Thursday, September 22, 2016

Finding Nemo (2003)

Note:  This review was originally posted to my Epinions account.

Marlin and Coral, two clownfish, are going to be parents. They have several hundred baby clownfish on the way and Marlin wants to name half Marlin Jr. and the other half Coral Jr. They’ve just moved into a great neighborhood and have great neighbors. Unfortunately, a big fish comes along and eats Coral and all but one of the eggs. Marlin names the one remaining fish Nemo, which is what Coral had wanted.

The next scene is Marlin getting Nemo ready for school. Marlin is understandably protective of Nemo. Nemo is his only child and has a lame fin, too. (Marlin tells Nemo that it’s his ‘lucky’ fin.) It’s a tense moment for Marlin having to let go, but Nemo’s excited. He can’t wait to get out and see things. The trouble is that Nemo’s going to a part of the ocean that Marlin considers dangerous. Marlin arrives just in time to see Nemo heading out towards a boat.

This is where the action begins. Nemo, in an act of defiance, goes all the way out to the boat to show everyone that he can do it. On the way back, he gets captured by a diver. Everyone else manages to get to safety, but Marlin has lost his son. He has to go and find him. Along the way, he meets a blue fish named Dory. (Yes, she’s a natural blue.) Dory’s a little forgetful. She thinks it runs in the family, but she can’t really remember that far back. Either way, Marlin and Dory have a long journey ahead of them. They find the dentist’s mask. Since Dory can read, they know where to go. Figuring out how to get there is a different story. They are able to ask directions and don’t waste too much time getting to where they have to go.

Nemo wakes up to find himself in a tank at a dentist’s office. (The dentist is also the diver that captured him.) He meets the dentist’s other fish, which were all bought. To make matters worse, Nemo isn’t staying for very long. Nemo is to be presented to the dentist’s niece as a birthday present at the end of the week. The girl has a reputation as a fish killer. The dentist props up a picture of the girl for the fish to see and in it, there’s the fish she got as last year’s gift – floating in the bag she got it in! Now, the pressure’s really on to get out. An angelfish by the name of Gil is the established leader of the fish tank. The others inhabiting the tank are Bloat, Peach, Bubbles, Deb, and Jacques. They all have to work to get Nemo out. (Hopefully, they can get out, too, but Nemo’s the one with the deadline.) Gil has a trick or two up his sleve, but getting out won’t be easy.

The movie’s rated G and 100 minutes in length. Despite the rating, you might want to consider before you take young children. As I mentioned, Coral and most of the eggs are eaten. You don’t actually see this happen, but you’ll probably have to explain why they’re gone. Marlin also faces some troubles on his way to find Nemo, including a shark that’s out to get him. (The shark is part of an AA-type support group for sharks who don’t want to eat fish.) I don’t know that it will necessarily scare or upset a child, but it’s something to consider.

It should be an enjoyable movie for children and the adults that take them. I’m an adult and enjoyed it on my own. (I rented it from Netflix.) My brother has also seen it and enjoyed the animation. (He has an interest in art and CG.) The animation alone will make watching this movie enjoyable. The DVD that I got from Netflix had a behind-the-scenes feature that you should watch. It shows how the movie was made and what went into the animation.

The only thing that I didn’t like about the DVD was that in order to see the deleted scenes, you had to go through the audio commentary. I didn’t see any way to watch them separately. One of the great things about DVD is the ability to add such features. I still liked it. I have to give this movie five stars.

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