*This article was originally published on HerCampus Western Ontario*
I’m a sucker for Disney movies. Growing up I would beg to go to the theatre to see the newest one. As I’ve gotten older I’ve realized how problematic these movies can be, and I think a lot of people have too. But this means that Disney has been trying harder to create more diverse movies. Disney’s most recent release is Moana, the first polynesian princess that Disney has ever created! Definite diversity from traditional Disney.
This movie follows Moana as she goes on a voyage to help return a sacred stone to a far away island. This will help the sea and islands, since on her own island food is growing scarce. She goes on her mission with the demigod Maui, who’s played by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, and they make a great duo.
The best part of the movie? The music! Lin-Manuel Miranda( yes the man who created the iconic Hamilton) wrote the songs for the movie. The songs were all very catchy and upbeat.
One of the other reasons I found the movie so charming was that the characters would put their hair up when they needed to. It seems that a Disney princesses hair is always perfect, no matter what. Even Ariel under the sea had no problem with her hair getting in her face. The thick and flowing princess hair doesn’t seem to get in the way. It was charming to see a movie that shows the realistic side of hair—even if even their buns were always on point!
Every princess seems to have a prince; however, this was not the case with Moana. This princess is on a quest to help her village, and there are no romantic entanglements along the way. There’s nothing quite as satisfying as realizing that a princess can be the saviour, and still not need a love interest at all. Although she does have a male counterpart she’s the moral backbone and she’s the one that really saves the day.
I found this inspiring, and a great way for young girls to see the next generation of princesses. While the classics are the classics, it’s good to look ahead and see that we can have a wide variety of princesses for young girls to aspire to be like.
If you’ve turned your back on Disney movies because of these problems, give Moana a try. There are a lot of important changes to what we see as classic Disney. Plus it’s a lot of fun!