The latest Disney/PIXAR animated movie Finding Dory shows it’s up to snuff in this family film now on Blu-ray, DVD and in a combo pack. This spin-off of Finding Nemo takes families on another journey with this time looking for Dory’s parents. Although it can be considered a stand-alone film, the trip has many similarities to Nemo’s big adventure. While this shouldn’t be a problem for even the littlest tyke, parents may yawn a bit, get antsy, and even look at their glow in the dark watch once or twice or maybe even three times. Hopefully the new characters will keep the older folks amused, especially my favorite Hank the octopus.
The film opens with Dory (Sloane Murray) a young fish being tended by her mother Jenny (Diane Keaton) and father Charlie (Eugene Levy). She’s given strict instructions not to get too close to the fast moving current that’s just outside the boundaries of their living area. But, Dory has a problem called short term memory loss, or she forgets most everything moments after being told something. Not minding where she is going one day she gets dragged into the strong undertow and gets separated from her parents.
Flash forward a couple of years and we find Dory (Ellen DeGeneres) all grown up and living with Marlin (Albert Brooks) and Nemo (Hayden Rolence) following their adventure to find Nemo. Longing to find her parents, a new adventure begins as Marlin and Nemo set out with Dory on a trip thousands of miles away to California.
Directors Andrew Stanton (Finding Nemo) and Angus MacLane (Toy Story of Terror) take audiences into a very realistic ocean that’s filled with sea life and an abundance of underwater landscape. They make their film very adventurous adding fun things during every scene. Returning characters sea turtles Crush (Andrew Stanton) and Squirt (Bennett Dammann) help the travelers get to California. New additions add to the fun including an octopus who can blend into almost any background called Hank (Ed O’Neill), Bailey (Ty Burrell) a beluga whale who’s sonar’s on the fritz, his whale shark friend Destiny (Kaitlin Olson) that’s near sighted, and two funny seals Fluke (Idris Elba) and Rudder (Dominic West) are among many more.
The movie has a lot of family values, but the most prevalent that sends a very good message surrounds connecting with parents and family. The film also shows friendship, love, protecting young ones, respect for others and working together to make a better world, both under the sea and on land.
The story does get a bit drawn out and can give moms and dads a feeling of Déjà vu if they saw Finding Nemo, but the wild and wacky ending should pep them up. For the youngest children, parents may want to sit close as there are a few scenes that can upset or scare, especially when they are first introduced to certain characters. But, for the most part the movie is family friendly and fun to watch.
There’s over 2 hours of special features including the following:
3D Blu-ray, Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD Includes:
“The Octopus That Nearly Broke Pixar” – Pixar’s “Team Hank” unravels the challenges, frustrations, and rewards of bringing to life the studio’s crankiest and most technically complicated character ever.
“What Were We Talking About?” – This piece showcases the complex routes Dory’s story took as the filmmakers worked to construct a comprehensive narrative involving a main character with short-term memory loss.
“Casual Carpool” – What’s it like to commute with the voices of Marlin, Charlie, Bailey and Hank? Join “Finding Dory” writer/director Andrew Stanton as he drives Albert Brooks, Eugene Levy, Ty Burrell and Ed O’Neill to work.
“Animation & Acting” – How do you create a connection between a human audience and a fish? This behind-the-scenes look behind the curtain examines the process of constructing believable performances through a unique collaboration between the director, voice actors and animators.
“Creature Features” – The cast of “Finding Dory” share cool facts about the creatures they voice in the film.
“Deep in the Kelp” – Disney Channel’s Jenna Ortega guides us on a research trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium to show how far the “Finding Dory” crew went to make Dory’s world feel real.
“Skating & Sketching with Jason Deamer” – “Finding Dory” character art director Jason Deamer talks about how he got to Pixar, how he draws the characters in the film, and how falling off a skateboard teaches you lessons you can use in art and life.
“Dory’s Theme” – A spirited discussion among the composer, music editor and director of “Finding Dory” about the musical elements that shape Dory’s quirky and joyful theme.
“Rough Day on the Reef” – Sometimes computers make mistakes. Here you’ll see some of the funny, creepy and just plain bizarre footage the crew encountered while making “Finding Dory.”
“Commentary” – Director Andrew Stanton, co-director Angus MacLane and producer Lindsey Collins deliver their personal perspective on “Finding Dory.”
“Deleted Scenes” (introduced by director Andrew Stanton)
“Theatrical Short” Piper & Commentary
There are also two short animated films included in the Bonus Features:
“Piper” – A hungry sandpiper hatchling ventures from her nest for the first time to dig for food by the shoreline. The only problem is that the food is buried beneath the sand where scary waves roll up onto the shore.
“Marine Life Interviews” (All-New Mini Short) – Meet the inhabitants of the Marine Life Institute as they remember our favorite blue tang.
Finding Dory has been rated PG by the MPAA for mild thematic elements. Now available on DVD, Blu-ray, and a combo pack. Most of the adult jokes should go over the heads of the little ones and tense situations are all resolved.
FINAL ANALYSIS: Disney/Pixar pull off another instant classic for their vault.
Specifications and additional video information:
Cast: Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks, Ed O’Neill, Kaitlin Olson, Diane Keaton, Eugene Levy, Hayden Rolence, Ty Burrell, Idris Elba, Dominic West, Sigourney Weaver
Director: Andrew Stanton and Angus MacLane
MPAA Rating: PG for mild thematic elements
Genre: Adventure, Animated, Family
Running Time: 1hr. 37 min.
Video Release Date: November 15, 2016
Original Theatrical Release Date: June 17, 2016
Language: English (can be changed to Spanish or French)
Review Format: Blu-ray (also available in DVD and Blu-ray/DVD combo pack)
Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1
Video: Widescreen, Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Number of Discs: 3 Disc Blu-ray/DVD Box Set + Digital HD
Distributed by: Buena Vista Home Entertainment