Winning the Stage: Nate’s a star


Courtesy of Disney Media

Disney’s Broadway middle schooler’s story of self-acceptance released on Disney+ on March 15, 2022.

Julia Meyers, Staff Writer

“Better Nate than Ever” is an inspiring story of a kid who runs away to pursue his dream on Broadway. He and his friend Libby embark on a journey to New York to audition for “Lilo and Stitch: the musical.” They face problems like mean contestants, lacking a caretaker representative, and avoiding getting caught by their parents. Libby and Nate’s friendship is also in jeopardy.
Libby is Nate’s best friend and is a strong independent person who knows what she wants; accept what she wants to do. She struggles with finding her dream and calling. She is very predictable and similar to many other girls in movies in the past. I think they could have been a little bit more creative with her part in the movie.
Overall, the movie is very cheesy but cute. The theme of the movie is friendship and self-acceptance. In the movie, Nate struggles with accepting who he is as he grows. He grows as a person throughout the movie and gains confidence knowing that he is unique and special. He also learns that he is a valuable person and that there are people around him who love him.
These are good themes because they are things that we see in our everyday lives. We all need more self acceptance in our lives, to know that we are perfect human beings in God — loved and amazing. Also the fact rings true that we all struggle with finding who we are as we mature and learn from our mistakes.
On the musical side of the movie; songs like “No One Gets Left Behind” and “Big Time” are catchy songs but not memorable. They have good messages and move the story along, but I wasn’t blown away by them.
The parts of the movie that were stage performances are great transitions. I really loved the daydreaming and dream sequences where they are performing in the spotlight. I thought that they were very creative and heartfelt.
The storyline and overall arc of the movie is predictable but fun. You can see where the movie is going from the beginning, but that’s what you expect from a Disney movie.