After Annabel Casey, a happy 12-year-old girl living with her endearing grandfather on the island of Bimini, whose best friend is a dolphin named Mitzy, is caught between a custody battle between her grandparents. Now, Annabel and Mateo, her new 13-year-old friend, must figure out how to save the day and prove that love conquers all with the help of Mitzy!
Nearly a decade after her parents were killed in a tragic accident, Annabel Coleridge is happily living with her paternal grandfather, Jonah Coleridge, aboard his fishing boat that is, when not in use for commercial fishing, moored to a private dock on a small tropical island. When her maternal grandparents begin working to gain full custody of Annabel, the plot thickens, and they will spare no expense to get what they want. Through corrupt law enforcement and deceit, Jonah Coleridge must fight to keep custody of Annabel, all while maintaining his small fishing business and looking after the young girl on his own.
The well thought out plot of Dolphin Island creates a brilliant and entertaining story. Its use of detail contributes to the tale and character development and the plot twists it employs keep viewers searching for more from the story. As the film develops, so do the characters, which allows the audience to feel as though they really get to know each character and their backstory.
It does take some time for the story to develop, however. The opening scenes leave viewers unsure where the plot is going. Some of the acting is dramatic and unrealistic, but entertaining, nonetheless. A few scenes depict dancing and music that seems out of place with the rest of the film and some characters do not seem to fit the plot. For example, viewers are initially not given much back story to where Annabel’s maternal grandparents are from—just a brief mention of visiting New York and their apparently polished appearance. The lawyer, Mr. Carbunkle, is deceitful and menacing—in fact, a lawyer with his character seems to have no place on such a small island. As a whole, while viewers are eventually given the information that they need to conclude the story, it takes some time for it to come out and many of the characters (and their personalities) seem wildly out of place for the setting they have created in Dolphin Island.
The biggest drawback of Dolphin Island is that the audio is not meshed well. For example, if listening to the audio with headphones, viewers must use both earbuds in order to hear the dialogue as well as the background music at the same time. In some scenes, audio is completely cut off to indicate muted conversations which not only sounds unrealistic, but also is very abrupt. This makes some parts of the film difficult to understand, as the spotty audio is distracting.
Overall, Dolphin Island is a heartwarming film that leaves viewers happy with its conclusion. The friendly and relatable characters create an atmosphere of accountability—especially for Mr. Carbunkle, Annabel’s friend, Mateo, and Annabel’s maternal grandparents. Its unpredictable plot twists, overall character development and improvement, and loving family dynamic between grandfather and granddaughter make Dolphin Island a great film to enjoy with the family.
Dolphin Island is Dove-approved for All Ages.
The Dove Take:
Dolphin Island, a heartwarming tale of love and accountability, will be entertaining for the whole family.