Hey guys! As you may have seen in my last post, my current obsession is Moana! I was reluctant to watch it for a long time and to be honest, I can’t even tell you why. Perhaps it was because in the back of my mind, I knew how obsessed I was going to get with it or perhaps it was because I didn’t want anything to trump Frozen (2012.) But let me tell you – in my opinion, it blows it out of the water. Get it?
But as within a lot of Disney films, there are deeper meanings behind their characters, behind their story lines and short little moments that you wouldn’t necessarily see first time watching. So, here are some of the ideas that I have either thought of myself or have seen and agree with!
- Moana wasn’t the first Chosen One from her family.
Whenever I see Chosen One, I think of Anakin. My boy. But I think this theory is pretty much set in stone even if it isn’t spelt out to the audience. We know from the start that Tala, Moana’s grandmother, has a higher wisdom and understanding than the rest of the seemingly small-minded village. She has a respect for the ocean that suggests that she has been deeply connected to it, just like Moana is. She is also the one to tell Moana all about the story of Maui and Tefiti which implies that she is setting her up for her own quest, especially as Moana is drawn to the ocean and chosen by the ocean moments after being told the story and passing the test of saving the sea turtle. We also see that Moana’s father was too ‘called’ to the ocean – even though in the flashback, it looks like he’s doing something that he shouldn’t be, he leaves in the dead of night just like Moana does. But he fails the mission as he is hit by the storm, just like Moana is when she tries to leave. Which leads me to my next theory.
2. The ocean is ‘straight up cooky-dooks’ because of the missing Tefiti.
I’m not sure if this one is canon or not, but I think a big reason why the ocean is so unreliable is the fact that Tefiti isn’t the same as she used to be. Even though the ocean seems to have its own entity and soul, it would surely work alongside nature and creation – aka Tefiti. So, I think when the ocean suddenly turns on Moana and tries to drown her and when it drowned her father’s best friend, it’s probably because it had its own Te Ka moment and started not being able to control itself. But, it’s only a theory as every time the ocean did something it shouldn’t, it was because it was driving the plot.
3. Tamatoa was the Genie’s previous master.
This one isn’t one that I’ve constructed myself but I’ve seen it mentioned a few times and the more I think about it, the more I believe it. First of all – the mention of how Tamatoa was a ‘drab little crab’ once and how something changed him. The fact that he is now a giant crab juxtaposes with Jafar’s need for grandeur in how he had to be a giant snake, etc. There’s also the fact that among Tamatoa’s treasure-shell, the Genie’s lamp is there. There’s a few more references to Aladdin in Moana, too – ‘diamond in the rough’ in Tamatoa’s song and also the magic carpet makes an appearance during the song Where You Are.
4. Tamatoa was banished to the Realm of Monsters.
Even though I think that the Realm of Monsters does derive from the lore of the Polynesian people, I think that a very real factor of Tamatoa being there is due to the fact that he was banished there. If he was granted his ‘big-ness’ by either the gods or some other power, then it could be possible that he didn’t behave as he should have – or even got caught trying to steal the heart of Tefiti and that’s why he was banished. Aside from the odd gathering of fish every now and then, they never really hint that he leaves the cave. Which doesn’t seem right for someone who is as confident as he is.
5. The links between Moana and Moses.
This is more of something I drew from the film rather than a theory but I think a lot of people referenced the parting of the Red Sea in the final scene where Moana confronts Te Ka. The way that the ocean spreads, leaving two walls for Moana to walk through safely while the enemy approaches – it matches almost exactly the way Moses could part the sea so that his people could walk through safely. There’s two more links that I can find to the Exodus story but none match it so closely as that scene – the image on Maui’s back of his Mother casting the baby into the seat matches the Pharaoh’s order for the babies to be thrown into the sea and Maui’s monologue about how he ‘gave them everything but it wasn’t enough’ links to how Moses and God felt when the people reached the Promised Land. Just food for thought!
So there you have it! What did you guys think of this film? I love it.
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