Moana is the latest animation movie that is gobbling all the critical and commercial appreciation that's coming it's way. Last year, I think except The Good Dinosaur, all major animation movies by Hollywood did good business. Not surprising, because the general quality of the rendering is top class. Most movies had a solid premise and a charm that attracts kids, their target audience.
Ok, Sausage Party was an exception. It was an adult comedy and a sleeper hit of 2016. I saw that and felt it was hilarious for around half an hour, and then it turned repetitive and too derivative of movies that it was trying to parody. The Secret Life Of Pets, another animation movie that I watched was also too similar to past hits. Zootopia was a genuinely good movie which was a fresh breath of air.
Coming back to Moana, the Disney movie won't dissappoint kids. It is a fun ride that contains an inspirational strain. The characters are appealing and well portrayed by the voice actors. It's also a musical and the songs are impressive. It has a message about preserving nature subtly embedded into the story. It's a perfect movie to take the kids to.
My issue is the assembly line sensibility that it displays. The plot is very predictable and formula driven. Elements of it are assembled from several other movies. The movie is about a quest and the stakes are high. But it doesn't show onscreen. Even the resolution is very abrupt that any surprise it generates may turn to disappointment if you think of it afterwards.
Motives of the demigod played by The Rock is unexplainable in any regards even after inserting a feeble back story. Though his antics are fun to watch. The film makers' struggle to insert some payoffs by the climax has resulted in some really silly scenes that doesn't gel with the movie.
Moana is like a McDonald's burger. You know what you are going to get. There is no point in complaining as that's all you're going to get. No more, no less.