REVIEW: Disney’s ‘Moana’ is a loveable, eye-popping and imaginative animation


Moana - Credit: Archant

Walt Disney Animation Studios bows out of 2016 with one of this year’s best pictures, the highly anticipated and loveable ‘Moana’.

The story, which centres on an adventurous, inquisitive teenager called Moana (faultlessly voiced by newcomer Auli‘i Cravalhowho) who sails out on a daring mission to save her people, is the closest Disney has come to re-producing the mass appeal and adoration of ‘Frozen’.

With infectious songs dotted throughout; you’ll be singing the chorus of ‘How Far I’ll Go’ for the next week at least; colourful, sweeping locations and loveable characters, its a fantasy world away from the cold outdoors that children and adults alike will enjoy getting lost in.

Although the protagonist’s sidekick is an idiotic chicken called Hai Hai, and former WWE wrestling superstar Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson voices an egotistical yet soft centred demigod named Maoui, it’s Grandma - the “crazy village lady” that we all know, who of course turns out to be as wise as her years - who steals every scene she’s in.

Her bond with Moana certainly pulls on the heartstrings; and the way it’s depicted on screen in the second half, without giving too much away, is both moving and magical.

That’s without mentioning evil pirate coconuts, a bling-loving underwater crab and a lava filled villain...

It’s all very fantastical, but ‘Moana’, like this year’s other smash animation, ‘Zootropolis’, conveys moral messages subtly without forcing them on the audience. This time it’s about following your heart and finding out who you really are.

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‘Moana’ is now showing at The Light Cinema in Wisbech. For screening times and to book, visit