So many thoughts, but the best thing about Raya is that it kept me thinking about it after we were done watching. I think there are a lot of positive lessons from the unspoken lesson about the value of play, as demonstrated by the dragon Sisu, to selflessness and cooperation that is paramount to the story. Even the violence toward the end, which was the only part of the movie I wasn't sure about supporting, has a lesson of its own. The violence is being portrayed as bad, while selfless cooperation is portrayed in a positive light. Our two leading ladies realize that and give up their fight in order to do good.
But, it is because of the violence that I rated it 8+, and if you have a particularly sensitive child, you may want to wait til they're even older. Earlier in the movie, one-on-one battle is light-hearted and almost sport-like, but toward the end there is a scene where the two main ladies are legitimately, viciously trying to kill each other out of anger and sadness. I even felt like looking away because it was heartbreaking to watch. But like I said above, I believe the filmakers portray it in that way to show that violence and hatred are not good and will get us nowhere. It shows the difference that is made when we use our efforts for good rather than selfishness and anger. It would be a good idea to discuss those aspects of this movie with our children.
I would have rated it 6 stars (wink) if it was a musical with good music, but alas, it was not a musical.