Moana Movie Review


by Kelsey Lamb

If you have not seen Disney’s “Moana”, I don’t know where you have been for the last month. The hype for this movie is very well deserved. If you’re in the mood for an adventure story with catchy music, this is definitely the movie for you. One of the most interesting things about this movie is they have used a Hawaiian culture, rather than a European culture, for their movie. This change is very refreshing and puts light on a culture not seen in many popular cartoons made today.

The movie is about a girl, named Moana, who is the cheif’s daughter. Because of this she has a lot of responsibilities. While she doesn’t want to leave all of her duties, she wants to travel past the reef to the ocean. The ocean is, however, forbidden because of all of the monsters that inhabit is. She is soon able to because of the discovery that her island is dying, and she must find Maui, a demi-god, take him to the island of Tafiti, and make him return the island’s heart. The story is based off of South Pacific legends

Casting is everything in a movie. If you have a bad cast, it’s hard to pull off a good movie. The movie’s casting team wanted a real Hawaiian girl to play Moana, so after many auditions they chose 16-year old Auli’i Cravalho. She is the youngest actress to play a Disney character, and she did an excellent job. Her singing voice is beautiful and she is very convincing with her emotions. I was pleasantly surprised with her performance. The voice of Maui was played by Dwayne Johnson, or “The Rock”. He, of course, did amazing at his part. Those two complimented on another greatly and made their characters much more believable.

Now lets talk about the music. The composers for the music was Tony award winner Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mark Mancina, known for his work in “Brother Bear” and “The Lion King”, and Opetaia Foa’i, a famous Samoan singer, so naturally the music was amazing. These three composers made for great diversity in the movie’s music. One brings the fun comedy relief, another brings the inspiring heroine songs, and the last brings the cultural songs, singing a couple songs in the Tokelauan language. These songs seem impossible to get out of your head. The good news is the songs are so good you don’t want them to get out of your head.