In 2003, audiences were taken on a magical deep sea adventure and were introduced to a very special clown-fish. The beautiful aquatic world of Finding Nemo, that Andrew Stanton and his team from Pixar created, captured my attention from the first frame. The colourful creatures that populated the ocean floor. The shafts of sunlight that danced through the water and the forests of kelp. The undulation of each arm in a sea anemone. Every detail was handled with the utmost care. And although the story revolved around Marlin’s journey to be reunited with his lost son, my heart was stolen by a sweet (and sometimes forgetful) blue tang named Dory.
When word got out that a sequel for Finding Nemo was in the works, I was beyond excited. And when Ellen DeGeneres, announced that the film would be about Dory…
It was then a wait for a trailer and I bawled the first time I watched it.
Then it was the wait for the film itself. Well, the wait finally ended last night. And it was well worth it.
*** ENTERING THE REALM OF SPOILERS – THIS IS YOUR WARNING – LAST CHANCE TO SWIM AWAY ***
Before I launch into all things Dory, I want to take a moment to talk about the adorable short that was shown prior to the film.
Piper is about a hatchling bird learning how to survive out of the nest. It’s a delightful little sketch about overcoming obstacles. There is something incredibly powerful when a story can be told without the use of a single word.
Baby Dory & All the Cute
Okay, I have to collect myself because the squishable factor in this film is too much.
Baby Dory (Sloane Murray) was more than I could handle. Her big wide eyes and her sweet demeanor completely stole the show. And the flashbacks with her parents were just precious. Just keep swimming. Purple shells. Cuteness overload.
Her big eyes, her adorable laugh… I can’t even. Oh and did I mention there was also a baby otters cameo…
Seriously. Look at them! Don’t you just want to cuddle with them? OTTER CUDDLES!
Adventures are always more fun with a travel buddy and in Dory’s case, it came in the form of a curmudgeonly septapus named, Hank (Ed O’Neill).
Having survived a tough life in the ocean, all Hank wants to do is to move to a nice retirement aquarium in Cleveland but when he meets Dory, those plans begin to change. They escaped from quarantine, commandeered a baby carriage, survived vicious children, hijacked a truck… Wait a second, does that make Hank and Dory felons?
Voice Acting Randomness
So you probably realized that both Ed O’Neill and Ty Burrell, who voice Hank and Bailey, star in Modern Family together. But did you know that the two sea lions that befriend Marlin and Nemo, Fluke and Rudder, are voiced by Idris Elba and Dominic West? The Wire reunion!!!
Also I found it hilarious that the omnipotent voice of the marine rescue centre is voiced by Ripley herself, Sigourney Weaver.
No Place Like Home
Even before Dory was finally reunited with her parents (Eugene Levy & Diane Keaton), I was already in full on waterworks mode. Note: tears and 3D glasses, do not mix.
The first shell in the sand, followed by another, and another, until the camera zooms out to reveal the multiple paths of shells leading home… *quietly sobs*
And then when her parents acknowledge that Dory did it, that she found them. My heart couldn’t handle.
What Would Dory Do?
It’s amazing how a little animated blue fish could offer so much advice for the world. Be accepting and kind. Believe in yourself and never give up. Words to live by if you ask me.
I’m so happy I stayed past the credits. The entire movie I was hoping to catch at least a glimpse of the old crew lead by Gil. And there they were, still in the plastic bags (although now algae filled – except for Jacques’ of course), only to be scooped up and tossed back into captivity. I hope they don’t end up in the touch pool because well, if these movies have taught me anything it’s that children are terrifying.
Get yourself to a theatre as fast as you can. I can’t gush enough about how much I enjoyed this film. Special thanks as always to my dear friend Kevin for the screening passes and to my cousin Sindy for being my own personal Dory.
I give Finding Dory five special Nemo fins out of five! Go see it 🙂
‘Til next time, just keep swimming,