The Rock is ready to sing his way into your heart this Thanksgiving.
Are you ready to let him in?
In this Disney animated holiday adventure, Auli’i Cravalho
stars as Moana – the next in line to lead her Hawaiian tribe.
While life on their island has been idyllic, the future is starting to
look bleak as crops fail and fishermen struggle to bring back anything
To solve the dilemma, Moana wants to set sail into the ocean and push
the tribe’s boundaries, but Dad (Temuera Morrison), demands
that no one sail beyond the lagoon and reef (if you have ever seen a
movie, you can sense the tragic story explaining his reticence to be
emerging at any moment).
Yet, Moana has a mystical connection to the ocean and finds herself in
possession of a fabled treasure (of course she does, where would the
conflict come from otherwise?). If she can sail across the sea and
convince the demigod Maui (Dwayne “He’ll Always Be
The Rock To Me and You” Johnson) to return it to the rightful
owner, her people will live bountifully once more.
Will Moana have what it takes to battle the ocean and forces more
powerful than any she has ever known to save her people?
Will Maui screw it all up?
Moana is the prototypical Disney
animated family film, but that’s not always a bad thing.
Directors Don Hall, Chris Williams, John Musker and Ron Clements are
content to play it safe and deliver the formula.
We have plenty of musical numbers to fill time when the story is
The audience gets a dose of potty humor or silly antics from the
world’s most idiotic chicken when a quick laugh is necessary
to lighten the mood.
And, our heroine will find some way to persevere in the toughest times
to teach our little children in the audience (and the big ones who paid
for their tickets) how you can overcome any obstacle if you put your
heart, mind and soul into it (don’t chuckle, let the
optimistic and children among you keep believing for as long as they
Granted, these are nice lessons, but it isn’t anything
Writer Jared Bush is able to meld the comedic and dramatic elements to
the point where both sides are strong and help support each other, but
the plot gets a little too detail heavy for younger kids.
It’s nice to have a dense plot, but I am not sure how many in
the audience can keep up with several legendary tales, a group of
family members and a handful of mythical characters (we’re
just missing a partridge in a pear tree at this point). It’s
a crowded movie for one so light on plot.
In the end, you will have a good time, while Cravalho and Johnson share
wonderful chemistry and charm. No matter how far afield other elements
may go, these two keep the audience engaged.
Moana is rated PG for peril, some
scary images and brief thematic elements.