Moana – Directed by John Musker & Ron Clements
Genre – Children’s/Disney Classic
Excitable Rating – 8/10
(Disney gets its own genre right?!)
First of all, what an awesome addition to the Disney Princess line-up; I love Moana!
The film opens on a pacific island, where we meet completely adorable baby Moana (voiced by Auli’i Cravalho) playing near the sea. There’s even these cool water snake things, turns out the sea has a personality! Moana’s father, their people’s chief, is completely against anyone going beyond the reef which encircles the island – something which clashes with Moana’s very soul as she is completely enthralled with the idea of travelling the open ocean. (All told through song)
Enter kooky grandmother, here to tell you to follow your dreams no matter what anyone tells you and that tattoos look badass at any age! (Somewhat told through song)
Moana does eventually leave her island home in search of the demi-god Maui (voiced by Dwayne Johnson YES THE ROCK!!) the hero who is supposed to return the heart of Te Fiti (ancient spirit who is essentially the creator of all life) and stop evil from spreading across the world. Standard Disney fair.
It wouldn’t be a Disney film if it all didn’t work out in the end. What makes this film important and different is that it offers a view of a culture mainly alien for Western audiences, and as we know representation is SO important particularly in media aimed at children.
I loved this film, the music was beautiful, the animation was stunning and the characters were fun with lots of interesting injections of Pacific Islander cultures – many of which I will be looking up more about.
Hopefully Disney can continue to build upon diversity in its films, Moana is certainly a good start.
- PIG SIDEKICK – Little Pua, my only complaint is that this little chappy didn’t get more screen time.
- HeiHei – crazy chicken sidekick, generally hilarious
- Hermit Crab – I’D RATHER BE SHINYYY
- Messages about environmentalism and awareness
- LOTS OF ENCOURAGING YOUNG GIRLS TO BE BOLD AND FEARLESS YAY!
- Strong female lead showing a demi-god how its done
Thanks for reading
~ The Excitable Feminist