Disney’s “Moana” is Your Family’s Island Holiday Getaway
posted by: Gretchen
Disney Animation’s Thanksgiving gift to your family is a huge platter of all of the above, dressed with catchy, clever songs and jaw-dropping animation. “Moana” hits theaters today like a choice wave. “Moana” is a beautifully crafted family movie that transports and immerses viewers in a fresh story. It’s likely you and your family aren’t experts in Pacific Islander history and tradition so the adventure that unfolds isn’t tired or rehashed.
In fact, “Moana” revels in poking a bit of fun at the Disney Princess tradition even as they set another fascinating female hero upon a journey. Auli’i Cravalho capably voices Moana’s broad range of emotion and experience, from unsure girl to brave leader. Through songs and humorous bits to the height of battle, Cravalho creates a believably determined Moana who is guaranteed to make you see the whole princess craze in a whole new way. Of course, there are show-stopping soaring songs (co-written by “Hamilton’s” Lin-Manuel Miranda) we have come to expect, especially when belted out by a female lead. Is “How Far I’ll Go” the new “Let it Go”?
Minor characters aren’t afterthoughts or springboards for the main characters. They are fleshed out and entertaining, too. Jemaine Clement of “Flight of the Conchords” fame voices the bizarre and almost indescribable Tamatoa, a very large crustacean with very large greed and an equally bizarre song called “Shiny”. As the latest Disney crab, he’s no Sebastian. Make sure you stay through the credits to get one more glimpse of this slice of delightfully weird.