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September 20, 2012

It's easy to be Finding Nemo at Walt Disney World

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If you or your children enjoy Nemo and his ocean friends, Walt Disney World offers plenty of opportunities to visit his Big Blue World. And, with the recent theatrical release of the 3D version of the film, now is the perfect time to dive right in and continue to experience the joys of the film.

We are in the middle of the limited-engagement theater release of "Finding Nemo 3D." If your children, like mine, were too young to see this Disney-Pixar classic when it first was released in theaters in 2003, now is your time to experience this colorful marvel on the big screen. The 3D effects really enhance an already wonderful movie. (This version is expected to be released on Blu-ray and DVD on Dec. 4.)

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In support of the movie, Disney Publishing Worldwide has released two apps -- Finding Nemo: Storybook Deluxe and Finding Nemo Interactive Comic. In the storybook app, young readers will experience the story with a special set of effects, including underwater sounds, the ability to create bubbles and a Whale Chat with Dory. Like other Disney storybook apps, this one has different reading levels and allows kids to record their own voices reading the story. There also are new versions of kid favorites such as finger-painting pages, games and puzzles. Finding Nemo: Storybook Deluxe is $6.99 and is available on iPhones, iPads and iPod touches.

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Finding Nemo Interactive Comic is aimed at older kids, ages 7 to 12, because it's an advanced interactive graphic novel. It includes concept drawings by Disney Pixar artists who worked on the original film, sound effects and even step-by-step drawing lessons. Finding Nemo Interactive Comic is $1.99 and is available on iPhones, iPads and iPod touches, too.

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Planning a trip to Walt Disney World? There are several ways to visit with Nemo. The new Art of Animation Resort opened in May, allowing guests to feel like they have stepped into the movie. The Finding Nemo family suites are aptly themed and cleverly designed. From plastic coral chairs for the dining table to bathrooms fit for Bruce and friends to the school-of-fish artwork, every detail recalls "Finding Nemo." The Big Blue Pool, or main pool, has larger-than-life statues of many of the characters, and even offers music underwater, jellyfish figures that drip water, and a splash pad where Nemo's friends shoot water. In the restaurant and lobby, guests will find concept and landscape art from "Finding Nemo."

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At Epcot, The Seas with Nemo & Friends pavilion is the place to be. A ride by the same name takes guests on Marlin's journey to find his son as they travel under the sea in clam-mobiles. Much of the dark attraction projects the animated characters on the aquarium, but there also are some very cool effects, such as the moving jellyfish and riding the EAC with Crush. Outside the pavilion, guests will hear the sea gulls chirping "Mine! Mine! Mine!" and there is a great photo opportunity with statues of Nemo and friends.

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While inside The Seas pavilion, guests also can interact with the popular surfer sea turtle at Turtle Talk with Crush! This attraction uses 3D animation and allows Crush to talk back and forth with kids in the audience. During the 10-minute show, Crush tells jokes and performs some on-screen acrobatics.

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At Disney's Animal Kingdom, guests can experience a 30-minute Broadway-style show called "Finding Nemo - The Musical" at Theater in the Wild. This amazing performance showcases talented actors, singers, dancers and acrobats who use large, colorful puppets and animated backdrops to retell the story of "Finding Nemo." It also features the original song, "Big Blue World," which was written for this show and also can be heard at the end of The Sea with Nemo & Friends ride. "Finding Nemo -- The Musical" offers the only opportunity for guests to meet the Nemo characters; performers may bring their puppets back out to the stage after the performance and talk with guests.

When "Finding Nemo" was released in 2003, it was an immediate hit with filmgoers and critics alike. Its compelling storyline of parenthood resonated with family audiences, as did Nemo and Marlin's epic quest set against the timeless theme of loss and redemption. As with most all Pixar films, its visual beauty on the big screen was, and remains, unrivaled. Now, some nine years later, fans can continue to experience the film's characters and themes here in Orlando.

Just keep swimming. There's no telling what you might see.


September 15, 2012

New 'Finding Nemo' film will find new fans with 3D

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When I heard that the Disney Pixar classic "Finding Nemo" was being converted to 3D format, I wondered if anyone would really return to the theater and pay to see this animated movie again almost a decade after its release. I got my answer at a recent screening, though, when I actually overheard children say they'd never seen the film.

I was shocked to hear this, given how my elementary-age children have practically grown up watching the movie, one of the first feature-length films they were exposed to at an early age. We've watched the movie countless times on DVD in the car and at home. Most of their friends have, too, and if you've seen it you probably understand why. It is, simply, a beautiful film to watch and a well-told and humorous story to take in, whether you are 5 or 45.

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For all the laughs found in this humorous movie, it does touch on big life themes to which most any parent can relate. I found myself saddened during the familiar opening scene in which Nemo's mother dies, and Marlin's search for his lost son Nemo is filled with emotion familiar to any distraught parent. It's tough to be indifferent to a movie that is so engaging, no matter how many times you've seen it.

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Parents certainly can relate to Marlin, the overprotective and borderline OCD father, and kids can identify with Nemo and his need to rebel. Of course, forgetful Dory and cool surfer dude Crush the sea turtle certainly have won places in our hearts as well. Seeing them come to life on the big screen was a treat, I'll admit, for me and my son. When "Finding Nemo" was released in 2003, he was only a year old and certainly didn't go to see this in the theater.

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But what of the 3D effects? I loved the depth that was added to the undersea shots. The colors are brilliant and the details stand out, such as the texture of Marlin and Nemo's sea anemone home. Plus, it really feels like Nemo is swimming among the viewers. Throughout the movie, the underwater shots are some of the best -- with lifelike bubbles, a more menacing Bruce the shark and images formed by the school of fish. My 10-year-old son's favorite 3D scene was the one where Marlin helps Dory through the cloud of dangerous jellyfish.

For the most part, "Finding Nemo 3D" doesn't resort to the stereotypical gimmicks of having objects in the movie jump out into the audience, which is what my son expected after his multiple trips through the MuppetVision 3D attraction at Disney's Hollywood Studios. It's really the same movie you've come to love, only visually more compelling.

"Finding Nemo 3D" is preceded by a new, hilarious Toy Story Toon called "Partysaurus Rex." Meek Rex breaks out of his shell one night, makes friends with the bath toys and becomes the popular character at a nightclub he orchestrates. This third Toy Story Toon is really clever and will have audiences laughing out loud.

Here's a preview:

"Finding Nemo" will be released in Digital 3D™ for a limited theatrical engagement on Sept. 14, 2012, and will be released for the first time ever in high-definition Blu-ray™ and Blu-ray 3D™ on Dec. 4, 2012. Pre-Order now from Amazon:


DISCLAIMER: I was a guest at a screening of "Finding Nemo 3D." My opinions are my own, and this did not influence my review.

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About Finding Nemo 3D

This page contains an archive of all entries posted to A Mom and The Magic in the Finding Nemo 3D category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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