Moana presents an atypical heroine, with no prince and no crew to help her along; a girl after her own heart, trying to achieve her goals with her own abilities and leading the way to what she has made her life "mission".
She is the girl that everyone loves, the one that makes every woman proud and one who should exemplify every girl out there by telling us never to doubt ourselves in spite of the difficulties found along the way.
Moana's mission revolves around helping her village and restoring what once was a peaceful balance between voyagers and nature. To achieve her goal, she recruits the help of Maui, a demigod who is the reason why the balance was "disturbed" thousands of years ago.
The writers do a great job describing the evolution of this unlikely "friendship" between the two main characters as well as telling the viewer the story of Moana and her ancestors.
In addition to Moana and Maui as the main characters, I was especially captivated by Moana's grandma, who is undoubtedly her number one fan and main inspiration; I saw a lot of my own grandma in her and that's probably why I teared up every time she showed up during the movie... Disney always has a way to make me cry during movies! :)
The setting of the story is a beautiful island and the ocean that surrounds it; it's so pretty I almost want to move there! ;).
With this movie, Disney also goes back to its musical-ish roots with several catchy songs included throughout the movie, which make the pace of it "just right". Despite the music, captivating story and amazing character development, I think the movie did drag a little bit around the middle, but I'm sure the kids didn't notice and I'm probably just being too critical at this point.
I loved the animation, the music, the colors, the characters and the cute story so this one is a winner in my book and gets 4 out of 4 stars...
...and the short before it! Oh my God! Please get to the theater on time because the feature short film "Inner Workings" was probably the highlight of this movie...seriously! How adorable!!!