On the mythical and mystical island of Motuni in the South Pacific lives the titular Moana (delightful newcomer Cravalho), daughter of the tribal chief and last in a long line of navigators. Her family have long since abandoned their fabled oceanic adventuring, but with encouragement from her grandma (House), the teenage Moana sets off to sea in search of a mysterious island, accompanied by a spiky demigod (Johnson) and a pet rooster. In their first digital animation – which involved much specially written software – and with a starry voice cast including actors with Pacific island roots, legendary Disney directors Clements and Musker (Aladdin, The Little Mermaid) have created a visually stunning work, adding music and humour to the tale of an unlikely but endearing friendship.
A joyous tale of a Polynesian teenager’s quest to save her homeland, which boasts eye-watering visuals, earworm songs and heart-swelling messages about respect for the past and hopes for the future. ★★★★