Moana Review: Catch the Wave!
Disney’s Moana tells the story of Moana (Auli’i Cravalho), the daughter of the chief of the island of Motunui. She longs for the open ocean and traveling beyond the reef, but her father says her place is on the island. With a push from her grandmother, Moana pursues her dreams in an attempt to help the island. The island dying because long ago, the demi-God Maui stole the heart of Te Fiti and they need to restore it to save her home. Her grandmother tells her she was chosen by the ocean to help her people. In order to do so, she must find Maui (Dwayne Johnson), bring him to the island of Te Fiti and return the heart he once stole. On her journey, she encounters many problems, including finding out who she is and believing in herself.
Moana is such a wonderful film filled with inspirational messages for all audiences. The film is about a young girl finding her way and herself. She looks to others for help but finds it within herself to make the perilous journey and discover who she is. It is a great female character that is such a wonderful role model for young girls. Auli’i Cravalho is perfect as Moana and the new voice to inspire girls everywhere. Dwayne Johnson does a fantastic job as Maui. The two together work so well. The two animal characters are lots of fun too. You have Hei Hei the chicken and Pua, the little pig. They’re both cute, but I wish the pig were in the film more. The comedy is spot on and provides a lot of laughs for all ages.
The animation is top-notch. The beautiful colors and the water are so well done that it feels incredibly real. There is a great blend of a few different types of visual elements with 2D and 3D animation, neon colors and beautiful imagery. You can almost feel the wind in your hair. Speaking of hair, I can’t believe how realistic Moana’s hair looked in the film. It flowed and moved with the wind and sunshine It was just fantastic!
Of course, the music by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Opetaia Foa’i, and Mark Mancina was impeccable. The music does everything that music should do: it makes you cry, laugh, inspires emotion and enriches the story. It even has a touch of the old classic Disney songs that give you chills, all while being new and fresh. There are some incredible songs in there that I wouldn’t be surprised if we heard about come Oscar season.
Moana is everything we wish for in a Disney film. It has comedy, heart, drama and a true message of inspiration all capped off with catchy and beautifully crafted music. Moana is sure to be a Disney classic for years to come.