It was back in 2003 when Finding Nemo hit the big screen and it was the fifth feature film from Pixar. The studio had already enjoyed success with the likes of Toy Story and Monsters Inc., but this was to be their biggest and most successful film to date.
Finding Nemo saw Andrew Stanton return to the director's chair for his first feature since he co-directed A Bug's Life in 1998. Thirteen years on, Finding Nemo remains one of the jewels in Pixar's crown and is a film that has thrilled audiences of all ages.
Finding Nemo follows the comedic and momentous journey of an overly protective clownfish named Marlin (Brooks) and his son Nemo (Gould) -- who become separated in the Great Barrier Reef when Nemo is unexpectedly taken far from his ocean home and dumped into a fish tank in a dentist's office.
Buoyed by the companionship of Dory (DeGeneres), a friendly-but-forgetful Pacific regal blue tang, Marlin embarks on a dangerous trek and finds himself the unlikely hero of an epic effort to rescue his son -- who hatches a few daring plans of his own to return safely home.
Finding Nemo was another huge leap forward for Pixar as they created a truly magical underwater world. From start to finish, Finding Nemo is a beautiful looking that is as stunning today as it was back in 2003.
There's just something so magical about this movie - it's no wonder that it thrilled a generation of children. Nemo, Marlin, and Dory are three of Pixar's most loved and iconic characters. I have to admit, it has surprised me that it has taken this long to bring a sequel to the big screen.
While Albert Brooks and Alexander Gould give wonderfully touching performances as overbearing father Marlin and adventurous son Nemo, it is Ellen DeGeneres who really does steal the show as Dory. Her larger than life vocal performance brings wonderful humour and heart to the film - not to mention, it was a star-making performance.
I love the chemistry between Brooks and DeGeneres as their character's relationship brings home a heart-warming theme about the importance of friendship.
And heart is what Finding Nemo has in bucket loads. Yes, there are moments of great humour and the film looks terrific, but it is the quiet and intimate moments that pack the biggest emotional punch.
This is a film that does explore the importance of family and friendship, but it is also a film that looks at how a parent sometimes needs to let go. This is a film that will pull on your heartstring as much as it will make you laugh and marvel.
Finding Nemo was both a critical hit and a box office smash upon release; going on to gross over $936 million at the global box office.
It ended the year as the second highest grossing film - the first being The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. It remained the highest-grossing Pixar film until Toy Story 3 came along in 2010. While it may have lost that crown, it remains one of the most successful animated films of all time and an unforgettable moment of Pixar magic.
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