The Movie: 9/10
Each movie can do a lot for me. One movie can make me laugh and roll my eyes and give me a good time for a couple of hours. One movie can take me on an adventure that makes my eye open wide and dream of fantasy places, times, and distant places in the universe. And then there are movies, few and far between, that shine like beacon in my mind, shining light on aspects of humanity that get buried in the comedies and the adventures. Moonlight shines that light, and no, this isn’t a play on the title:) Happy coincidence.
I already think it’s impossible to understand why we have any problem with same-sex relationships in our species. It is a mystery no one can explain to me with any kind of rhetoric. I just don’t get it. So, as I watch a story about a young man, becoming a man, who is confronted with a society that REFUSES to accept who he truly is, I get angry, sad, disappointed, and motivated. It’s not just about putting on a facade to cover up who we are so that we are not chewed up and spit out by the people around us. We all do that to some degree, but when it’s because of something as fundamental as our sexuality, which is part of who we are from the moment we come into this world, I want to understand it better from every angle. We see this life from the point of view of Chiron. He’s growing up in a tough circumstance, to say the least. On top of everything else, he’s got the unnecessary burden of being ostracized and abused because of his budding sexual awareness. It’s hard enough in life to become a young person with all the sexual pressures. We have the hormones pushing you to adulthood, and on top of that, society and culture telling you how and who to be in terms of who you should want in your life and who you should be attracted to.
We follow Chiron from his 11-year-old self, to being a 17-year-old young man, to a grown man of 27. Each phase of his life he is confronted again and again with hiding who he is, just to survive. It’s beautifully balanced and presented, in that way that movies can do, bridging the gap between me, a middle-aged white heterosexual woman from a rural area, and a young black homosexual man growing up in the city. I mean, it is what it is, we are different…..but we’re both people trying to get through life. He’s fictional, of course, but he represents real folks who have lived that life and I feel more connected to at least some thread because of seeing it presented as a film, a piece of art that speaks to more than just a couple of hours of entertainment. That goes back to what movies do for me, and this one elevates a part of my compassion for people, and on any scale that’s life changing if you let it be. That’s what movies and stories about humanity are supposed to be. It’s a way to start thinking about what life for someone else is like on this planet and not just be so self-centric that we can’t sympathize or empathize with someone who doesn’t look like us, or live like us, or reflect more of who we are back at us. I love this story and this movie because it’s not me. I can’t solve the problem of why we still are hung up on this unintelligent view of homosexuality, but I can be one person who doesn’t have the hatred, the fear, the ignorance as part of how I live my life. Moonlight reminds me of all this, which is pretty damn deep for a flick:) I’m glad it won best picture of the year (even if they took a couple minutes to figure out who actually won:))
- Audio Commentary With Director Barry Jenkins
- Ensemble Of Emotion: Making Moonlight (21 Minutes) – Standard promotional type extra.
- Poetry Through Collaboration: The Music Of Moonlight (10 Minutes) – Interview With Nicholas Britell composer on the movie.
- Cruel Beauty: Filming In Miami (6 Minutes) – Barry Jenkins explains why the movie was filmed in Miami.
- UV Digital Copy
Cover Art: 9.8/10
This is one of the best movie covers/posters I have seen in a long time. I would have it as a poster in my house…yes!
Audio & Video: 9/10
Moonlight comes home courtesy of Lionsgate and a 1080P 2.38:1 AVC transfer. The movie uses a variety of filming styles that range from hand-held to steady-cam and the results are mixed throughout. Black levels are good and skin tones are correct, if I had any complaints it would be the overblown whites and crushed blacks in the middle of the film but those seem to be director intended.
Moonlight’s sound comes from an epic DTS-HD Master Audio mix that for a movie that has no action is quite action packed. Music is a big part of the movie from rap to classical it all sounds perfect. Dialog is clear even with the strong accents of the cast. Moonlight did not win the Best Picture for nothing this is intense film-making. Recommended!!!!
Overall Score 9.8/10