2016 #17 – Finding Dory (dir. Andrew Stanton)

“I remember it like it was yesterday. Of course, I don’t really remember yesterday all that well.” – Ellen DeGeneres as Dory in Finding Dory.

Finding Dory (2016)
Andrew Stanton
Starring: Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks, Hayden Rolence, Ed O’Neill, Diane Keaton, Eugene Levy, Kaitlin Olson, Ty Burrell, Idris Elba, Dominic West
Written By: Andrew Stanton, Victoria Strouse
Running Time: 97 minutes (1 hour, 37 minutes)
Genre(s): Adventure, Animation, Comedy, Family

Finding Nemo was one of my favorite films as a kid – it still is to this day. I firmly believe it is one of the greatest animated films ever made and I think it is a really important movie in Pixar’s filmography.

So, to say Finding Dory had some big shoes to fill would be a pretty large understatement.

Still, I knew this going into the movie so I lowered my expectations by a considerable amount. The bad news? Finding Dory is without a doubt middle-to-lower tier Pixar. The good news? Pixar is responsible for so many stunning, masterful works that this is not necessarily the worst thing in the world.

The plot for Finding Dory is very similar to Finding Nemo, and therefore it may feel a bit rehashed to some. I agree to a degree with that claim. Unlike Finding Nemo, which centered on a father looking for his son, Finding Dory focuses on an adult looking for her birth parents. It is a bit redundant after the first film, but I do believe there is a different dynamic going on.

And for all of the comedic charm that this movie has, it can be quite emotional as well. The resolution of whether or not Dory is able to find her parents is beautiful, sad and moving.

I believe the movie does a wonderful job at bringing together a wonderful cast of characters and the aquarium environment is an interesting change of pace that I think worked as a benefit for the film. Some of the ways Dory and the rest of the characters are able to outwit the human characters towards the end of the movie are a bit absurd though, even by animation standards.

Overall Finding Dory doesn’t really compare to Pixar’s best works such as Finding Nemo, The Incredibles or Ratatouille. However, it is a good film on its own – entertaining, sweet and moving. 4/5.

Oh – and Baby Dory is the cutest movie character I have ever seen. Ever!

2016 Personal Ballot (updates are in bold)

Best Picture
La La Land
Hell or High Water
Sing Street

Best Director
Barry Jenkins – Moonlight
Damien Chazelle – La La Land
David Mackenzie – Hell or High Water
Jon Favreau – The Jungle Book
John Carney – Sing Street

Best Actor in a Leading Role
1. Denzel Washington – Fences
2. Joel Edgerton – Loving
3. Viggo Mortensen – Captain Fantastic
4. Ryan Gosling – La La Land
5. Chris Pine – Hell or High Water

Best Actress in a Leading Role
1. Emma Stone – La La Land
2. Sally Field – Hello, My Name Is Doris
3. Rebecca Hall – Christine
4. Ruth Negga – Loving
5. Taraji P. Henson – Hidden Figures

Best Actor in a Supporting Role
1. Ashton Sanders – Moonlight
André Holland – Moonlight
Mahershala Ali – Moonlight
Ben Foster – Hell or High Water
5. Trevante Rhodes – Moonlight

Best Actress in a Supporting Role
1. Viola Davis – Fences
2. Janelle Monaé – Hidden Figures
3. Lucy Boynton – Sing Street
4. Naomie Harris – Moonlight
5. Octavia Spencer – Hidden Figures

Best Original Screenplay
1. Hell or High Water – Taylor Sheridan
2. Sing Street – Simon Carmody, John Carney
3. La La Land – Damien Chazelle
4. Hello, My Name Is Doris – Michael Showalter, Laura Terruso

Best Adapted Screenplay
1. Moonlight – Barry Jenkins, Tarell Alvin McCraney
Fences – August Wilson
3. Loving – Jeff Nichols
4. Hidden Figures – Theodore Melfi, Allison Schroeder
5. The Jungle Book – Justin Marks

