The quiet murmuring of the waves. The ocean at work as usual, along with the shore.
This is the sound that reaches your ears and gives you a serene sense of calm. It highlights the beginning and the ending of Moonlight.
Moonlight, a low budget film, premiered at the Telluride Film Festival in February, was distributed throughout the States during the month of October in 2016. It was directed in Miami, Florida.
The movie is shown in three segments, signifying the life changing scenes of it’s protagonists, Chiron’s story.
The film portrays the story of a black boy who grew up in the dredges of Miami’s shoreline, who wrestled with his identity, his home, his mother along with his emotional and physical capacity. Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue, by Tarell Alvin McCraney, is what the screenplay is roughly based upon.
Barry Jenkins did an excellent job directing such a film for it does exactly what it’s set out to do. Representation of an all-black cast, the troubles of the LGBTQ sector of our society, bullying, stereotyping, domestic abuse and various other issues have been addressed and brushed upon in Moonlight.
Chiron’s journey shows his struggle’s with his mother’s drug addiction; his relationship with an unexpected gentle mentor whose ironically, a drug dealer; his issues with social interaction, with being comfortable in his own skin; his kinship and attraction to a friend and finally, it shows him standing up for himself.
The questions we ask ourselves at some point or the other such as who we are, what is our purpose, why our family is the way it is, who are we attracted to, who do we like, what attracts our interest, where will we end up etc., are shown from an intricate personal perspective of Chiron’s as we watch Moonlight.
The enthralling cinematography by James Laxton and the strumming chords of the background instrumental collected by Nicholas Britell, enhances the experience of the raw character portrayals of Trevante Rhodes, André Holland, Janelle Monáe, Ashton Sanders, Naomie Harris and Mahershala Ali.
Many wondered how did this underdog of a film get nominated and won the Oscars. After the ‘OscarsSoWhite’ twitter trend and the controversy behind such heterogenous categorisation with a majority of white films getting nominated to the Oscars the previous year, many wondered whether this film was nothing but a positive publicity stunt by the Academy. But I’m immensely proud to say that this is not true and that, Moonlight is not a film that you would want to miss out on.
“At some point, you gotta decide for yourself who you are. Can’t let nobody make that decision for you”, is one of the dialogues from the film that can be cited to describe this jarring motion picture that is far too similar to the ocean that it portrays.
For it is, just as uncanny, unpredictable, turbulent yet gentle as the ocean is.
[Review by: Sreya K.]
Moonlight Movie Review Movie Review Moonlight