Review: Moana (and musings on the Animated Oscar)

It calls me.

I don't review the children's movies I see too often, but I had planned on seeing and reviewing Hacksaw Ridge and those plans got ruined so here we are.

Luckily, Moana is a wonderful animated film.. Moana (Auli'i Cravalho) is the daughter of the chief and has always been drawn to the sea. However no one ever leaves her island, they're realitively safe. But when their crops start dying and the fish run out, Moana takes a chance to leave her island and find the demigod Maui (Dwayne Johnson) who stole the heart of Te Fiti long ago and is responsible for the woes of her homeland. 

The Oscar race is interesting this year. We had a strong year for animation. Zootopia is rightfully the front runner at the moment. With foreign films like The Red Turtle and My Life as a Zucchini also likely to get in. That leaves a few other strong American releases. Kubo and the Two Strings, while lacking in story has the most stunning animation this year, I think they're sure to get in. I assumed the fifth spot would go to crowd favorite Finding Dory, but after seeing this, I'm not so sure. Moana certainly has it beat in the animation department. In fact, it might even rival Kubo at times. Story wise, I think Dory has the edge, but this story is still a good one. (better than Kubo's too) Cravalho's voice is lovely and I'm a huge sucker for The Rock. This guy has been electrifying screens (heh) since he was a wrestler and they're perfectly cast in their parts.

"How Far I'll Go" currently beat "Drive it Like You Stole it" as my favorite song from a family so far this year. I've had it in my head all day. Moana also has something that I'm going to try to mentally picture as a coping skill from now on: a screaming rooster. I've talked about how becoming a mother as turned me into a baby back bitch during movies. I had the water works set and ready to go during this, then they cut to a scene of the dumb rooster completely losing his shit. Perfect save! I loved that.

Grade: A

Memorable Quote: "That water is mischievous, I like how it misbehaves."  - Grandma Tala (Rachel House)


  1. So is this film like... the new Frozen?

  2. I thought that rooster was going to drive me crazy, but it was hilarious, and broke up those emotional scenes with perfect/terrible timing!
    I can't say thank you to my husband for anything right now...because he bursts into song with 'You're Welcome'!
    Great review, and the Oscars are definitely going to be interesting for this category!
    - Allie

    1. lol that's awesome! I thought the pig was going to have a bigger role from all the advertising, I was surprised that he was barely in the movie.

  3. Hopefully this is still playing in my theater this week, heard lots of good things about it and now I'm excited.

    1. The short in front of it is amusing too. Not as good as Piper before Dory though. I hope you like it!

  4. That f--king rooster. Dude totally won me over with his clutch save at the end.

    I'm sure I'll see this one again, but I really didn't think it was as good as everyone says. I mean, the bar is pretty high, you know? I thought this was typical excellent Disney. Somehow I expected something beyond that.

    But hey, this is coming from a guy who thought Frozen was merely okay (for the record, I liked Moana better) it's probably that I'm a gigantic asshole, really.

    1. Frozen is just "okay" lol. I don't hate Frozen but I think it's massively overrated, especially when it gets all this credit for being a girls anthem when Brave technically did the same thing.


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