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Moana: My Most Anticipated Disney Movie of 2016

Source: http://movies.disney.com/moana

In honor of the imagineer behind Moana coming to UCI, (thanks  ASUCI!) I decided to voice my excitement. Here are the top five reasons why Moana is one of my most anticipated releases this year.

1. The story is set in Polynesia.

The story/musical follows Moana (voiced by new-comer Auli’i Cravalho), an adventurous 16 year old, who teams up with Maui (voiced by Dwayne Johnson), a powerful demi-god,  to sail across the ocean to find a long lost island and save her people .

The directors of the movie definitely did their research on Polynesian history and culture. John Musker, one of the directors of the film, explained to Huffington Post their research behind the film. “So Ron and I developed this very simple storyline. And John being John, he said ‘I love this arena. I love the bare bones of the story you’ve got. But this really begs for research. On the ground research.’ So we were forced, as it were, to go to the South Seas two years ago. We’ve gone twice now. Two big research trips. And those trips have been revelatory and kind of life-changing in a way.”

Source: ohmy.disney.com

2. The cast of characters look awesome.

Moana is definitely not the stereotypical Disney princess. According to Time, she could even be the “ultimate anti-princess.” The movie doesn’t have a love interest, so it’s not your typical Disney princess movie. But Moana isn’t the only amazing character. We have a full cast, from your token Disney animal sidekicks to a demi-god, to an ocean. That’s right, the ocean is a character and it looks so cool in this clip below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ljik3zsGNF4  (source: comicbook.com)

3. The directors and the cast know their stuff.

John Musker and Ron Clements are the main directors for the film. They directed Aladdin, Princess and the Frog, Hercules, and the Little Mermaid. So needless to say, they know all about how to make a good Disney film. Don Hall and Chris Williams are also co-directors of the film and they previously directed Big Hero 6. Also on board this cast is Jared bush, who was one of the writers for Zootopia. No big deal or anything.

4. The music is by Lin-Manuel Miranda, AKA the guy who wrote Hamilton.

Lin-Manuel Miranda teams up with Opetaia Foa’i  and Mark Mancina to write the music for Moana. I’m especially excited about this because, for those who don’t know Lin-Manuel Miranda wrote the hit broadway musical Hamilton. And for those who don’t know what Hamilton is, it’s a hip-hop musical behind the life of Alexander Hamilton. Crazy, I know, but it’s good..trust me.

Here’s the time he performed with his Hamilton cast at the Grammy’s – http://www.theverge.com/2016/2/15/11010890/hamilton-lin-manuel-miranda-grammys-2016

And the time he freestyled on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.


We already got one song sung by Alessia Cara released for the movie.


Needless to say I’m super excited to hear all the music in this movie.

5. This movie is gorgeous.

Cinematically speaking, this movie is beautiful.  According to moviepilot this movie is all CG with the exception of Maui’s tattoos. The artwork and the trailer makes me want to go to the beach.

 Watch the official trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKFuXETZUsI

Let’s be real, it’s the Walt Disney Animation Studio and the last Disney movie released this year was Zootopia. If Moana is half as great as Zootopia was, I’m expecting very good things.

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