Hannah Montana is the fictional alter ego of character Miley Stewart. The movie continues a storyline that the popular television show started, and viewers can see Miley struggling between her two identities while continuing to live a normal life as a teenage girl, when she is really a famous pop star.
The character of Hannah Montana and her real self, Miley Stewart, is played by teen singing sensation Miley Cyrus, whose real-life father, Billy Ray Cyrus, plays her movie dad as well. His character is Robby Ray Stewart. Miley gets through the hard times thanks to friends Lilly, played by Emily Osment, and her wisecracking brother Jackson, played by Jason Earles. A character that was never seen on the show but plays Miley's love interest in the film, Lucas Till, portrays country boy Travis Brody. Moises Arias and Mitchel Musso, who play Rico and Oliver on the show, make brief appearances reprising their television characters.
In this film, Miley's dad feels like life as a pop star has gone to her head. He wants her to take some time off from the limelight and relax --- and think about what she really wants out of life. They head to Tennessee, where the family is from originally. Going back to her roots brings Miley comfort and makes her realize what's really important. Fame is fleeting, but the love of family and friends will always be there. Some funny moments happen when Miley has to hop between her two identities to avoid being discovered by the press, who want to reveal to the world who she really is. She struggles to maintain a relationship with Travis and be herself. There are several musical numbers that tie the film together.
The theme in this movie is fairly obvious, with the internal struggle Miley faces actually externalizing as she tries to live two lives successfully. Her public life and private life collide in Tennessee when she has to face paparazzi that want to expose her. It's hard enough to be a teenager, but having to live a life in the public eye makes it even more difficult. The main theme that runs through the movie and the show as well is that family and friends are the most important part of our lives. Miley's mother passed away when she was young, and she and her father are very close. This relationship, as well as her friendships, nurture Miley through her hard times as a young, famous singer.
The struggle Miley faces is resolved when she realizes that it's all right to just be herself. At the end of the film, she exposes herself to an audience she is playing to dressed as Hannah. She feels comfortable being in her hometown and sure she'll be accepted by her peers as the real Miley Stewart, a real person. The crowd is surprised but does not want Miley to quit performing as Hannah, so they resolve to keep her identity under wraps so she can continue her life as she knows it. Miley performs the most famous song from the film, "The Climb," which details her struggles and hopes as a performer and a young woman.