Technically while this is not the only trailer Disney has released, this is the first time I have seen any promotional material for Moana. I mean I have caught glimpses before, but I kept myself from watching so I could write a “First Thoughts” post when the time was right. Now the time has come…wow that sounded more ominous then it was supposed to. Anyway on to my initial impressions of Moana.
What stood out to me when I was watching the trailer was the presence of the ocean. I mean there is water in almost every shot within this trailer and I am sure the same is true for the movie as well. I was impressed animation and how they made the ocean look look realistic and how its appearance changes depending on what is going on a particular scene. Just like Frozen’s focus was on snow and ice, Moana is going to be focused on water and the ocean. The only different the movie’s title is the main character’s name instead of a verb (or adjective) for freezing conditions.
And while we are on the subject Moana herself she appears to be an ordinary girl in extraordinary circumstances. Extraordinary in the sense that she goes on a hero quest to save her people by teaming up with the demigod Maui in order to prevent an oncoming disaster. Now as the trailer clarifies Maui is a shapeshifter, demigod of the wind and sea, and hero of men. He has great power, but seems to have a pretty sizable ego as well. Needless to say Moana is very brave not only in seeking him out but also in calling him out when he makes the wrong assumptions about her. Of course having the ocean for a friend also helps especially when the demigod of the wind and sea throws you off your boat.
This trailer while it gives a taste of what is to come, I am the first to say I am not entirely sure what it is. The story of Moana is based of Polynesian mythology from the Central and South Pacific Islands which the state of Hawaii is a part of, and I am not as familiar with those stories as others are. Whether I watch it in the theaters or wait for the DVD/download release it will be interesting to see the journey that Moana and Maui are going to take.