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Blu-ray Review: Finding Dory

November 15, 2016

By John Corrado

finding-dory-blu-rayArriving thirteen years after the release of the beloved Finding Nemo, Finding Dory focuses on Dory (Ellen Degeneres) as she starts having flashes of remembering her parents, Jenny (Diane Keaton) and Charlie (Eugene Levy).  When she sets off to find them, Marlin (Albert Brooks) and Nemo (Hayden Rolence) follow her to the Marine Life Institute in California.

This is a rare sequel that not only feels warranted but also lives up to its predecessor, managing to be entertaining, frequently adorable and also emotionally devastating, with a touching message about accepting differences.  It’s one of the best animated movies of the year, and another winner from Pixar.  For more on the film itself, you can read our three views right here.

The Blu-ray also includes commentary with director Andrew Stanton, co-director Angus MacLane and producer Lindsey Collins, the lovely short film Piper, the brand new Marine Life Interviews, which features characters from the film remembering Dory, and a selection of fun featurettes.  We are given an indepth look at the complexities of animating new character Hank (Ed O’Neill) in The Octopus That Nearly Broke Pixar, and What Were We Talking About? focuses on the challenges of crafting a story built around a character with short-term memory loss.

The featurettes Animation & Acting and Creature Features both focus on the voice cast, Deep in the Kelp presents a look at a research trip to a real aquarium the animators took, and Casual Carpool is a brief bit involving Andrew Stanton driving around members of the cast.  There’s also a second disc that includes a bunch of deleted scenes that shed light on changes the story went through, the additional featurettes Skating & Sketching With Jason Deamer, which introduces us to the studio’s longtime story artist, and a fascinating look at Thomas Newman’s haunting score for the film in Dory’s Theme.

The bonus features are rounded out by a brief roundup of animation bloopers in Rough Day On the Reef, a collection of character antics in Fish Schticks, and an animated piece called Finding Nemo As Told By Emoji.  The disc also houses four trailers for the film from different countries, and a selection of four different Living Aquariums, which are essentially animated screensavers that all play for a couple of hours.  This is a solid selection of bonuses that are fun to go through, nicely complimenting what is already an excellent and highly recommended film.

Finding Dory is a Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment release.  It’s 97 minutes and rated G.

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