashbacks, she pieces together how she came to be separated from her parents and learns more about her life, meeting old friends and new friends along the way.

The animation has vastly improved, but still keeps that soft edged bug eyed character that we love from Pixar. The jokes are family friendly and there isn’t really a villain character that you can boo or hiss at. But this doesn’t seem to leave a hole, this film is about working together to help a friend and they have enough problems along the way without having another element to make the journey difficult. I feel a villain character would have made this film too complicated and a little hard to believe.

We are reintroduced to characters we love like Crush, Squirt and Mr Ray which makes you feel that child-like blissful feeling that Disney movies are made of.

Overall I was impressed by the movie. Sometimes sequels can flop and can make you think that you’d rather they’d have just let the original fade into the background. But this seemed to bring Finding Nemo to a satisfying close with all character arcs reaching a conclusion.

I would recommend this for a date, a family trip or just to take your favourite little ones for a day trip. For new and old fans alike, this is definitely a film not to be missed this summer.

Just keep swimming!

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