With a 99 percent positive review score on Rotten Tomatoes, Pixar's 2003 children's movie Finding Nemo seems to be almost beyond improvement. That hasn't stopped Hollywood from trying with a new 3D version of the $850 million-grossing megahit, which arrives in theaters today in advance of a December Blu-Ray release. In a twist, the same critics who routinely criticize 3D conversion as a lazy cash-grab that adds almost nothing to a movie but a higher ticket price are saying that applying the strategy to Finding Nemo has made a great movie even greater. Has Pixar created an exception to the rule or is it just gilding the lily?
The 3D effects make Finding Nemo even better: Finding Nemo "is an ideal choice for a 3D re-release," says Nell Minow at the Chicago Sun-Times. The technicians behind Finding Nemo 3D's conversion have used the technology to enhance the story's "emotional experience," crafting scenes that capture "the bleakness of the ocean's overwhelming size and power" and the "claustrophobia of a small aquarium." No matter how many times they've re-watched Finding Nemo on DVD, audiences shouldn't miss the chance to see "this spectacularly beautiful film back on the big screen."
"Nemo resonates in 3D"
The 3D effects might be too effective: Last year, Disney dipped its toe into the 3D waters with re-releases of The Lion King and The Beauty and the Beast, but Finding Nemo 3D is easily "the best-looking of the bunch," says Amy Nicholson at BoxOffice.com. The ocean, which is all about "depth and space," is a perfect fit for 3D technology, which turns this already beautiful movie into "pure eye candy." But parents of sensitive children also have to contend with "the peril of 3D: What's scary is scarier." If you have young kids who've never seen Finding Nemo before, it's probably best to "prep them ahead with a 2D rental" before taking them to see it in theaters in 3D.
"Review: Finding Nemo 3D"
The 3D effects don't add much — but you should see Finding Nemo 3D in theaters anyway: You can take or leave the 3D glasses, says Stephen Whitty at the New Jersey Star-Ledger, but this mid-September re-release "couldn't come at a better time." The 3D technology unfortunately darkens the film's visuals, but it doesn't really matter. The real secret to Finding Nemo's success is its ability to appeal to children while offering parents a relatable story about "an overprotective father and a slightly frail son." For parents who have just "packed off their kids to kindergarten, high school, or, good heavens, college," this is "the perfect tale at the perfect time" — with or without 3D.
"Finding Nemo 3D review: Pixar Perfect"