“MOONLIGHT”–A MOVIE REVIEW   Leave a comment

moonlight

Once again I think I fell for the hype and found myself disappointed in a movie when I actually saw it. “Moonlight” is not your ordinary movie in that it tackles the subject of a Gay, Black 9 year old kid/teenager/adult as he goes through discovering who he is. It is not a ‘Gay’ and/or ‘Black’movie meant only for a minority as it gets into the many feelings all human beings go through.

Chiron (Alex Hibbart as the 9 year old, Ashton Sanders, the teenager and Trevante Rhodes as the adult) goes from being an alienated, bullied boy to a muscled drug dealer who nobody fools with and in a way has followed the path of his mentor and surrogate father, Juan (Mahershala Ali), who taught the kid how to swim and discover himself.

We also meet his friend Kevin (played at the three same stages as Chiron by Jadin Piner, Jharrel Jerome and Andre Holland), his mother (Naomie Harris) and Juan’s girlfriend (Janelle Monae) who offers Chiron a place to stay whenever he needs one.

Chiron, as many gay kids, of any color, becomes a loner, is beaten up by schoolmates and accepts whatever kindness he receives. It was interesting following his path and where it goes. The scene in the diner is a love story unto itself though nothing is said about love except for a record playing on the jukebox.

The film failed me in that certain sections the jargon, vernacular, made it difficult for me to hear what was being said though I understood what was being done just as I didn’t quite understand the relationship between Juan and Chiron and how it became about and took the turn it did. Also a few very interesting characters just disappear from the film. I wasn’t aware the N word was used so much between Blacks as it is here at a certain level.

All 3 actors playing Chiron are outstanding as is the oldest Kevin. The arch of Chiron’s life holds your interest though at times moves too slowly. Ali’s Juan is an imposing figure and the two women, Harris and Monae, especially the former are strong in their portrayals.

The direction and screenplay by Barry Jenkins, based on his life, tackles a rarely told story in the movies but it is also about loneliness and trying to answer the question “Who am I?”  Some scenes are held too long, others don’t finish the thoughts being expressed. There are two powerful scenes I don’t think I will forget though they may go over the heads of others.

I do recommend “Moonlight” but don’t go in with high expectations as I did and approach it as going to see a good film with a new story.

 

Movie trailer

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9NJj12tJzqc

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Posted November 12, 2016 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, MOVIE REVIEW, MOVIES, Uncategorized

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