Simply put, Moana is the most relatable and realistic princess that Disney has ever produced. Not only is she adventurous and brave and dedicated to her people, but she is also incredibly normal. She argues with her father, ties her hair up when she’s busy, and gets frustrated when things don’t go right. Rather than create some type of unattainably sweet and perfect princess, Disney have taken this opportunity to reinvent princesses perfect for the 21st century, going so far as to script Moana refusing the title of princess. I couldn’t be more thrilled.
Also, rather unusually for Disney, Moana is not romantically involved with any person throughout the film. It is not suggested once, despite the fact that she spends a large portion of her screen time travelling with a male companion. It’s so refreshing to see a story for young girls highlighting friendship as such an important aspect of life. Dwayne Johnson is hilariously funny as Maui, the immensely egotistical yet disheartened demigod, who accompanies Moana on her trip alongside HeiHei, the constantly confused chicken.
But perfect princess aside, the film itself is phenomenal.
As is always expected of a Disney film it is beautifully animated and the music can only be described as stunning and perfectly themed. The story itself is exciting and, from what I have researched, relatively accurate in terms of the source material, or as accurate as is realistic when considering the breadth of Polynesian culture. It is inspiring and heart-warming, reinforcing the positives of sustainable living and has achieved the almost miraculous act of introducing the pacific islands to mainstream animation.
As a lifelong Disney fan, I can honestly say that this is one of the most interesting and emotional films that Disney have produced in quite some considerable time.
Definitely add it to your to-watch list.