76 Thoughts I Had Watching Disney’s ‘Raya and the Last Dragon’

Is there anything better than watching a NEW Disney movie?!

Raya and the Last Dragon ©Walt Disney Animation Studios

We’ve been looking forward to the Raya and the Last Dragon for MONTHS — and it doesn’t help that themed merchandise, incredible art displays, and new experiences have already landed in the parks.

The movie dropped both in theaters and on Disney+ (with premier access) on Friday, March 5 2021, and I am SO excited. Truthfully, I don’t know much about the plot or characters, because I like to be surprised. But I do know it’s got a killer cast and that Disney animation never ceases to amaze me.

So without further ado, let’s pop that popcorn and watch Disney’s newest classic!

Spoiler alert: this post will delve deep into the movie, and feature a review at the end. You’ve been warned!

76 Thoughts I Had Watching Raya and the Last Dragon for the First Time


1. Seeing the castle before a Disney movie and hearing “When You Wish Upon a Star” gives me feels every time.

2. Ok well this animation is unreal and it’s been 5 seconds.

3. THIS MOVIE IS BEAUTIFUL. This was made at PEOPLE’S HOMES. HOW?!?!!?!?!

4. The druun is very scary (and symbolic).

5. Disney loves a magic token. (See: Moana, The Little Mermaid, Pirates of the Caribbean…)

6. “It should’ve been this big inspirational moment…but instead…people being people…” Wow this movie is NOT subtle with its message.

7. “…that’s what happened when I came into the story.” Color me intrigued.

8. I don’t know what Tuk Tuk is, but I would die for him.


9. Her sass is off the charts and I LOVE IT.

10. BOOP.

11. Ok her dad is a treasure which means he will probably die because this is a Disney movie, and I’m already sad about it.

12. Loving this animation during the exposition of the other lands.

13. Why does that animated soup look so tasty?

14. Yes Raya queen, unite them with tasty soup.


15. Ok so Raya and not-Ruby Rose are gonna go find the dragon. This is what I am gathering.

16. I shouldn’t be thrilled that there’s fighting but I LOVE that these two girl bosses are so fierce.


18. Oh no. Oh no. Is this how dad dies?

19. THE DRUUN!!!!

20. NO DAD NO. *casually sobbing*

21. Omg the stone child is too much.


22. Just now realized she’s riding a GIANT TukTuk.

23. This Tail scene is giving me major “The Force Awakens” vibes with the sand and the wreckage.

24. Raya crying is breaking me. I already adore her.

25. Omg did she really bring a dragon back!?

26. A dragon named Awkwafina.

© Disney

27. Ok well in a close race Awkwafina Dragon may be the best character. (Also, I am going to continue to scream at how amazing this animation is. JUST LOOK AT HER HAIR.)

28. I knew we weren’t done with not-Ruby Rose.

29. Is it weird I like the glitter-farting bugs?

30. Raya is like a cartoon lady Indiana Jones.


32. Who is this adorable shrimp-peddling child?

© Disney

33. Poor TukTuk is always trying to get snacks and failing.

34. Have I pointed out how beautiful this movie is yet?

35. This poor child. I love him. Why do I love all of these characters so much!? Except for not-Ruby Rose. But even then I gotta respect her game.

36.  Could I pull off Sisu’s human hair?!

© Disney

37. Wow she got got by a baby.

38. Sisu buying everything with “credit” feels a little TOO familiar…


40. Wait…are they gonna pick up someone from each land on the boat and thus symbolize the world coming together!?

41. Poor Sisu is like a beautiful naive sophisticated new-born baby learning the truths of the world.


42. I guess I am a tongueless creatin cause I don’t *love* mango.

43. Tong is a treasure too!

44. Also, I am INTO the female warriors one shoulder lewk.

© Disney

45. These action scenes make me want to take sword-fighting STAT.

46. yasss Sisu! She is fierce but also FIERCE. Ya know what I mean?

