“Finding Dory” in 2016 – A Heartwarming Journey Under the Sea
In 2016, Pixar Animation Studios returned to the depths of the ocean with “Finding Dory,” a delightful and emotionally resonant sequel to the beloved 2003 film “Finding Nemo.” Directed by Andrew Stanton, this underwater adventure brought back familiar characters and introduced new ones while exploring themes of family, friendship, and perseverance.
Dory’s Unforgettable Journey
The heart of “Finding Dory” lies with its titular character, Dory (voiced by Ellen DeGeneres). Dory is a regal blue tang fish with a unique quirk—she suffers from short-term memory loss. Despite her forgetfulness, Dory is endearing and determined, with an unshakable belief in the importance of family.
The film opens with Dory experiencing fragmented memories of her long-lost parents, leading her on a quest to reunite with them. Marlin (Albert Brooks) and Nemo (Hayden Rolence), who had previously crossed the ocean to find Nemo in the first film, now join Dory on her journey to the Marine Life Institute in California.
The Marine Life Institute and New Friends
The Marine Life Institute serves as the primary setting for “Finding Dory.” It’s a marine rehabilitation center where injured and displaced sea creatures find refuge and care. Within its walls, Dory encounters a colorful cast of characters, including Hank (voiced by Ed O’Neill), a curmudgeonly septopus (a seven-legged octopus) who becomes an unlikely ally, and Destiny (voiced by Kaitlin Olson), a nearsighted whale shark who communicates with Dory through a pipe.
These new characters add depth and humor to the film, each facing their own unique challenges. Hank, in particular, undergoes a transformation as he helps Dory in her quest, showcasing the film’s central theme of overcoming limitations through friendship and determination.
Flashbacks and Emotional Resonance
“Finding Dory” masterfully employs flashbacks to unravel Dory’s past and provide context for her relentless search for her parents. These poignant moments shed light on Dory’s upbringing, her relationship with her parents, and the origins of her mantra, “Just keep swimming.” The flashbacks add emotional depth to the story, inviting audiences to empathize with Dory’s journey and her longing for family.
The film also revisits the character of Nemo’s late mother, Coral, through a touching and bittersweet flashback. This brief yet powerful scene underscores the theme of loss and its enduring impact on the characters.
A Heartwarming Reunion and Lessons Learned
As Dory’s journey unfolds, the film explores the powerful bonds of friendship and the importance of accepting oneself, quirks and all. It culminates in a heartwarming reunion with her parents, Jenny (voiced by Diane Keaton) and Charlie (voiced by Eugene Levy), that brings tears of joy to both Dory and the audience.
“Finding Dory” imparts valuable lessons about embracing differences, facing adversity, and the enduring power of family and friendship. It reminds viewers that sometimes our most significant strengths can emerge from our perceived weaknesses.
In conclusion, “Finding Dory” in 2016 continued Pixar’s tradition of delivering emotionally resonant and visually stunning storytelling. It not only expanded upon the world of “Finding Nemo” but also crafted a heartfelt narrative around Dory, a character who charmed audiences with her unforgettable spirit and unwavering determination.