As we carry on our look at Disney’s best animated heroines we’re taking a look at Lilo from the beloved animated film Lilo & Stitch. Lilo Pelekai encapsulates the best of children in many ways; their ability to wonder, believe and dream. The story of Stitch’s arrival on earth is like any element of the unknown that humans come face to face with.
She’s an inquisitive and excitable child, which we can see often gets her into trouble. From the beginning of the film she’s seen as a bit of an outcast, with opinions that often get her into trouble. As an orphan this only excludes her further, and there are many parallels between her and Stitch. She’s well read, inventive and clever, which brings her into loggerheads with her sister. However, it’s shown that her loneliness helps her become kind and open minded. The film also explores more about the perils of childhood and family, a topic often mentioned in Disney films, but not in the context of broken or difficult childhoods.
When most of the other female Disney leads are older and more idealistic, Lilo’s kindness and innocence makes her both interesting and unique. It’s clear why she was so popular that she was made into a TV show, and its a sign that Disney isn’t completely fixated on its ideas of perfection. Here’s to hoping that their new film Moana takes a deeper look at those less superficial ideas of humanity.