Perhaps the greatest irony in the Disney/Pixar universe is how unforgettable Dory really is.
Immortalized by Ellen DeGeneres, she charmed every heart on earth back in 2003’s Finding Nemo. You would be seldom to find anyone who had a different character named their favorite from the film. Now she gets her own lead role in Finding Dory, set one year after the original (though thirteen years later in real life).
She suddenly starts getting images back to her mind, which become memories of her parents (voiced by Eugene Levy and Diane Keaton). She is (nearly) one step ahead of Marlin (Albert Brooks) and Nemo (Haden Rolence). Eventually, they are lead to an aquarium that Dory was born in.
As any Disney/Pixar flick, we are introduced to a collage of new characters, from a near-sighted whale Destiny (Kaitlin Olson) and her friend Baily (Ty Burrell) to a bunch of lazy, lovable sea lions. Still, everyone has a favorite, and mine has to be the squid named Hank, who is voiced by the wonderful Ed O’Neill. I can only imagine the writers saying that only he could play that role.
Is it better than the first film? No, not at all. The first one was one of Disney/Pixar’s very best films. At the time, the studio really out did themselves with something that has nearly revolutionized the way we see things underwater to this day, while being both visually breathtaking and giving us a heart rendering story. The second film spends a little too much time out of the water, leaving us with a little less wonder than the first one did. It also leaves us with a lack of a real villain, unless you count the fact that humans are the real villian (which was told to perfection a long time ago in Bambi).
Parents: As long as your kids have seen the original (which I hope they have), they are ok seeing this film.
In the end, the film makers do justice to the characters (as in the Toy Story Trilogy). It also gives us a fitting end to the story line (at least for now) of Dory. She is forgetful, but she is loyal. She acts on instinct. She is kind to everyone.
We should all do what Dory does more often.
Note: I missed what happens after the credits, and I regret it horribly. Don’t make my mistake.
Overall: 3 and a half stars *** 1/2