-By Sumit Kundra
One is often confused while deciding to watch a sequel of a box office success. It is rather risky to pin too many hopes on a sequel in general. However, this one was an absolute delight to the eyes and the soul. The movie comes up with a fine mix of emotional hooks and some great lines. The plot this time is set around the Pacific Coast of California instead of the Great Barrier Reef of Australia—at the Marine Life Institute that, as the omniscient recorded voice of Sigourney Weaver, reassures all visitors that the facility is dedicated not to human amusement, but to “Rescue, Rehabilitation and Release” of the sea creatures.
Ellen DeGeneres’ buoyant spirit and child-like glee as she vocally gives life to Dory, the forgetful yet fearless blue tang whose struggles with short-term memory loss, prove to be a crucial plus. After all, nothing is more freeing than barely being able to summon your past, which is why the impulsive Dory is so good at acting in the moment.
The sequel stretches beyond credibility when newcomer octopus Hank is somehow able to manoeuvre a runaway truck on a crowded highway when he can’t even reach the pedals or see over the dashboard. Thus, an element of illusion–which of course, has been well accepted by the audience–has been added to the movie.
The director churns up a plot similar to Finding Nemo, revolving around parental anxiety. When we initially meet Dory, she is an innocent, big-eyed, kiddy-voiced guppy whose concerned parents Charlie and Jenny explain how she must always tell whoever she meets, “I have short-term memory loss,” or as she sweetly calls it, “short-term remember-y loss.”
The movie fully kicks in when the older Dory experiences an electric jolt of a flashback and, in that brief flicker, realises she actually has parents. And off she goes, with ever-grumpy Marlin and supportive Nemo, following soon after, to locate her family. She might be looking for her parents, but Dory is really unearthing her own identity and manages to stir up other defining memories along the way, no matter how fleetingly. That includes the sources of her inspirational motto, just keep swimming, and how she came to speak whale.
Some old favourites from Finding Nemo float by, including that cool turtle dude Crush and son Squirt, fish-school instructor Mr. Ray and those “Mine! Mine! Mine!”-chanting seagulls.
Well, we can sum it up by saying that Finding Dory is funny, poignant, and thought-provoking; and delivers a beautifully animated adventure that adds another entertaining chapter to its predecessor’s classic story.
Director: Andrew Stanton
Cast: Ellen DeGeneres (Dory), Albert Brooks (Marlin), Hayden Rolence (Nemo), Ed O’Neill (Hank)
About the author: A philosophical seeker and a movie buff, Sumit Kundra likes to crack life with humour, and opine on everything related to Buddhism.