Best Film Ensemble
1. Moonlight – Trevante Rhodes, Ashton Sanders, Alex Hibbert, André Holland, Jharrel Jerome, Janelle Monaé, Naomie Harris, Mahershala Ali
Hell or High Water – Jeff Bridges, Chris Pine, Ben Foster, Gil Birmingham, Marin Ireland, Katy Mixon, Dale Dickey, Kevin Rankin, Katy Mixon, Margaret Bowman
3. Fences – Denzel Washington, Viola Davis, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Jovan Adepo, Russell Hornsby, Mykelti Williamson, Saniyya Sidney
4. Hidden Figures – Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monaé, Kevin Costner, Kirsten Dunst, Jim Parsons, Glen Powell, Mahershala Ali, Aldis Hodge
5. Sing Street – Ferdia Walsh-Peelo, Lucy Boynton, Jack Reynor, Aidan Gillen, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Kelly Thornton, Don Wycherley, Ben Carolan, Mark McKenna, Percy Chamburuka, Conor Hamilton, Karl Rice, Ian Kenny

Best Original Score
1. La La Land – Justin Hurwitz
Moonlight – Nicholas Britell
3. Loving – David Wingo
4. The Jungle Book – John Debney
5. Hell or High Water – Nick Cave, Warren Ellis

Best Original Song
La La Land – “Audition” by Justin Hurwitz, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul
Sing Street – “Drive It Like You Stole It” by Gary Clark
3. La La Land – “City of Stars” by Justin Hurwitz, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul
4. Sing Street – “To Find You” by Gary Clark
La La Land – “Another Day of Sun” by Justin Hurwitz, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul

Best Production Design
1. Passengers – Guy Hendrix Dyas, Gene Serdena
2. La La Land – David Wasco, Sandy Reynolds-Wasco
3. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – Stuart Craig, James Hambidge, Anna Pinnock
4. Hidden Figures – Missy Parker, Wynn Thomas
5. Sing Street – Tamara Conboy, Alan MacDonald

Best Cinematography
1. La La Land – Linus Sandgren
2. Moonlight – James Laxton
3. Hell or High Water – Giles Nuttgens

Best Makeup and Hairstyling
1. Deadpool – Bill Corso
2. Sing Street – Barbara Conway, Sandra Kelly

Best Costume Design
1. Sing Street – Tiziana Corvisieri
2. La La Land – Mary Zophres
3. Hidden Figures – Renée Ehrlich Kalfus
4. Captain Fantastic – Courtney Hoffman
5. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – Colleen Atwood

Best Film Editing
1. La La Land – Tom Cross
2. Moonlight – Joi McMillon, Nat Sanders
3. Hell or High Water – Jake Roberts
4. The Jungle Book – Mark Livolsi
5. Sing Street – Andrew Marcus, Julian Ulrichs

Best Visual Effects
1. The Jungle Book – Andrew R. Jones, Robert Legato, Dan Lemmon, Adam Valdez
Passengers – Pete Dionne, Sebastien Gourdal, Erik Nordby
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – Tim Burke, Pablo Grillo, Christian Manz, David Watkins
4. Deadpool – Alex Burdett, Jonathan Rothbart, Ryan Tudhope, Alex Wang
5. Hell or High Water – Jeremy Cox, Scott Hastings, Daniel Holt, Michael Prawitz

2016 Ranked (updates are in bold)

1. Moonlight (dir. Barry Jenkins)
La La Land (dir. Damien Chazelle)
Hell or High Water (dir. David Mackenzie)
Sing Street (dir. John Carney)
Loving (dir. Jeff Nichols)
6. The Jungle Book (dir. Jon Favreau)
7. Fences (dir. Denzel Washington)
8. Hidden Figures (dir. Theodore Melfi)
9. Deadpool (dir. Tim Miller)
10. Finding Dory (dir. Andrew Stanton)
11. Hello, My Name Is Doris (dir. Michael Showalter)
12. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (dir. David Yates)
13. Christine (dir. Antonio Campos)
14. Captain Fantastic (dir. Matt Ross)
15. Passengers (dir. Morten Tyldum)
16. Sausage Party (dir. Greg Tiernan, Conrad Vernon)
17. The Girl on the Train (dir. Tate Taylor)


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