Disney – 2016
Theatrical Release: June 17, 2016
Release Date: November 15, 2016
Starring: Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks, Ed O’Neill, Ty Burrell, Kaitlin Olsen, Idris Elba, Diana Keaton, Eugene Levy, Hayden Rolence
Directed by: Andrew Stanton & Angus MacLane
Music by: Thomas Newman
Written by: Andrew Stanton & Victoria Strouse
MPAA Rating: PG
“Finding Dory” (2016) features an all-star voice cast, reuniting Ellen DeGeneres (“The Ellen DeGeneres Show”) and Albert Brooks (“This is 40”) as Dory and Marlin, the ever-optimistic blue tang and the uptight but loyal clown fish. Ed O’Neill (“Modern Family”) lends his voice to “septopus” Hank, Kaitlin Olson (“It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”) voices whale shark Destiny, and Ty Burrell (“Modern Family”) gives voice to beluga whale Bailey. Dory’s doting parents Charlie and Jenny are portrayed by Eugene Levy (“Schitt’s Creek”) and Diane Keaton (“Love the Coopers”), and 12-year-old Hayden Rolence (“Beta Persei”) steps in as Nemo, the young clownfish with a lucky fin. Thirteen years after the original, audiences get a new chapter in the story of their favorite forgetful blue tang. As returning director Andrew Stanton describes, “I realized that I was worried about Dory. The idea of her short-term memory loss and how it affected her was unresolved. What if she got lost again?” His response is a touching tale of friendship and family that’s truly unforgettable … perhaps even for Dory.
Dory, our favorite forgetful regal blue tang, returns alongside Marlin and Nemo in the sequel to “Finding Nemo” Dory starts remembering things of her past and how she lost her family. She decides to try and put the pieces back together of what she does remember and find her family. Along the way her memory keeps getting sparked as she hears different phrases and quips from new characters. Most notably is Hank the octopus who turns out to be Dory’s biggest ally in her quest to find her parents. We also meet a whale shark named Destiny and a beluga whale named Bailey. As Dory continues to remember her past she finds herself in new adventures along the way.
While this movie is visually stunning and the audio has a dimension all its own, the story drags at times and seems to fall short. It was easy to laugh and be amused watching the original “Finding Nemo” but with “Finding Dory” (2016) the recycled jokes and situations wasn’t endearing but annoying. Pixar seemed to miss the mark with this one, which is such a shame since the first movie was cutting edge. There are certain situations that really fail like whale sharks don’t eat fish. In some of the bonus features they explore how they needed to learn how fish swim and even turn so the could mimic it in the computers to recreate the same motions for this animation. With that kind of attention to detail, one might think they would have actually learned about the animals they created. Another situation is how Hank lost one of his tentacles and the story behind it is a bit rough. The ending really takes a turn for the worse and while there is a happy ending, getting there is just nonsense and loses the charm that we fell in love with in the original.
It is the kind of movie that you won’t remember much of what happened immediately after watching it. Usually these movies from Pixar are family friendly and heart warming but, there are too many misses that make it hard to fall in love with and even harder to recommend.
Visually “Finding Dory” (2016) gets an A+. The audio with the background music to the splashing and sound effects to set up the scene are spectacular as well. I did get to see the digital version before seeing the Blu-ray and the higher quality audio is what makes it worth while to buy the actual Blu-ray version. The 1080p quality on the digital copy is quite good but, on a large projector the Blu-ray is still superior but the digital version is quite good and has come along way over the past few years.
The bonus features are featured on the digital version as well as on the Blu-ray copy and there are some fun and interesting things worth watching if you like to see the actors recording their voice parts and how the CGI was created. The digital only exclusives are very interesting especially the Hidden Secrets of Finding Dory where they show certain things that cross over from Pixar movie to Pixar movie as well as the meanings behind logos and such.
Additional Technical Features:
Feature running time: 97 minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Video Aspect: 1.78:1
Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, English DTS-HD 5.1 High Resolution, French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Region Code: A,B,C
- Tank Gang (Digital exclusive) – After a close encounter with a squid leaves them separated from Dory, Marlin and Nemo unexpectedly meet up with the Tank Gang from “Finding Nemo,” who make it their mission to get to the Marine Life Institute … by any means necessary.
- Hidden Seacrets of Finding Dory (Digital exclusive) – Take a deep dive to catch secret Easter Eggs throughout the movie. And just like Hank, they’re hidden in plain sight.
- (HD) Theatrical Short: “Piper” – A hungry sandpiper hatchling ventures from her nest for the first time to dig for food by the shoreline. The only problem is that the food is buried beneath the sand where scary waves roll up onto the shore.
- (HD) Marine Life Interviews (All-New Mini Short) – Meet the inhabitants of the Marine Life Institute as they remember our favorite blue tang.
- (HD) The Octopus That Nearly Broke Pixar – Pixar’s “Team Hank” unravels the challenges, frustrations, and rewards of bringing to life the studio’s crankiest and most technically complicated character ever.
- (HD) What Were We Talking About? – This piece showcases the complex routes Dory’s story took as the filmmakers worked to construct a comprehensive narrative involving a main character with short-term memory loss.
- (HD) Casual Carpool – What’s it like to commute with the voices of Marlin, Charlie, Bailey and Hank? Join “Finding Dory” writer/director Andrew Stanton as he drives Albert Brooks, Eugene Levy, Ty Burrell and Ed O’Neill to work.
- (HD) Animation & Acting – How do you create a connection between a human audience and a fish? This behind-the-scenes look behind the curtain examines the process of constructing believable performances through a unique collaboration between the director, voice actors and animators
- (HD) Creature Features – The cast of “Finding Dory” share cool facts about the creatures they voice in the film
- (HD) Deep in the Kelp – Disney Channel’s Jenna Ortega guides us on a research trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium to show how far the “Finding Dory” crew went to make Dory’s world feel real.
- (HD) Skating & Sketching with Jason Deamer – “Finding Dory” character art director Jason Deamer talks about how he got to Pixar, how he draws the characters in the film, and how falling off a skateboard teaches you lessons you can use in art and life.
- (HD) Dory’s Theme – A spirited discussion among the composer, music editor and director of “Finding Dory” about the musical elements that shape Dory’s quirky and joyful theme.
- (HD) Rough Day on the Reef – Sometimes computers make mistakes. Here you’ll see some of the funny, creepy and just plain bizarre footage the crew encountered while making “Finding Dory.
- Commentary – Director Andrew Stanton, co-director Angus MacLane and producer Lindsey Collins deliver their personal perspective on “Finding Dory.”
- (HD) 7 Deleted Scenes (introduced by director Andrew Stanton)
- (HD) Living Aquariums (4 Segments)
- (HD) 4 Trailers
- Bonus DVD
- Digital HD Copy
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If you have children they will certainly be amused, but even my little guy told me he prefers “Finding Nemo” to this one. He still enjoyed it and was entertained although I don’t see him requesting this one as much as other Pixar films. I had high hopes but was quite disappointed. It’s certainly worth a rental and I suggest doing just that before rushing out to buy “Finding Dory.”