Sandy Kenyon reviews 'Finding Dory'

NEW YORK, New York (WABC) -- It's been more than a dozen years since "Finding Nemo" earned a billion dollars, and Ellen DeGeneres has spent years lobbying for a sequel because she had so much fun playing a little blue fish named Dory. The star got her wish - and now there's an entire movie swimming around her story.

DeGeneres's voice is such a gift, and the way she uses it to breathe life into Dory is so funny and poignant that there's talk of nominating her for an Oscar.

Luckily, the blue tang fish who suffers from memory loss has plenty of help, including Ed O'Neill from ABC's "Modern Family," who voices an octopus who helps guide Dory.

Those in charge have chosen to stage much of the action in a California Marine Park, where the Pixar folks find the perfect balance between the search for Dory's parents and those laugh-out-loud moments when the creatures from the sea must deal with us humans. The search for Dory's parents ends with much hilarity.

The movie begins in the open ocean, with Albert Brooks back as Nemo's dad Marlin. The clown-fish, having found Nemo in the original movie more than a dozen years ago, now joins in the search for Dory's parents.

"Finding Dory" is ultimately about the search for self, and looking for her parents is all about learning who she is. And that makes this movie resonate long after you're done laughing and crying. It is that rare sequel that comes so close to the joys of the original, and the nation's critics would agree. This is the perfect movie for families to see together.

The movie comes from "Pixar," owned by the same parent company as WABC.

Related: Ed O'Neill talks voicing Hank the octopus in 'Finding Dory' null
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