Film Review: Finding Dory

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Everyone has a place where they belong, a place to call home. But what if, like Dory, you can no longer remember where that is?

Dory knows she comes from somewhere. She knows she had parents, a family. Rather than dwelling on what she can’t remember, Dory sets off an adventure to reunite with her mum and dad.

Marlin and Nemo join her in an epic quest across the ocean, encountering new friends along the way. Finding her home is one thing; getting inside to find her parents is a different matter entirely.

Nothing deters Dory, not even the impossible.

Film: Finding Dory

Director: Andrew Stanton and Angus Maclane

Date: 2016

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I’ll admit straight up: I’m not the biggest Finding Nemo fan. It just didn’t touch me. Finding Dory, on the other hand, is a completely different story! I loved it! Finding Dory left me with the warm, fuzzy feelings I lacked with the previous film and there was truly the sense of the characters finding where they belong.

The plot is discovering where home is, even if that is right in front of you. But for Dory, it means travelling across the ocean and then navigating a marine centre with the help of Hank the septapus, Destiny the whale and Bailey the Beluga. Hot on her fins are Nemo and Marlin, determined to help and then save Dory.

Dory, Marlin and Nemo are the same loveable characters that we know. The audience gets to know Dory this time – and, despite her forgetfulness, she is one of the most determined and optimistic characters Pixar have created!

There are several flash-backs to Dory as a child, before she loses her parents. I know it is just animation, but I have to say…oh my word, she is just too cute! The wide eyes and Sloane Murray’s voice-over makes her the most adorable fish to have ever swum onto our screens.

As a children’s film, I knew there would be messages filtered into the plot. They hit the mark with this one: home is wherever you are loved and family aren’t necessarily blood-relations. Yes, the message (when viewing as an adult) is thrown in your face at the end, but that doesn’t lessen its impact.

I think there is a second message in this film. That those who are different, or see the world in another way, can be the truest friends and prepared to do anything in the name of friendship. There is no discrimination in Finding Dory, just each character overcoming their fears and triumphing when supported by their loved ones.

With returning voices from Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks and Hayden Rolence as Dory, Marlin and Nemo, Finding Dory will entertain the kids and make the adults smile.

If you aren’t a fan of Finding Nemo, I’d still recommend giving this film ago. It’s a warm, feel-good film that hit all the right notes for me.

Amazon | HMV

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