47. Okay, there was a LOOK between not-Ruby Rose and Sisu. That’ll come back.

48. As Sisu tells about each of her siblings, I REALLY hope she gets to see them again.

49. Ugh, Raya’s dad.

50. This is not what I meant when I said I wanted to meet Sisu’s siblings.

51. “You won’t regret this…” I assume that we will but I like that we’re trying out Sisu’s plan.

© Disney

52. Not-Ruby Rose’s mom is stressing me out.

53. I think not-Ruby Rose will help. *firework goes off*

54. YES.

55. NO.


57. This can’t be real.


© Disney

59. Ok they are both out for BLOOD. (This movie is BEAUTIFUL.)

60. Sweet angels Boun and Tong and Tuktuk helping people!!!!


62. Why am I crying at this speech?


64. I mean, they’ll all come back right? This is very upsetting.

65. Oh no. It got not-Ruby Rose too.

© Disney


67. THE ANIMATION. Can we appreciate these stone-to-human transformations in the RAIN for a second?



70. The music is also fabulous.

71. SISU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

72. Ok who is Tong? It’s been annoying me all movie. *checks IMDB.* OMG WONG! THE BEST PART OF DR. STRANGE!

73. Boun’s family!!!

74. If you see me buying a Tuktuk plush at the Emporium tomorrow, mind ya business.


76. “Welcome to Kumandra.” Okay, I guess I’ll just cry forever.

© Disney


Okay, first of all, I’d like to reiterate that this movie was MADE AT HOME. I simply can’t wrap my mind around that. It’s stunning — some of the most beautiful animation I have ever seen.

Second, those were some delightful characters. Raya was incredible, as were Siku, Boun, and Naamari. Plus, Tuktuk is obviously a treasure, and her dad was perfect. I really liked everyone (minus the Druuns obvi), which is rare for me.

© 2021 Disney.

I’m always a little bummed when a Disney movie doesn’t have music, but I think this one didn’t need it. It would’ve been quite the juxtaposition between these kick-butt action scenes and ballads.

This movie reminded me of Moana quite a bit — not only in the gorgeous scenery and the gem quest plot, but that there isn’t a classic Disney villain. However, unlike in Moana, I didn’t really mind in Raya. I think I liked the movie more as a whole — it moved a lot faster and had plenty of other interesting characters.

Is Raya and the Last Dragon a kid’s movie? Honestly, I don’t know. It certainly had moments of humor, but much like recent Pixar films (such as Soul), the movie definitely felt grown up.

© Disney

I hope that children watch it though. I remember when I first saw Mulan — the bravest Disney princess I had seen yet. She fought hidden alongside the boys and had to prove herself to earn their respect in the end. And here we are, 23 years later, where Raya is LEADING the boys, never once having to hide who she is. It makes me so happy to think that a new generation of girls will grow up with Raya.

Overall, I thought Raya and the Last Dragon was simply stunning. I mean they MADE IT AT HOME (did I mention that?). But beyond that, the message of unity was loud and clear — and honestly, needs to be shouted from the rooftops. It’s far from a traditional Disney movie, but it works on so many levels. The story-telling is fast and entertaining, the characters are delightful, the messages are important reminders, and did I mention it’s gorgeous?

Have you seen Raya and the Last Dragon? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!


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Molly is a lifelong Disney enthusiast, and former Walt Disney World Guest Relations Cast Member and tour guide. Her Walt Disney World favorites include Festival of the Lion King, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Fantasmic!, Mickey-shaped pretzels and rice krispie treats, and anything with Buzz Lightyear! She lives in Orlando with her husband (who she met in Guest Relations) and their two rescue dogs, Kronk and Cruella de Vil (Ella for short!)

