The sequel to Pixar’s delightful Finding Nemo (2003) is not as good as the original (not surprising) but still worth watching. This time the focus is on the blue fish named Dory (Ellen Degeneres) who helped Marlin (Albert Brooks) find Nemo in the first film. Dory suffers from short-term memory loss and disappears from her home while still young. Now, many years later, she wants to find her parents, who are likely very far away. With her lack of memory, this will be a serious challenge, but with the help of an octopus named Hank (Ed O’Neill) and a whale shark named Destiny (Kaitlin Olson), not to mention Marlin, there might be a chance.
There are many good aspects to Finding Dory: The voices are well-done, Hank is a wonderful new character (worth the price of admission), there’s a great message about community and family and, best of all, there’s no villain, so need for redemptive violence. Like the first film, it’s good fun for the whole family.
However, there are some problems. The made-for-3D cinematography is actually a step down from the 13-year-old Finding Nemo and there’s far too much silly action (like the way-too-long and ludicrous truck scene), at the expense of imaginative story and dialogue, probably also because it was made for 3D. In a nutshell, Finding Dory is missing the magic of Finding Nemo because it sacrifices the mysterious depths for surface splash. Somewhere between *** and ***+. My mug is up!