This post is not sponsored. All opinions are 100% my own. We did receive a pre-screening for the movie but this does not influence my opinions on this review.
This weekend we had the chance to visit Disney’s Polynesian to screen the new Disney film Moana. My son has been really excited to see it. He even made his own boat last week! I walked in unsure of what kind of movie we would get. I wanted something that gave me the same feeling I had when I left Frozen. I wanted that feeling that said, “This is going to be huge!” Guess what. It did and then some! After watching this INCREDIBLE movie I wanted to share 5 things kids can learn from Disney’s Moana. Make sure to read through to the end for some of the special things we found out at the pre-screening as well as a free educator’s guide!
5 Things Kids Can Learn from Disney’s Moana
The value of the land they live on
One of the strong themes in this movie is that the land we live on and the items we are using are valuable. It does it in such a beautiful way, though. When watching Happy Feet there was a very overpowering message of loving your planet that left me feeling a bit uncomfortable. However, with this movie, it is done in a much more beautiful way. You still walk away from the movie knowing the value of each thing and with the opportunity to talk more about these messages with your kids but it doesn’t leave a bad taste in the mouth. I really enjoyed the way that Disney handled this.
You are stronger than you know
In many Disney movies, there is a princess being rescued. However, with Disney’s Moana you have a completely different experience. Instead of focusing on the need to be rescued this movie gives a strong message that you are stronger than you know. Moana’s character has a lot of depth and you are able to watch her really struggle with who she is without a prince coming to the rescue. Without spoiling anything, I will tell you that there is a beautiful message here about finding your strength and overcoming difficult circumstances.
Things aren’t always what they seem
The creators of Moana do an incredible job of developing characters with some serious depth to them. While things look one way, they can change and be something completely different than you expected. I won’t spoil the movie but there is a really plot twist with one of the characters. This twist is a great teaching moment for parents. You will have the opportunity to discuss the fact that people aren’t always what we expect them to be but there can still be beauty there.
Your parents aren’t just being mean
My daughter actually asked that this one is included. She said that without spoiling things, it’s important to remember that sometimes your parents see more of the truth behind a situation than you do. It actually impressed me to hear her take this away from the story. I loved that they painted the parents in this story in a very realistic light. These Disney parents felt very relevant to me. I felt like I could easily be either the mom or the dad and I loved that my daughter saw that maybe not everything done is done with a malicious intent.
Sometimes you fail
In Disney’s Moana they do a great job of showing characters that don’t always get it right. Instead, there is a view of failure and what you are supposed to do when you fail or when you are wrong. I loved seeing the way that failure was handled in a healthy way. There were no cop outs or judgments but the movie still gave practical perspectives on handling failure. I think that this was such an important thing for Disney to tackle. I loved that the leading character wasn’t perfect and that was ok. It set a very realistic and relevant standard for kids.
A few special moments from the Moana Pre-Screening
Disney’s Moana will be doing meet and greets at Hollywood Studios starting in late November. We had the privilege of meeting her and I have to say I loved it! She is so sweet. I definitely recommend finding her in the parks.
The kids had an opportunity to interview Screen Writer Jared Bush for a moment.
R asked, “What was your favorite movie that you helped work on?”
Jared, “Honestly, I loved them all but I am excited for this one because it is a new demographic. Films like Zootopia take place in the world. This is completely different.”
C asked, “What was your favorite character?”
Jared, “I like Moana because it is a very fun, energetic, and sassy character. I like that about her. In my other movies, I really liked Judy Hopp from Zootopia.”
One of the things I loved most was watching Jared Bush amazed that he was standing there with Moana. He really reveled in the fact that this was a character he spent a lot of time on and that she was there with him.
He also shared with us that the young lady who plays Moana actually wasn’t chosen until the last day of casting. Her mom had a single line in the movie. Look for her when you hear “She’s really doing great.” I thought that was such a special addition.
Buy your Moana Tickets
Moana releases in theaters November 23, 2016. I highly recommend giving this movie a chance. I strongly believe this will be a very popular movie! Disney has outdone themselves with this one.
Don’t miss this printable Moana Educator’s Guide!
Disney has also put together a great free educator’s guide you won’t want to miss with 40 pages of Educational activities to go along with the movie!
Looking for more?