Talking animals, man. The kids love ’em. They love ’em.
I have a dream job. What could be better than watching and talking about movies for a living? Nothing; the answer is nothing. But lately my job has been a lot less fun than normal, because the movies themselves have been a lot less fun. Quite frankly, this summer sucks.
An audience of children and their parents out for a day of family fun at a movie theater in California were horrified to watch the red-band trailer of Seth Rogen's Sausage Party film before the airing of Finding Dory.
It took 20 years for Roland Emmerich to deliver a sequel to Independence Day, a film that’s largely responsible for the modern summer blockbuster season. Unfortunately, it looks like most audiences didn’t think it was worth the wait. As predicted in recent weeks, Resurgence crash-landed in theaters with an underwhelming opening weekend that was no match for Pixar’s Finding Dory.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Finding Dory opened at number one at the box office this week and did enormous business, but the folks at Disney and Pixar must be breathing a sigh of relief. After all, last year’s The Good Dinosaur was the first film to come out of the venerable animation studio that could be considered a legitimate box office disappointment, especially since it came in the wake of the massively successful Inside Out. The massive opening weekend for the sequel to Finding Nemo repositions Pixar in its rightful place on the top of the animated movie food chain.
“I like that the title of your outlet has one of our characters’ names in it.” Those were the first words spoken by Andrew Stanton, director of Finding Nemo, WALL-E, and John Carter, as we start our phone interview about his newest creation, Finding Dory. And he’s right. By coincidence, ScreenCrush shares half a name with Crush, one of the scene-stealing sea turtles from both Nemo and Dory (voiced, as it turns out, by Stanton himself).
Like every other Pixar release, Finding Dory opens with a short film. This one is called “Piper”; it’s about a little bird learning to hunt for food among the scary ocean waves. It’s a terrific showcase for Pixar’s latest advancements in computer animation, which in recent years has taken on the qualities of great nature photography. The sunlight sparkles against the water, which ripples and flows with uncanny accuracy, and when the little bird kicks a pile of sand in a crab’s face you can practically count the individual grains.
There was a lot of initial skepticism about the idea of a Finding Nemo sequel. What are you gonna do? Have Nemo vanish again? How many times can a fish get lost?
We’ve seen the trailers. We’ve met several of Dory’s new aquatic co-stars. But now Pixar is backing things up just a bit to show us how Finding Dory made the leap from page to screen, with some gorgeous new concept art from the long-awaited sequel to Finding Nemo. The artwork primarily features Ellen DeGeneres’ lovably absent-minded Dory and Hank the octopus — a new character voiced by Ed O’Neill — as well as some landscapes and beautiful underwater scenes.
With another new Pixar movie comes the promise of another new Pixar short film, and their latest effort looks as ridiculously adorable and heart-melting as you could possibly hope. It also looks way cuter than Lava — not that it would take much for Pixar to deliver something better than Lava (and good luck getting that song out of your head now). The company has debuted the first image from Piper, the new short film that will probably make your heart grow three sizes when it premieres before Finding Dory.