When Moana meets Maui on the island to bring him on the boat, immediately after finishing his song and dance number, Maui repays his potential savior by:

  • Throwing Moana in a cave
  • Sealing the entrance with a boulder
  • Stealing her boat, leaving her stranded on a deserted island, presumably without any food or fresh water

I can believe that an egotistical demigod would steal someone's boat to escape a millennium of island imprisonment. I can also believe that said demigod would not want to travel with a lowly mortal.

However, after meeting the first human he's seen in a thousand years, Maui actively traps his potential savior in a tiny cave on a deserted island without any food or water, where she will presumably die of dehydration.

How can Maui, in good conscience, leave Moana stranded in a cave to die without any food or water?

Furthermore, why even trap Moana in a cave to begin with? Maui doesn't know why Moana is there, or that she has the Heart of Te Fiti. Couldn't he just abandon her on the island without sealing the cave entrance? At least that way she could try and find food by fishing.

  • Who said, "good conscience" has anything to do with it? He just doesn't care at that point. I'm not really clear on what it is you're asking...you don't seem to have trouble with believing he'd do it.
    – Paulie_D
    Commented Jul 30, 2017 at 19:30
  • Seems like the title of the question doesn't match the body. The answer to "Did Maui try...?" is, obviously, yes - and it seems like you know that already. Commented Jul 30, 2017 at 20:59
  • 1
    @AnthonyGrist - Edit made to clear that up. But I don't think the question can be answered.
    – Tim
    Commented Jul 30, 2017 at 21:10

1 Answer 1


Maui probably expected Moana to escape, just probably not as quickly as she did.

There was, after all, a ladder in the cave.

It is reasonable to expect Maui would have just wished to have enough separation between himself and Moana to make a get-away. She could then forage like Maui did.

Although... since Maui had been on the island for roughly 1,000 years he was still condemning Moana to death...

maui cave ladder

  • Is letting someone die of old age, the same as "condemning them to death"? If it is the case, we are all murderers...
    – wip
    Commented Aug 4, 2017 at 15:34
  • 2
    I like to believe that Maui saw Moana as a hindrance to getting his hook back as well as a liability. After all, he thinks mortals will just die if they enter Lalotai. As the answer says, he put her in the cave so that he could get away, but it is my opinion that he felt Moana could survive long enough for him to come back after retrieving his hook. Of course, this is all speculation. Commented Jun 25, 2018 at 18:20

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