Okay, can we talk about this scene for a minute? I’m sorry if this has been mentioned, but I have a lot of feels, so I need to spew them in a word vomit.
This is the scene in Lilo and Stitch when Nani’s come to the realization that she cannot take care of Lilo without a job, and she’s losing the last of her family.
She sings the song “Aloha O’e”. Which is a fairly familiar song for most people, even if you’ve never been to Hawaii. Now I had no idea the significance of this song other than the song had the word “aloha” and it means goodbye.
This is where it attacks you with feels. In case you didn’t know, Hawaii used to be a monarchy. And this song was written by their last Queen, QueenLiliʻuokalani when she was imprisoned and before her country was taken away:
…Another of her compositions was Aloha Oe, a song she had written previously and transcribed during her confinement. In her writings, she says “At first I had no instrument, and had to transcribe the notes by voice alone; but I found, notwithstanding disadvantages, great consolation in composing, and transcribed a number of songs. Three found their way from my prison to the city of Chicago, where they were printed, among them the “Aloha Oe” or “Farewell to Thee,” which became a very popular song”. Originally written as a lovers’ good-bye, the song came to be regarded as a symbol of, and lament for, the loss of her country.
So this song is her lament of losing her country to invaders and outsiders because she was unable to take care of it.
Just like Nani was unable to take care of Lilo.
Nani who grew up learning about the proud heritage of Hawaii and their monarchy and their queen. She not only feels failure as a sister and guardian, but also as a Hawaiian. She’s not able to protect what is hers from outsiders. Someone has come, yet again, with legal prescient to take away what she should have taken care of.
I must say, Disney, this is how you do cultural significance. This is how you pay homage. This is how you do respect.
AND I JUST HAVE SO MANY FEELS.
as a hawaiian, it makes me really happy to know that you understand how significant that song was.