Finding Nemo 3D
Review by Paul Preston
For those of you living under a coral for the last decade, “Finding Nemo” is a computer-animated adventure about a father’s search for his son, a little clownfish who was scooped up by people who sell fish for aquariums. While the clownfish tries to escape the fish tank in a dentist’s office, the Father tries to find the child, getting in many adventures along the way and befriending a Royal Tang fish voiced by Ellen DeGeneres.
This is one of the great movies of the 2000s. I’m the first to get cynical when it comes to 3D re-issues, reboots, remakes and all that. But Pixar movies are timeless, and I think should be back in theaters every five years or so, 3D or not. But with the movie theater chains smelling what NetFlix is cooking, they’re all about adding extra value to your movie-going experience to get you up off the couch and into the theater. Sadly, that also adds surcharges to your ticket price. But if the “Star Wars” prequels didn’t do it for you, the Pixar catalogue should, and “Nemo” will be followed by a 3D re-release this Christmas of “Monsters, Inc.”, which in itself is preceeding the release next year of the prequel, “Monsters University”. Pixar’s been very busy.
Overall, 3D animated films, I believe, convert to 3D better than live action films originally shot in 2D, and of all the Pixar films, this one lends itself best to 3D conversion. First of all, the undersea world created here always had depth to it, with every image brimming with sea creatures and plant life, as well as beams of sunlight breaking through the surface and illuminating particles in the water, and to see that detail given the depth of third-dimensional viewing is pretty impressive. I suggest the biggest screen you can find.
As with the best Pixar films, director Andrew Stanton, who also made “Wall-E”, evokes real human emotion at the top of the film (and these are fish!). When Marlin first loses his family, except for Nemo, and then loses Nemo in the vast ocean, the film isn’t afraid to show the fear and the loss. Draws you right in, and right when it could be too much, Dori comes along with her short term memory bits and delivers the laughs. Like the best Pixar movies, there’s great balance in story elements.
There’s a great voice cast on display here, outside of Degeneres. One of my favorite actors and comedians of all time, Albert Brooks, does fantastic work as Marlin. I knew he could drop a one-liner, but he’s equally good at being heartfelt and desperate and fatherly. Good on him, a fan for life. And Nemo ends up in an aquarium that feels like it’s out of a WWII POW movie, and Willem Dafoe brings the right amount of gravitas to the escape plans the fish make to get out their situation.
And, as ever, the trademark Pixar brilliance is on display in the animation. Every detail meticulously cared for. Even though they have big, goofy, human-like faces, attention has been paid to the authenticity with which every sea creature, bird and crustacean behaves, down the swirling of fish fins to determine the direction they swim. You can really take for granted how much they’ve made “astonishingly impressive” look routine.
I’ve said this before, but nobody does Rated G better than Pixar. G stands for General Audiences. I suppose if G meant just for kids, it’d be rated K or something. But G originally meant the film’s for everybody, and Stanton and his team of writers and animators have made an Oscar winner here that really can be enjoyed by all.
Directed by: Andrew Stanton
Release Date: September 14, 2012
Run Time: 100 Minutes
Distributor: Pixar Studios/The Walt Disney Co.