It’s been fifteen years since Disney have been nominated for an Academy Award in two separate feature films in the same year. Moana has just been nominated for Best Original Song (How Far I’ll Go). With the likes of Frozen and Brave, there seems to be a growing trend to have female leads, and this one isn’t a princess, oh no, she’s fierce, feisty and adventurous.
The film follows the story of Moana (Auli’i Cravalho) who’s father is the chief of a Polynesian tribe. From the very start, she was different, listening to stories recited by her grandmother, made her dream of exploring the sea as other kids her age were terrified. Her father Tui Waialiki (Temuera Morrison) is very aware of her daring attitude and as she grows up on the island he tries to make sure she would never want to leave. Little does he know that she was chosen by the ocean for a very special task, one that would mean travelling many miles beyond the reef.
As tragedy sweeps over the island, killing the fruit and leaving the sea without fish to catch – Moana decides to take matters into her own hand, after her grandmother speaks of her destiny. She sets off with the heart of Te-Feti (a mysterious relic) without any sailing knowledge and with her little pet chicken that provides light comic relief throughout. Her quest meets the first obstacle: a typhoon that rocks her small sailboat over and her unconscious. She wakes up on a strange island where she meets Maui (Dwayne Johnson) who is a legendary demigod. After a series of failed attempts, she finally convinces him to help her to return the heart of Te-Feti (Goddess) back to her.
With the eye-popping and pleasing visuals, you are relaxed into the extraordinary tale with a constant stream of funny jokes and catchy songs. This family film is a breath of fresh ocean air that offers an insight into a different culture that we might not have been aware of. We get to know the dynamic characters and get to love them in return as they flair on screen with splashing personality. This action packed success, tastes good like a Pina colada on a hot sunny day.