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 Moonlight 

Rate This Film
A 46%  46%  [ 6 ]
B 23%  23%  [ 3 ]
C 15%  15%  [ 2 ]
D 8%  8%  [ 1 ]
F 8%  8%  [ 1 ]
Total votes : 13

 Moonlight 
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Moonlight is a 2016 American drama film written and directed by Barry Jenkins, with a story by Tarell Alvin McCraney. The film stars Trevante Rhodes, André Holland, Janelle Monáe, Ashton Sanders, Jharrel Jerome, Naomie Harris, and Mahershala Ali.

Principal photography on the film began on October 14, 2015 in Miami, Florida. The film had its world premiere at the Telluride Film Festival on September 2, 2016. The film is scheduled to be released on October 21, 2016, by A24.

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Fri Oct 21, 2016 4:40 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
This is an absolutely fantastic movie. It lives up to the hype and then some. It's gorgeously directed and the entire cast is incredible. This movie may already have the SAG Ensemble award locked up because almost every performance in here is Oscar-worthy, IMO. Mahershala Ali completely subverts the archetype of who this character typically is in movies of this sort and delivers a gentle, hugely sympathetic performance that's easily one of the year's best. The scene where he talks to Chiron about being who he is is so brilliantly played and written - it's one of the movie's standout moments. Also incredible is Naomie Harris - she probably has the showiest role in the movie, but she also injects it with a lot of humanity so that her final scene is incredibly moving. All three of the actors playing Chiron, all relative newcomers, deliver breakout performances, with Trevante Rhodes being particularly stunning. Andre Holland and Janelle Monae also deliver incredibly strong turns (you get what I'm saying here, the entire cast in this movie is amazing - it's next to impossible to single someone out). It's riveting and haunting and incredibly necessary - this is a movie that I think has the power to change a lot of minds and will resonate with many viewers long after leaving the theater. One of the year's best. A


Sat Oct 22, 2016 2:00 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
The second act was probably my least favorite of the film, even though it was still fantastic. But my favorite scenes were the aforementioned scene with young Chiron, Teresa and Juan, the scene between older Chiron and Paula (these two scenes made me cry), the confrontation between Juan and Paula in act one, the diner scene and the very final beat of the film between Chiron and Kevin.

This is going to be a star-marking role for Trevante Rhodes. He has an incredible screen presence.


Sat Oct 22, 2016 2:03 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
This is a lyrical, often incredibly beautiful film that just kind of washes over you. It's a more specific version of the type of movie that Boyhood was. The entire cast is outstanding from top to bottom, including Mahershala Ali (who I wish had more screen time), Naomie Harris (as a troubled addict whose glimpses of humanity poke out), the three actors playing Chiron, and a particularly great turn near the end of the film from Andre Holland as the matured version of Kevin. I loved it very much and hope it gets the award recognition it deserves. A


Mon Oct 31, 2016 10:03 am
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Post Re: Moonlight
Is it reductionist to label Moonlight as "The Black and Gay Boyhood?" Yes. But is it also as flattering as it is accurate? Yes.

In each of the three portions of writer-director Barry Jenkins's film, I was floored with the power of what I was seeing onscreen. Every scene feels so authentic that I couldn't help but respond with the corresponding elation, heartbreak, or bittersweet acceptance of the positive and negative forces colliding in protagonist Chiron's life. Each segment of the film works like a brilliant short film in its own right, but the latter two portions each benefit from the content that precedes them. By the time that we encounter Black in the final third of the film, his uncertain place as an adult hits hard because of the deep level of investment that Jenkins builds with the character in the first two segments. Each of the three actors who plays Chiron - Alex Hibbert as nine-year-old Little, Ashton Sanders as teenage Chiron, and Trevante Rhodes as adult Black - is superbly understated in the role. The decision to let each actor take a unique approach to the character - a decision enforced through Jenkins's refusal to let these three actors meet one another - helps to make the character's development between segments feel significant and meaningful; Chiron is never the same character between segments, but rather a changed one whose experiences have shaped him in profound ways at which we as viewers can only guess. Taken as a whole, these three performances help to develop a complex character whose constant sensitivity feels powerful and whose constant contradictions in masculinity - from Little's softness to Chiron's bubbling anger to Black's juxtaposition of external toughness with internal tenderness - make him feel like an authentically vulnerable young person whose public and private selves still have yet to find harmony with one another. However, as impressive as these collected performances are (to the extent that this film ought to gain very serious consideration in the SAG's Ensemble category despite the relative lack of recognizable names), the constants are even more impressive. Mahersherala Ali - already a proven performer from his underrated work on House of Cards - is a revelation as Juan, the most prominent father figure in Chiron's life. Ali's performance is wholly natural and unforced, and it lingers despite coming to an end after the first third of the film. He's the perfect role model for Chiron: a man who displays compassion and tenderness without sacrificing the model of masculinity that society expects from black men. Janelle Monae is also fantastic as Ali's girlfriend and mother figure to Chiron; her presence and compassion allows her performance to register despite a paucity of screentime. Naomie Harris rounds out the collection of stellar performances with stinging work as Chiron's drug-addicted mother who eventually sees the error of her ways; her performance is played so intelligently that she handles the pivot from drug-addled mess in the first two segments to voice of reason in her final scene perfectly. And finally, although they won't receive much awards attention, the actors who portray Kevin - Jaden Piner as a young child, Jharrel Jermone as a teenager, and Andre Holland as an adult - are also excellent in developing a more traditionally masculine male whose sexuality isn't as cut-and-dry as it initially appears. As dark as the film gets at certain points, I couldn't help but smile in the air of optimism that ultimately pervades the entire thing. By the final shot - which feels earned by the time we reach it - I couldn't wipe the wide grin from my face. Moonlight is a film that celebrates its protagonist's unconventional growth not as some sort of aberration, but rather as a natural progression toward discovering one's own identity. In that way, it's easily the most sublime film of the year to date, and sure to land a spot among my favorites of the year as a whole.

