Finding Dory is the long awaited sequel to Finding Nemo, which is one of Pixar’s best movies. I’m glad to report that it doesn’t disappoint. It doesn’t feel like a sequel, it feels like a continuation and that’s hard to do with such a classic movie. The story picks up a year after the events of the first film. Marlin and Nemo are living comfortably in their sea anemone with Dory living right next to them. Dory starts getting flashbacks of her childhood and remembers that she has parents that love and miss her. She feels compelled to cross the ocean to be reunited with them. High jinx ensue. I’m not going to talk about the plot. I’m just going to say that if you like Finding Nemo, you will like Finding Dory. You might even like it more than Nemo. I think Dory is a more complex film. The storytelling is nonlinear. It’s sad and happy, funny and serious, nostalgic and fresh. We revisit old characters and meet new ones. It’s everything that you want from a sequel. I left the theater feeling very satisfied. I felt like I got my money’s worth and I would gladly see it again.
The voice cast is solid. Ellen DeGeneres and Albert Brooks reprise their roles as Dory and Marlin. Ed O’Neil plays a surly octopus. Sigourney Weaver has an unforgettable voice cameo. Eugene Levy plays Dory’s awkward father. Newcomer Hayden Rolence takes over the voice of Nemo because puberty is not kind to child actors, but Alexander Gould (the original Nemo) lends his voice to a minor character. Diane Keaton, Idris Elba, Dominic West, Kate McKinnon, Bill Hader, John Ratzenberger, Willem Dafoe, Stephen Root, and many others have bit parts. Andrew Stanton returned to write, direct, and play Crush, everyone’s favorite sea turtle.
Finding Dory is a good family flick. It’s also great for date night. I saw it a few days after opening night and my auditorium applauded it after it was over. Not every movie deserves an ovation. This one did. Go watch it. It’s worth it.
Critically Rated at 15/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young