2003’s “Finding Nemo” came out when I was in the Eighth Grade when I was on the fence with seeing Disney kids films. I saw it on DVD after renting it from Hollywood video back in the day. I would definitely consider it a part of Pixar’s golden age gems. I’m glad that they did do a sequel and it wasn’t as repetitive some sequels can be. I felt that this movie developed the overall world of the franchise. Dory is a character that can be annoying in larger doses which I wasn’t sure if that was going to be a problem or not with the feature.
The film does a good job of using her problematic tendencies and turns it into a positive spin for the character which was very enjoyable. The character interactions between Marlin, Nemo and Dory were very strong throughout the film really establishing them as a family unit. There isn’t much of Nemo and Marlin in this picture. They are sidelined to a degree. Marlin goes backwards as a character somewhat but regains his status quo by the end of the picture.
Don’t cry, mommy… Don’t cry…
Some of the negatives I would say with the film is that it did come across a little “kiddy” at points and some of the emotional beats didn’t land as strong as the should have. If they were earned properly that would have made the film stronger. There is some rehashing of the first film but it’s not overdone nor does it feel like it’s trying to be a retelling. Even though parts of the film are told in flashbacks throughout the movie appose to the first where there was a backstory scene in the beginning it would have given them a stronger punch. I do credit the writers for trying something different with utilizing the character aspect of Dory’s short to memory to the benefit of the story, it just didn’t land right.
The new characters were great additions. Hank the octopus was a very welcomed 3rd lead to the film. His character had a great arc about being afraid to go back to the ocean that was earned by the end of the picture. Destiny and Bailey, Rudder and Fluke were all hilarious with great character moments. The Sigourney Weaver joke was well executed throughout the film. In the end I would say that this sequel is worthy of the original but it does not surpass it.