A

Stray observations:

1.) I'm kind of astounded that it has taken until November 11 to award my first full "A" of the year, especially when I usually have three or four such films by this point (or five last year). That being said, this one was worth the wait; I wouldn't be surprised if it finishes in the #1 spot.

2.) It's hard to say whether this or Carol is the biggest LGBT landmark film of the 2010s to date. Nevertheless, the fact that we've had four great films about same-sex relationships (the aforementioned two and 2010's The Kids Are All Right and 2013's Blue Is the Warmest Color; there's also a case to be made for Black Swan - where the protagonist is either lesbian or bisexual - and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo - which shows the title character enjoying consensual sex with each gender) is great. Now, here's to hoping that the "T" portion of that acronym gets an equally significant film by the end of 2019; the well-meaning-but-ultimately-troublesome The Danish Girl isn't sufficient.

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Sat Nov 12, 2016 2:10 am
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Post Re: Moonlight
This was fantastic! The more I think about it the more I appreciate it.

When we're introduced to adult Chiron I was a little taken aback but when he goes to the diner the similarity in demeanor with his teenage self was spot on.


Mon Nov 21, 2016 2:48 am
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Post Re: Moonlight
The first two segments of Moonlight are magnificently seductive moviemaking - the director Barrie Jenkins, thoroughly wound me into his story's grasp. However, the third segment was a letdown and worse, dispelled some of the earlier magic. I almost wish I'd waited for the Blu Ray special edition Moonlight: Memento Edit. The acting is solid and reinforced by the authentic yet understandable patois. *B+*


Sat Dec 31, 2016 2:57 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
This is a really good film, but I can't help but feel it's also a bit overhyped. I don't know exactly what I was expecting, but considering all the praise maybe I was just caught up in thinking I was going to be completely floored by it which didn't happen. That being said the acting is really top notch here with the best scenes involving either Mahershala Ali or Naomie Harris. I kind of wish both got more screentime, but they were played perfectly. All three actors who played Chiron were good too, especially the last guy and wow between this and Hidden Figures Janelle Monáe has a very promising acting career ahead of her.


Tue Jan 10, 2017 11:11 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
Wonderful wonderful film. Incredibly beautiful and heartbreaking.
A+

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Fri Jan 13, 2017 10:10 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
There are some great emotional scenes here. And from the end of the first act through the second I almost got the hype. Unfortunately, Chiron becomes a very boring adult and it kills the movie. I couldn't wait for it to end and let out an audible "thank goodness" when it finally did.

I'm glad he got laid, but is there a reason the end of the second act ended up being a stopper on his emotional development when it seemed so empowering in the moment?

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Tue Jan 17, 2017 11:26 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
I guess I'm not the audience for this movie. I can appreciate the acting from pretty much everyone in the movie, and the movie's got some quality things to say. I didn't personally like the way the movie was shot. Wobbly cam, blurred cam, panning cam. It took me out of the story. I guess just chalk it up to personal taste, but it didn't work for me.

6/10


Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:27 am
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Post Re: Moonlight
I think two things would have raised this movie up for me. Doing a reverse edit, where it becomes a story of How this gay black guy ended up in the gangster life. Ending with the "you're only a faggot if you let yourself be" line would have been more powerful. Or, we pick up Chiron's life after he gets out of juvy, when hes struggling to decide who he wants to be.

The high school section is easily the best. There aren't any wasted scenes, everything is either character or a payoff to an earlier scene. The beach scene was very erotic and the his revenge was intense and also relieving at the same time.

But I thought it was pretty obvious that he knew Kevin was forced to be him up. Yet, if he remains a virgin all the way to 25ish, that means that betrayal was the most significant thing in his life.

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Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:52 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
It's one of the most beautiful, heartfelt movies I've ever seen, and the most honest portrayal of what 'growing up gay' means. I don't have a lot to say that hasn't already been said, but this absolutely resonated with me on a very deep level. Best of the year.

