(This review may contain spoilers).
This was the first movie my three-year-old nephew saw at the cinema. I’ve always liked family films, along with the myriad of other genres I enjoy, and this one wasn’t any different… though I could see some of the stereotypes previous viewers had picked up on in the movie.
While this movie was fairly light-hearted, I did like that there were some serious aspects to it as well. While Maui came across as a light-hearted, uncomplicated person at first, there were parts of his past that made it clear why he did the things he did… even though he did make a few mistakes. And I felt he treated Moana like she was expendable for a lot of the movie.
There were some really nice songs during this movie and it was good to see Moana’s relationships with her parents and grandmother. I liked how her grandmother gave her advice without telling her what to do… allowing her to make her own decisions.
It was good to see how Moana was drawn to the ocean, even as a young child, and to get answers as to why that was. While it was good to see she knew her own mind and what she wanted to do, and was clearly a strong female character, she also made mistakes and didn’t get everything right the first time… which I felt made her a more relatable character. And I also liked seeing how the ocean had its own personality. And the rooster was incredibly amusing. I would have liked to see the pig take on a bigger role, though, even though it was good to see something of a departure from the usual animal friends in Disney.
This movie was entertaining and my niece and nephew both enjoyed it; my niece to the point of wanting to listen to the soundtrack repeatedly. While I probably wouldn’t buy this on DVD when it comes out, I wouldn’t mind watching it again in the future.