Finding Nemo� I thought they never would.
Breathing is an amazing thing; you do it upwards of twenty thousand times in a day, but you seldom have to think about it. Likewise, running up and down stairs - most people can do that without thinking about the millions of individual commands their brain has to send to their muscles to make them work in the correct sequence to avoid you falling flat on your face.
When you think about these things, they�re incredible and awe-inspiring, but perhaps the most impressive thing about them is that you can do them without thinking about them. You can take them for granted.
Pixar animated movies have become like breathing. You can watch without getting sidetracked by the standard of the animation. This is both good and bad. It�s good because, if you�re me, you get to follow the story at a first viewing rather than get lost in how impressive the detail on the shark�s upper lip is (very). It�s bad because Finding Nemo doesn�t have much of a story to follow.
Before I get all picky, I should point out that I enjoyed it immensely and laughed often. The animation is rich, luxurious and funny, and sometimes dark and scary (really). It�s no Shrek, but it�s a nice film all the same.
And I know it�s a film for kids � I wasn�t expecting Nemo to reveal at the end that he�d been faking his withered fin throughout and that in fact he was Kaiser Sose � but I expected more than the old character-gets-in-trouble-then-gets-out-of-it-again trick repeated over and over throughout. If I�d wanted that, I could have gone to see Harry Potter.
The story rambles on with a series of near-tragedies that become infuriating instead of engaging. Maybe it�s just that now I�m old, and I know that with Disney it will always turn out well in the end, or maybe they just play that �It�s going to be a disaster! Oh no, wait, it�s fine� card too much.
These animated movies that work for kids and for adults are a tricky business. Making them sugar-coated enough for the kids makes them not so delicious for the grown-ups, but making them interesting enough for the adults runs the risk of boring the children. It�s a tightrope, and one I�m not sure Finding Nemo doesn�t fall off a couple of times. The darker moments are really quite sinister, and the lighter moments border on puke inspiring.
Admittedly, I have that Spielberg-induced fear of all things water related that I imagine many people my age (who were allowed to watch Jaws far too young) suffer from � but still, it�s a cartoon! I shouldn�t feel the need to pretend to be frightened to cover up the fact that I actually am. I also have an exaggerated cynicism that I find hard to keep in check when baby fish tells daddy fish he loves him in front of his whole school � like the squids wouldn�t kick the shit out of him for that!
I think the film fell between two stools � too scary in parts for the kids, too irritating a plot with too sweet an ending for the adults. Go and see it if you haven�t already � it might not sound that way, but I did enjoy it a lot. It has lots of good bits� and at no point does anyone even vaguely hint at adopting a talking mouse instead of a child.
Sorry these posts keep turning into inch hogging rants, Mish. I�ll work on being more concise.