Disney’s Latest Film Moana Will Make Your Heart Soar ~ By Guest Author Samantha Lucas
Despite declaring herself very firmly “Not a princess” during the film, Moana has easily become one of my favorite Disney Princesses.
The Synopsis, as found on Wikipedia, is as follows – On a mystic island in Polynesia, the 16-year-old strong-willed daughter of the chief of the tribe, Moana from Motunui Island, is chosen by the ocean itself to reunite the Heart of Tehiti. She sets sail in search of Maui, a legendary demigod and hopes to save her people.
I was invited to the press screening for Moana and let me say there isn’t anything I don’t love about this movie.This is a film about worth and fulfilling destiny, about believing in yourself and not giving up, despite the odds or the appearance of what you’re facing. It succeeded in all the places Frozen failed for me and I’m completely in love with it.
Moana is beautiful in spirit and brave of heart. She answers a calling on her soul and undertakes the daunting task of saving her people despite the fact it meant going against her parents, and especially her father’s wishes. I loved the way the movie handled the relationship between father and daughter, doing an excellent job of humanizing her parents and helping us understand why he was so determined to keep her from the ocean, while showing us a lineage of leaders and a history of a people who changed over time into something that was never meant for them to become.
Yes, of course, it is charming and funny in all the ways we’ve come to expect from Disney. The animal sidekicks are an adorable puppy-like pig named Pua and a dimwitted chicken named Hei-Hei, who I found absolutely loveable despite the poor chicken being as close to an inanimate object as you could think.
As we’re coming to see more and more, of late, there is no “bad guy” per se to fight against, no defining villain. It is a film about overcoming the obstacles we carry within.
One other nice thing, the 3D was used perfectly to add depth and dimension to scenes, rather than to shock us by throwing things at our faces.
This is, of course, yet another film in the new land we’ve come to where there is no prince or love interest, but in this film it very much works. Moana is not a heroine out to prove she doesn’t need a man, she’s simply a girl chosen for a destiny greater than she knew she was capable.
The relationship between Moana and Maui is fantastic because they come to respect and need one another as they share this journey, each having their own lessons to learn and obstacles to overcome along the way.
The demi-god Maui is a culture hero in both Polynesian and Hawaiian mythology. Although his origin story is tweaked and made a bit more kid-friendly for this Disney tale, he is an important figure in many of the island cultures.
Moana is entirely entertaining from beginning to end. What pushes this film over-the-top straight to my heart is the theme of someone having a calling on their heart or soul all of their life and the need to answer that call and that is the story of my own life so to see it played out in a Disney Princess was more than I had ever hoped to see.
I recommend this one wholeheartedly! Don’t miss Moana’s journey. Go with an open mind and heart and let yourself be inspired.
If you enjoyed my review and want more of my own Disney writing, which currently has a heavy focus on Disney World, please visit me at www.disneylovin.com
And one more thing, as is the case with all the best films, you do want to sit through the credits for your little treat at the end. 😉
(Side note from Krista: Thanks Samantha for attending the media preview with me! I am so glad you enjoyed the movie as much as I did!! )