Dory, the lovable amnesiac blue tang from Finding Nemo, gets her own origin story in Finding Dory. Separated from her parents as a young fish, she’s spent her life wondering what she was trying to remember. A few small events trigger her memory, and she is suddenly desperate to find the parents she left behind.
As in Finding Nemo, the plot requires traversing the ocean into unknown places. Dory, Nemo, and Marlin encounter various creatures along the way. While some of this seems like a repeat of the original Nemo story, new characters and experiences keep it fresh and the glorious animation brings it to glowing life. Viewers even find out how it is that Dory knows so many facts and can speak whale.
Finding Dory, like Finding Nemo, gently makes clear that everyone has flaws and imperfections, and that those seeming weaknesses can be the source of unexpected strengths. Nemo doesn’t let his malformed fin hold him back. Marlin’s uptight and worrying nature makes him a good planner. Dory’s short-term memory problems make her open to less obvious solutions. An aquarium they encounter holds many creatures that have been sick or injured, and this setting offers even more characters with particular disabilities that don’t hold them back from moving on and helping Dory.
Finding Dory does not eclipse its predecessor, but it beautifully adds to and rounds out the original story with a fun and warmhearted tale. (Disney/Pixar)