Disney Switches Up it’s Classic Narrative with Moana

Caroline Munnelly

The Walt Disney Company has recently released the newest movie Moana.  A movie about a free willed daughter of a chief who goes on an adventure to save the wellbeing of her island. Her adventure is also accompanied by the sarcastic and confident demigod, Maui. This movie is as refreshing as it is genius. Disney has often been criticized for having a lack of strong female characters and the constant need for a man to save the day. But, Disney seems to have gotten the message. Moana is a strong willed and intensely independent character, who relies on the support of her family and village rather than a love interest.

Appearances include Dwayne Johnson as the demigod Maui. It seems that this man really doesn’t have a lack of charisma or talent; this former wrestler brings his acting skills and also singing skills to life in this movie. Also, the movie introduces a new voice actor by the name of Auli’i Cravalho, who plays Moana. This 16 year old Hawaiian native truly represents the Polynesian culture. Many Disney movies have been bashed for being inaccurate and misrepresenting the cultures that they attempt to bring to life. However, his movie does not do this. Instead the animators and voice actors really tried to emerge themselves into the culture in an attempt to represent it authentically.

One of the extremely unique aspects of this movie is the music. The lyricist Lin Manuel Miranda wrote the majority of the songs. Miranda was the genius behind the musical Hamilton, including being the main actor. This movie was extremely refreshing and is a great movie for all ages. Disney truly made a movie that represented the Polynesian culture and had a touching story line. I thoroughly enjoyed it and believe that people should go out and see it.