The production design is great. Motunui and the Mother Island are beautiful, the Kakamora fortresses are stunning, and Lalotai is as spectacular as it is deadly. The cast is a great one, with one exception, and Dwayne Johnson steals the show. The songs are the most beautiful I\'ve heard from a Disney musical since Princess and The Frog, and the score is great. Personally though, I would have gone with John Powell as the composer. The animation is the best computer animation that Disney\'s done thus far, and the 2D animation is no slouch either. However, this blend is nowhere near as impressive as Treasure Planet\'s blend. That film still remains the directors\' magnum opus. Moana is sadly a big step down from it. As far as character designs go, I\'m not seeing any specific reason they absolutely had to go with CGI over hand-drawn animation. Moana herself is a pretty generic protagonist. Auli\'i Cravalho\'s singing is sublime, but her acting is just all right. I can\'t help but feel that one of the previous actresses was a better fit. This wouldn\'t be a problem if it wasn\'t for the fact that Maui is such a better-developed character. Pua would have been a better companion for Moana since he\'s an actual pet of hers, and a true friend. Maui\'s backstory would have been better shown through his tattoo\'s. He should have been a quarter-god: not enough deity to join the gods, but not human enough to be accepted by his people, and so he was cast out into the ocean, rescued by his goddess grandmother (or the Mother Island herself) and given his fish hook. Tamatoa steals the show for the few minutes he shows up, and that\'s it. He should have been Te Ka\'s second-in-command to make him a true villain instead of a mere obstacle. The Kakamora should have been her mooks. Te Ka herself should have had dialogue and given more complexity. She could have been a truly insane villain and given lines such as \"Te Ka? Is that who I am?\" And it\'s not like there\'s a shortage of actresses that would have been fitting for her. They should have add in forgiveness as a theme of the movie, and although the theme of identity isn\'t badly-handled, it is damaging when a previous film (KP 3) handles the theme so much better. They should have hired Terry Elliot & Ted Rosso as screenwriters instead of Jared Bush. I would have loved to have known how xenophobic Chief Tui is. They should have added a scene where someone from another island washes up on Motunui\'s shore. He could have mentioned \"the Taint\" and its spreading, which would have justified so much of the movie taking place in open water. Instead of an epic adventure we are just given an adventure. In the end, although it is a good movie it is far from the greatness we\'ve come to expect from masters of the Disney Renaissance. In fact, by the end of the movie, this feels like some sort of origin story, as if they\'re just setting up for a sequel. Personally, I would prefer another movie being a prequel entitled \"Maui.\"
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