Two weeks ago, Pixar announced that Finding Dory (2015) was officially in the works. Once I had confirmed that the story was not another Internet April Fools’ joke, my heart was immediately filled with joy as I began to imagine how wonderful the project could turn out. While I’ve never been the biggest fan of animated movies, there is a special place in my heart for adventurous, talking fish (and also cat GIFS, but that one is not relevant). Not everyone agrees with this sentiment, though. For some, creating a sequel of a good movie is like sending a bad band on stage after the best act of the night. For others, sequels allow a continuation of a story that would not have been possible otherwise. So, in the case of Finding Dory, who is right? (Read in the voice of the Wise Owl from the Tootsie Pop commercials.) Well, let’s find out!
HOT Ellen Degeneres On a list of the world’s most influential role models that I made up just now, Ellen Degeneres occupies every spot. In order to avoid filling up all of the available space on the Internet with a description of how awesome she is, I have decided to name all of her best qualities in bullet point format below.
– Her goal in life is to make people happy, which is much more reasonable than my goals to achieve world domination or get a job after college, so that’s a plus.
– She once gave away a trip to Australia…to every person in her audience.
– Her relationship with Portia de Rossi restores my faith in the institution of marriage but also makes me want to vomit occasionally because cute couples do that to me sometimes.
– She never makes jokes at other people’s expense.
– She and Oprah are like, BFFs.
More Dory! Dory was easily the best character in Finding Nemo (2003), with the exclusion of the “mine” seagulls and “The Butt.” Yet, we learned next to nothing about her in the original movie. Finding Dory, which chronicles Dory’s journey to reunite with her family, finally delves into Dory’s backstory. I have not been more excited to meet a fish’s relatives since…well, ever. What will Dory’s dad be like? Her mom?? Does she have siblings??? CAN WE JUST WATCH THE MOVIE NOW?
It’s family-friendly. The greatest aspect of Finding Dory, though, is that it is applicable to all age groups. Children will be dazzled by the animated effects. Older folk will be able to point at the screen and yell, “Hey, doesn’t that sound like Ellen?” at least twice a minute. College students, who have waited over a decade for this film, will be able to sit next their younger siblings, parents, and grandparents at the movie theater, all at the same time. I don’t know how exactly that will happen, considering you can only physically sit next to two people at a time, but I’m sure someone will figure it out.
NOT It could endanger the Blue Tang. Now, this is where some of the ideas get weird. According to one report, after the release of Finding Nemo, thousands of people flocked to their local pet stores to buy their very own Clown Fish and, in doing so, almost drove the species to the point of extinction. Now, think about that for a second. When Ratatouille (2007) came out, sales for rats did not suddenly skyrocket, nor did the demand for robot parts after the release of WALL-E (2008). Finding Nemo’s impact on the public was so significant, it actually threatened to eliminate an entire species. And before you say, “Oh, but they went to good homes and lived happily ever after,” it should also be noted that many of these fish did not even live a long and healthy tank life but were flushed by unsuspecting children believing that they were “setting the fish free,” like the movie itself had suggested. (Oops.)
It could ruin the original. If I ever stumbled upon a magical genie who awarded me 3 wishes, I would reserve one for the purpose of prohibiting the unnecessary continuation of good TV shows or movies. Meaning, rather than watch a successful show run out of story lines and die a slow miserable death until it is cancelled, I would wish that every show end before it falls into this inevitable spiral of destruction. Sequels, some say, should work the same way in that they should never be created. Movies like Shrek (2001) and Toy Story (1995) were so good in their original form that adding a sequel would just be unnecessary.
It is scientifically inaccurate. This one is the real kicker. At the end of Finding Nemo, Dory and Marlin finally find P. Sherman 42 Wallaby Way, Sydney, Australia and rescue Nemo. However, according to Pixar, the new film centers around Dory’s attempts to find her family off the coast of California. This would suggest that Dory and the fish gang swam from Sydney all the way back the United States, which is scientifically improbable. Blue Tangs (Dory’s species), or any small fish for that matter, would not be able to swim that distance without being attacked by a larger fish or killed through other means.
Contrary to what my lengthy descriptions of the NOTs may suggest, I have categorized Finding Dory as HOT, simply because it can appeal to a wide audience and the thought of watching more scenes with Dory makes me all warm and fuzzy inside. While I do appreciate the absurdity of some of the NOT theories, they are not enough to convince me that the film is not worth making. But what do you think? Was Pixar in the right for attempting to continue the Finding Nemo series? Or do you think they should have turned a blind eye to the idea and kept on swimming?