Moana starts with a legend. In ancient times, the ancient shape-shifting demigod Maui stole the mystical heart of the island goddess Te Fiti. Then the lava demon Te Ka attacked, sending the heart into the ocean, along with Maui's magical fishhook that allows him to change into different animals. A darkness also spread from where the theft took place, causing animals to die and crops to fail.
Moana was chosen by the sea, meaning the ocean sometimes helps her. In no time at all she finds Maui (Dwayne Johnson), who's been stranded on an island. He's pretty arrogant (claiming he gave humanity almost all of its benefits) and condescending, but agrees to help Moana -- after they retrieve his magic fishhook -- for the fame. Along the way they face coconut pirates (meaning sentient and evil coconuts), the glittering giant crab Tamatoa (Jermaine Clement) and his realm of monsters, and finally the lava demon Te Ka.
Reviewed by James Lynch