If you want to attract an honorable lady, be an honorable man.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Finding Nemo: Review

This is a bit of a throwback for all you Pixar fans. I just saw it the other day, and let me tell you right now.......
Oh whoops, getting a bit ahead of myself. First, the plot.
Nemo is a slightly rebellious clownfish, the only son of Marlin the clownfish. Having his wife and all his other kids wiped out by a Barracuda, Marlin is very protective of Nemo, who of course, hates it. Through being disobedient, Nemo is captured by divers and carried away, and Marlin has to conquer his fear of the open ocean to go in search for him.
 After many adventures with sharks, minefields, whales, turtles, anglerfish and more, he arrives with the help of a friendly pelican where Nemo is being held, only to find him dead - or so he thinks. Heartbroken, Marlin heads home, only to be stopped by his son who meets him, not dead, and escaped through the sacrifice of a friend. After one last escapade escaping fishers off the coast, they make it safely home.
The worldview:
They didn't even try to hide the message of this movie. It was so blatant, sometimes it seems they could have used more tact to get their point across. Marlin is way too protective of Nemo, which is what makes him rebellious, ( or that's what they want you to believe) and that protectiveness is shown to be bad in every one of them. This stems from the fact that Marlin is just plain scared of anything he doesn't know to be safe. He doesn't want to go into the big ocean, because its dangerous. He doesn't want to ask fish that look unsafe for directions. He doesn't want to go to the party with the shark because he thinks its not safe (don't blame him there). He doesn't swim into the dark chasm because he is scared. He doesn't want to hop into the pelicans mouth who is trying to save him because he thinks its dumb.

The list goes on, and Marlin is shown over and over again to be scared of the big ocean, and over and over again he is shown to be wrong.
Then there is Dori.
Dori, the ding-bat fish who can't remember what she just said. The fish who can read English and talk whale. She, on the other hand, isn't scared of anything, but its because she is so naive and plain not-smart. She want's to go to the party with the sharks, and makes Marlin go. She wants to ask fish for directions along the way and makes Marlin do it. She wants to let go from hanging on in the whales mouth, and convinces Marlin to do so. She isn't scared of the dark chasm and drags Marlin along anyway.
The message is plain, and is spelled out over and over again. Parents are too protective of their kids and need to let them do their own thing. They need to "let go, even though they don't know if something bad will happen". Girls, even if they are dumb, are braver than boys, even though the boys are played up to be a little more logical, even though they are wrong. Either that or they are just plain obsessed with how cool they are. Kids are smarter than their parents, and if the parents had listened before, would have let them do what they want and everything would have been ok. The parents need to just believe in their kids ability to do right and make good decisions for themselves.
Crummy message, and its right in your face.
That's the part I was going to say before when I got ahead of myself. I am NOT impressed with the message in this movie.
The Good:
There is a very good overall theme that runs through the whole movie of sacrificing your own wishes and safety for the good or lives of others. Marlin overcomes his fear of everything along the way, all to rescue his beloved son. An incredible demonstration of self sacrifice for those you love. All along the way, Marlin meets everything he swore he would never meet, and is forced to deal with it and move on.
One of the fish Nemo gets stuck in a tank with is an old fish who wants desperately to get back to the open ocean, but when things go wrong, he is willing to put his dreams aside to keep Nemo out of danger.
 He even sacrifices himself to save Nemo from the evil little girl who would kill him, which would have ended in his death, if the Dentist hadn't come along and put him back in the tank. It is shown on clear ways how a hero sacrifices himself to do what needs to be done, despite the consequences to himself.
Nemo, even though he is scared to death after the escape plan was botched, tries again later on his own to help save the rest of the fish in the tank.
A nice theme overall that is rare in movies.
The graphics are INCREDIBLE. This movie came out in 2003, and is easily on par with most modern Disney and DreamWorks Films. But from what I hear, all Pixar's are like that. :)
The Bad:
A few moments of crude humor, and the absolutely horrible worldview .Marlin, after the whole adventure is over, sends Nemo BACK to school, where all the trouble originally started. Seems to me that's the last thing I would want to do.
The sharks in the movie are trying to overcome the bad habit of eating fish, and gather together in meetings to help each-other overcome this awful trait. A bit of a vegetarian anti-eat-meat twist there, which is obviously baloney.
The reason I don't think much of the movie is because the message is so obvious, you get watch the movie and ignore that part. It's so integrated with the movie, you can't watch it without a bad taste in your mouth of the message afterwards.
The message is so overwhelming, its hard to watch the movie and just ignore it. Some movies you can ignore the bad stuff and get good out of the rest, but in this movie the theme is so obvious its hard to get around, making it less enjoyable.
Overall rating: 2.5 stars. It would have been higher if the message was a little more ignorable.         

1 comment:

  1. Right on, as usual. You'd think Marlin would have learned to homeschool.......


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