Updated: Dec 22, 2019
A timid clownfish tries to find his son after he had been captured in the Great Barrier Reef.
Finding Nemo (2003), directed by Andrew Stanton (Wall - E; A Bug’s Life), traces the desperate journey of a humble clownfish across the sea to find and rescue his abducted son. The characters he meets along the way and how his journey changes him are the essence of this heartwarming, simply beautiful movie.
The opening scene of this movie is, in one word, devastating. We see a happy, to - be fish family torn apart by a barracuda. The excitement of a nervous father and then his agony when he sees it all taken away from him… except Nemo. As if the first tragedy wasn’t enough, Marlin’s one surviving child is abducted and thrust into an ocean of danger - literally. Although Marlin is right to be protective and possessive of his child, through the course of the rescue, Marlin learns to ‘live a little’.
The story of Finding Nemo is told from the perspectives of Marlin and Nemo, at different times, and the movie executes this style perfectly. We meet beloved characters like Dory along the way as we are simultaneously introduced to the aquarium family at the dentist’s. Finding Nemo brings out the best in its setting, using the atmosphere of the sea to create the most fascinating characters and the most thrilling sequences. For example, the scene when Marlin and Dory encounter the group of sharks and attend their meeting, the choice of an abandoned ship as the location was fantastic and maintained suspense while keeping the audience amused by the unusual shark gang’s rituals.
Finding Nemo is an animated film which has ‘got it all’ and has never failed to entertain.
The characters we meet are so unique and hysterical and are brought to life excellently by their voice actors. Dory is definitely a highlight with her memory loss and adorably annoying ideas (attempting to communicate with whales, jellyfish bounce race, to name a couple). Voiced hilariously by Ellen DeGeneres, Dory has become a favorite to many viewers and even received her ‘own’ movie - Finding Dory - in 2016. Albert Brooks captured the serious, over - protective attitude of Marlin, who tends to hurt some feelings, despite purely good intentions. Moving to the Tank Gang in the dentist’s aquarium, we have Willem Dafoe as the wise natural leader, Gill, surrounded by Brad Garrett as Bloat, Allison Janney as Peach the Starfish and Stephen Root as Bubbles. And of course, there’s Alexander Gould as the loveable innocent dear Nemo, who lies at the center of this film.
This movie touched hearts; pushed audiences off their seats in laughter and has found a special place among the generations which I doubt it will ever lose. Finding Nemo is an animated film which has ‘got it all’ and has never failed to entertain.