Female roles in past Disney movies typically consisted of the girl who needed rescue from curses or girls who’s self-worth was proven by their ability to be able to make Princes or Guys in general fall in love with them. And while we may have come a far way from the days when Ariel is willing to lose her voice for a chance to be with Prince Eric or Cinderella needed a kiss from Prince Charming, there generally has still been some guy that’s in the picture either as a crush, or someone the Princess needs help from to accomplish their mission.
Which is exactly where Moana breaks the mold.
Sure there’ll be those of us who argue that it shouldn’t really matter if the character has a love interest or not, or maybe that this is another example of feminism taking over the world, but, in reality, this just seems like an awesome option. Not only in terms of giving the young girls a new role model who’s strong on her own to look up to, but also in that those Disney Princes were impossible to live up to and set unrealistic expectations on guys.
Which is why Moana is a great film for parents to bring their daughters to, and like most good cartoons, or at least in the Disney/Dreamworks/Pixar world, parents too will also be entertained, albeit, probably not necessarily in the way that most would expect as the sense of humor is clearly geared towards kids via a Chicken who’s not the sharpest tool in the shed and Maui’s interaction with his tattoos.
However, with a deeper storyline than what we typically get, Moana also happens to include a couple surprises that not only help propel the story forward, but help provide clarity to what’s happened in the story prior. Given the different levels all managing to connect seemlessly, even without the sense of humor, its still offers something for the adults as well.
Moana is in theaters nationwide today, November 23, 2016.
Main Photo: AULI‘I CRAVALHO lends her voice to the title character, MOANA, a teenager who dreams of becoming a master wayfinder. ©2016 Disney. All Rights Reserved.