In a society birthing anti-heroes as the new norm, I take every opportunity to show my children what a true hero is.

After seeing Moana, Disney’s latest masterpiece, I find myself uniquely qualified to provide a review, and I say this for three reasons:

  • First, I’m a father of 12 children.
  • Second, 8 of those 12 children are girls. Lovely, intelligent, breathtaking girls…
  • Third and most important, I am married to a Samoan Princess.


My father-in-law, Molimau Tupa’i was an actual Chief of a village in Samoa.

So when my family and I went to see Moana, we not only felt connected to aspects of the storyline…I couldn’t wait to share why you should consider taking your family also.

It’s Hard Enough To Be A Parent

Let’s face it, society doesn’t do us parents any favors when it comes to raising the kids.

Mothers are mocked if they desire to be stay-at-home moms and not ‘reach their full potential’…


Fathers are at the receiving end of every joke & mockery in popular sitcoms. We’re portrayed as being idiots, clueless and without a backbone…

…and let’s not forget the ever-increasing idols promoted through sports, music and the Hollywood screen, usually shaking breasts, butts, cussing and showing no moral fiber whatsoever.

But it’s okay so long as they have a massive golden cross hanging from their neck, right?

No, it’s not alright…and I’m always outspoken when it comes to questionable conditions affecting my children. This is why I was so impressed by Disney’s new creation.

MOANA: 5 Reasons To Take Your Kids To See It

I sat there with my massive 18-year-old son, both of us unable to stop the tears from flowing or feeling an overwhelming sense of family.

Apart from not understanding who Maui was, the movie was parental bliss.

Kathilynn’s father said he felt the movie did justice to the boyhood stories of TANGALOA—the supreme deity of the Samoan pantheon (he was also called Tagaloa). This is the guy who threw bolders from heaven to crete the islands, had two flying fish, which he rode–one during the day and one at night.

…and when there was an eclipse of the sun, it was because the two fish were mating.


WHY did I love the movie so much, and why do I think you should see it too?

I have 5 specific reasons and I won’t ruin it with any spoilers, alright?

#1 Moana is a Strong Female Protagonist


Parents will be impressed with the main character. Not only is she beautiful, intelligent and brave…she has a heart as big as a sunrise. Moana will amaze every family member with her choices and determination to do what’s right.

Even more important, in my own opinion, it’s about time we had more female heroes in the world. Characters our girls can not only look up to, but emulate…and Moana is a shining star in that department!

#2 Moana Overcomes Adversity In A Way You Won’t Forget


We as parents, do our children a great harm when we lie to them.

Thing is, we do it more than we realize.

We tell them to ‘play nice’ with others and others will play nice with them.

We tell them they can do anything they can set their minds to.

We tell them it doesn’t matter what anybody thinks…and the list goes on.

What’s wrong with life being a challenge?

What’s wrong with being different or having respect for another’s view or opinion? We may learn something new—even if that’s what NOT to do.

Moana was confronted with a lifetime of culture, upbringing, and expectations from others, yet pursues a course that looks rebellious, but in the end, profoundly supports that same culture and expectations.

What’s even more impressive, she overcomes the trials and challenges RELYING on what her parents and elders taught her.

It’s a huge boost for us when the memorable moments reinforce what we’ve been trying to teach our kids.

#3 Moana goes beyond herself and displays a constant dedication to others


One of the most important aspects of this movie was Moana’s dedication to others. She literally looked beyond herself and used her love and dedication to her people to get past fears, apprehensions, and setbacks.

What amazed me was watching my younger children, from age 2 to 10. That sheer tenacity to do whatever it took to help her people stood out in such a way, my kids GOT it.

“Wow, she really loves her family,” whispered my daughter. “She’s amazing!”

Among a generation of self-indulgent, disrespectful, entitled brats, Moana was a breath of fresh air that displayed the character in being of service.

#4 Moana is packed full of hilarious comedy and awe-inspiring music


I’m always a bit leery when a new ‘kids’ film comes out, because I don’t know what agenda the studios are pushing this week.

You may not hold that same feeling or view, but I think we can agree that it can be terribly upsetting to think you’ll be seeing one type of film from a preview, only to get something completely different.

Not the case with Moana.

It’s clean. It’s funny. It’s breathtaking.

It was worth every single penny.

Dwayne Johnson (The Rock) does a brilliant job as Maui, keeping the little kids in stitches, while helping to bring out the best in Moana.


The whole flick was a well-balanced adventure, which leaves me with the final point…..

#5 Moana turned out to be a powerhouse action film fit for all ages.


Moana is one of those rare films that entertains both the adults as well as the kids…and everyone will be impressed.

You’ll laugh.

You may cry (we sure did).

…but everyone will gasp and contribute their ‘oooh’s and ‘ahhhhhhhh’s as Moana continues to do the right things for the right reasons and delivers an end results that we as parents can support and smile about.

Gosh, how often does THAT happen?


My personal recommendation is to take some time and treat your family to a wonderful splash of adventure.

Moana has become my family’s unanimous #1 movie pick of the year and our #1 All Time Favorite Disney Movie.

…and for the Buckley family, that’s saying quite a bit.

What Did YOU Think Of Moana?

I’d like to know what you thought about the movie and what kind of feedback you received from your own kids.

Post your reply in the comments section below and let’s have a conversation!

Until Next Time,


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