A

will be among my KJ nominees for: Picture, Director, Score, Screenplay, Editing, Cinematography, Ensemble, Supporting Actors and Actresses (like, all of them), Breakthrough (director and all the Chirons)

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Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:33 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
A smooth coming-of-age drama. Our protagonist Chiron is a black kid, has a negligent single mother, grows up in a rough neighborhood, acts "soft" among his peers, finds a second home in a caring drug dealer and his girlfriend, and befriends a schoolmate named Kevin. This is the backdrop of the first act of the film that chronicles Chiron's coming of age journey in three segments: a kid as "Little", a teenager as "Chiron", and a grown-up as "Black". The story is nothing unpredictable. And this predictability makes it easy for one to submit to its heartwarming narrative, because one kind of takes for granted where the story is headed. Casting is good. The hazing scene with Kevin in the second act is emotionally raw and bare. The scene in the diner is quite moody and romantic.

B/B+


Tue Jan 24, 2017 4:19 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
This really was a great movie. Fantastic performances from absolutely everyone. Great cinematography, directing, score, etc... The ending was excellent.

A-

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Wed Feb 08, 2017 5:48 am
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Post Re: Moonlight
I don't get the hype for Mahershala Ali's performance... He has so little screentime.

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Fri Feb 17, 2017 12:10 am
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Post Re: Moonlight
The Chiron's were all better and had more to do but Ali was still great.

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Fri Feb 17, 2017 3:40 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
Well he has the whole gangster with a soul thing going on. I think it is more about rewarding Moonlight though, since it is unlikey to win anything else at this point. Then there's also the much more cynical reason for him being the front runner, but that has already been discussed to death in the oscar forum.

I don't think he is a lock though. Dev is coming in strong.

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Sat Feb 18, 2017 2:44 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
it's almost certainly going to win adapted screenplay as well, probably even more guaranteed than ali.

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Tue Feb 21, 2017 10:02 am
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Post Re: Moonlight
Nah Hidden Figures will win that on its way to best picture.

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Tue Feb 21, 2017 1:17 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
nah bro

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Tue Feb 21, 2017 2:16 pm
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Post 
Moonlight

It was alright. Besides Naomie Harris, all the performances "is" good, especially Mahershala Ali who surprised me with such a small role, and Ashton Sanders who plays teenage Chiron (hope he has a bright future). To be honest, all of Chiron's actors "is" great. Very believable character. However, the acting is the film's notable highlight. The film is slow and, while it doesn't necessarily drag, I wish it would hurry up. Jenkins shows his inexperience. Apart from the closing credits, the film is devoid of any meaningful musical accompaniment. The cinematography sometimes hits it but is mostly trying too hard to be artsy. The script is pretty good besides a few lines (like near-mute teen Chiron on the beach saying "I cry so much sometimes I feel like I'm just gonna turn into drops" - no teen has ever said anything even as remotely poetic). I believe the buzz surrounding the film is heightened because of last year's controversy and the powerful subject combo (race and sexual persuasion) which makes it easier to applaud, but there is very little in terms of creative content and technical expertise. And while the film's lack of synergy between structure, score, and editing adds to the rawness of the film, it also makes it difficult to be emotionally invested.

C+

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Wed Feb 22, 2017 12:08 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
I really liked all the scenes between Chiron and Kevin at all ages, and everything from the diner on is one of the best extended sequences of the year thanks to the screenplay and actors. The crackhead momma scenes felt a little bit overwrought and what a worse film like Precious would pull. Ali was good but there were a handful of supporting actor roles in the film I liked more. The ensemble is overall fantastic. All the Chirons killed it especially. As mentioned in this thread it's great how much Chiron is affected by the events in the one before it. Every event we see of him in this film matters. Chiron is so influenced by other people around him, it's like he gets the power to make who he is taken away from him. The screenplay is really one of the best of the year between that and the dialog. Overall I really liked it, but wouldn't call it my favorite of the year or anything


Mon Feb 27, 2017 7:38 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
The moody atmosphere and sometimes casualness/rawness brought on by the color contrast and camera angles really elevate the film to another level. This is a perfect film to spend some lone time with. I will revisit it on blu-ray (probably a Criterion treatment will be coming soon.).


Tue Feb 28, 2017 12:23 pm
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Post Re: Moonlight
***** / ***** (A)

The way this movie is made, they way it flows, the way it presents and builds these characters - it's truly cinema as an art form at its best. I was amazed to find that none of the Chiron actors 8or Kevin ones) ever met on set. It really speaks of how strong the direction is in this one - every actor nails those specific ways Chiron looks, talks, acts, his body language... The same goes for all actors playing Kevin. Barry Jenkins is a true talent in that aspect of directing his actors. And the rest of the movie is no less impressive.

I especially loved how universal it actually is. It's not just about being black, it's not just about being gay, it very much transcends that and becomes a story about not belonging into a certain part of society which is a truly universal thing a lot of people can identify with.

Amazing movie.


Tue Feb 28, 2017 1:16 pm
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