I love Asian cinema and culture. Due to this love, I was really excited to see Raya and the last dragon. However, part of me was very sceptical, I haven’t been in love with a lot of Disney’s recent releases. So, heading into Raya I wanted to know if this would be the film to break the Disney curse for me.
In a nutshell Raya and the last dragon is the definition of middle of the road to me. There are aspects I loved and others I really disliked. I loved the animation, it’s simply beautiful. I loved the voice acting in particular Awkwafina as Sisu who I truly believe steals the show and also adds a lot of life to scenes she’s in. The action is very well done but I wish there was more of it because of how good it is.
The main theme of the film is Trust and while it’s an excellent message to share it becomes less impactful when the characters continually go on and on about it and in my opinion dilutes the message the film is trying to put over. The films on the nose themes just come over as obnoxious. While people may give it a free pass since it’s a “kids” film, people who aren’t kids watch these films, so it feels like an excuse at times to cover up lazy writing.
Raya and the last dragon had the potential to be great but overall, I just found it average.