This November, Disney released its latest blockbuster animation film, the Polynesian adventure “Moana.” It is their first musical since “Frozen” — a high-water mark in their animation history — and aimed to create a strong follow up by soliciting the help of the mind behind “Hamilton,” Lin-Manuel Miranda. Here is my ranking of the songs from “Moana.”
This song is an atrocity. Intended to be the show’s villainous show-stopper, it literally stops all of the movie’s momentum. It sounds like a David Bowie glam rock song sung by a mutant crab. The song stands out like a sore thumb from the rest of the movie and its soundtrack. This is may be the worst Disney song in an animated film since 1988’s “Oliver and Company.”
9. “You’re Welcome”
This song is also not good. I can hear Miranda’s sound dripping from the song, and I am not a fan. It sounds like an updated attempt on “Friend Like Me” from “Aladdin,” but it lacks the bombast and fun.
8. “Logo Te Pate”
I honestly don’t remember this song at all. Sorry!
7. “An Innocent Warrior”
This song is way too short to make an impact, either positive or negative.
6. “We Know the Way”
OK. But, it would have been a lot better if Lin-Manuel Miranda had not sang on it.
5. “Tulou Tagaloa”
The song reminds me a lot of “Veulie” from “Frozen.”
4. “Know Who You Are”
This song is when the movie turns into one, big pro-environment message, and it is a pretty song at the height of the movie’s conflict.
3. “I Am Moana (Song of the Ancestors)”
An emotional and beautiful song at the beginning of the film’s climax.
2. “Where You Are”
This song is a great setup for the film and includes most of the ensemble. It’s simple and fun with a lot of gorgeous visuals attached.
1. “How Far I’ll Go”
The best songs in Disney movies tend to be the protagonists’ “I wish” song, and “Moana” is no exception. “How Far I’ll Go” is in the tradition of great songs such “Part of Your World” from “The Little Mermaid” and “Reflection” from “Mulan.” By far this is the musical highlight of the film, and its reprise is great too.
Take a listen for yourself on the Spotify playlist below.