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10 Replies to “76 Thoughts I Had Watching Disney’s ‘Raya and the Last Dragon’”

  1. This movie was sorely lacking in my opinion. It was very fast-paced, and felt rushed the entire time. Not one character was likeable outside of the father. The storyline was weak and extremely predictable as well. The “jokes” fell flat, because they tried way too hard to shove them down your throat or act goofy at all times for cheap laughs, which never happened, by the way. Awkwafina was pure cringe at best, her obnoxious voice croaking through the entire movie makes me really confused as to how she was chosen for this role. Also now I’m really dreading to hear her voice Scuttle in the Little Mermaid… but at least that character is meant to be annoying. Let’s not mention the “con-baby”… what were they thinking?! This was a very poorly executed movie on Disney’s part, and it showed throughout the entire movie. I’ve been a life-long Disney fan for nearly 34 years and this is definitely one of the worst I’ve seen. I wish there were more people who would voice their honest opinions on Disney movies that fall flat, instead of writing silly articles like this, but for some reason people feel the need to constantly act like everything Disney creates is gold. Let’s call this what it really was- this movie was a disappointing, rushed, predictable mess. Hopefully the next movie we get will be a drastic improvement.

  2. The DRAGONS UGH they were so beautiful. I loved the mechanics of Sissi ‘flying’ on the raindrops. I find films sometimes these days to be so fast paced (Onward was exceedingly poor in that respect) something must be happening at ALL TIMES, it’s like they worry the audience will get bored too easily, but Raya didnt (thankfully) feel like that even with a LOT of characters. Better storyline than Frozen 2, not as funny as zootopia, and doesn’t hit anywhere near Moana, but still so beautiful and good in its own right. I need to rewatch it for more cute Sisu goodness.

  3. This is a lame movie. By the way Granny needs her reading glasses. Because I clearly wrote this was lame kids stuff. Not this is a baby movie. This movie is really for boring old people. Most kids will find it dull and lose interest in the first two minutes of the movie

  4. This movie is the lamest movie Disney has put out in a while. Parents shouldn’t torture their kids by making them watch this.

  5. Molly I love reading your multiple thoughts on this and that. You outdid yourself on this movie. Do you remember it and then write or do you say it out loud while you are watching and your husband writes it? ( kidding). One thought I had was they pronounce her name Rye-a. Like rye bread. Not Ray A like I thought. This is a Disney miracle movie in that children love it and adults love it. It’s not a baby movie, as I read in a comment. I laughed so hard that you wrote you’d be in the emporium buying Tuc Tuc! So funny. I myself am amassing a rather large Raya collection! Target, Walmart, Disney store all have really beautiful merchandise. And I’m getting it all. For the granddaughters, of course. Not myself. Well maybe a little for myself. Ok a LOT

  6. To be honest I really have no interest in this movie. I think I will skip it. I am waiting for the Black Widow to come out in May. This movie sounds too preachy. I need action. Not all this lame kids stuff

    1. LMAO OK sir, good for you announcing that you don’t want kids stuff or moral ‘preaching’ from a Disney Animated feature. It’s good that you recognize you require boom-pow in every scene to keep your attention.

  7. I watched it in the movie theater on the 6th and LOVED it! It is the type of movie we need right now. With isolation, politics and media pulling everyone one way or the other this is the kind of movie that shows how badly we need unity.
    The biggest symbolism I found was how Tong’s entire village, who fought the Druun a group of warriors were completely wiped up fighting a being who couldn’t be defeated.
    The comedy breaks were wonderful and it was great to see the band of ‘misfits’ come together to bring the world back. Plus who could not love a beautiful dragon with some rocking hair!

  8. Couldn’t agree more! We watched this Saturday as a family my 6 year old daughter has watched it 3 more times since then! Even my 13 year old son liked it! Both my husband and I said just how beautiful the animation was. Very good dinosaur vibes with super realistic landscapes and elements but with soft edged loveable characters. I agree music wasn’t needed as the soundtrack was beautiful and the fight scenes (which were spectacular) were also poignant. I kept getting Mortal Kombat vibes! Finish him!! 😅 and on a final note yes I believe sisu hair would be perfect on you! And I shall join you! 😁