Another animated feature film crossed off the list: Moana. Or Vaiana as it is known in some part of Europe and Asia. And Oceania in Italy. In Italy the name change is likely due to a famous porn star named Moana. In the countries where it will be called Vaiana it seems to be because Moana is a registered brand, so trademark! But it is surprisingly hard to Google your way to an official answer to the name change.
Well, adventure awaits, so let’s get to it!
This movie is pretty generic in its messages and all around plot, but it is a solid message and plot, so who am I to argue. The movie is really beautiful and I especially enjoyed the animation in the scene with Maui singing “You’re Welcome”. The hand drawn animation of his tattoos and the texture when the scene shifts to the tapestry. It is beautiful.
And speaking of songs, the soundtrack is delightful. I’m a fan of Lin-Manuel Miranda, and you could clearly hear his influence in the songs, but it was not overpowering. The songs were really fun and just what songs in a Disney movie should be. There might not be a “Let It Go” in there, but they are still pretty catchy.
All in all a really fun movie, it doesn’t try anything groundbreaking, but knows what it is and succeeds as that. And I do love a good Girl-Goes-On-Adventure movie.
Now to the bullet point list!
- A+ casting. I am so glad that all the principal character are played by Polynesien. When the character is of another race and culture than white, so should the voice actor be. It makes the whole movie more authentic and representation is also super important behind the scenes of animation movies, not just on the screen.
- I loved that Moana is to be the next chief and that is just a fact that no one disputes.
- Alan Tudyk plays the dumb chicken and if we have to have animal sidekicks I prefer them to be mute. Alan Tudyk had been in the last five Disney films. That would be Moana, Zootopia, Big Hero 6, Frozen and Wreck-It Ralph.
- I wanted more of the Trickster Maui, but I guess that isn’t on par with a children’s movie. But, if you want a bit more Maui I recommend “Spirits: A Drunken Dive into Myths and Legends” and their Maui episode.
- I really liked Jemaine Clement as the giant crab, Tamatoa. And you, know The Rock is also pretty great.
- The coconut pirates were weird. Google tells me that they are called Kakamora. And that they are spirits in some Pacific islands. They live in trees and caves, are small – 15 cm to 125 cm, might like rain and eating people? Researching mythology late at night is not recommended.