Cast: Mahershala Ali, Ashton Sanders, Alex R. Hibbert and Naomi Harris
Director: Barry Jenkins
Synopsis: The life of Chiron, an African-American boy who grows up in a rough Miami neighbourhood.
‘Moonlight’ is a coming of age story about Chiron’s life as a child, teen and adult. We see his development through life as he tries to find his place in the world. He Is brought up (if you want to call it that) by his crack addict mother (Naomi Harris) in a rough and crime-ridden neighbourhood, while he faces verbal and physical bullying throughout his school years, often having to run away from them, which is the opening of the film and where we first meet Chiron.
First of all ‘Moonlight’ is my favourite film of the year mainly because of the brilliant storytelling and structure that it follows. We first see Chiron as a young child struggling to survive the harsh neighbourhood that he lives in while coping with his unstable mother. The second section Is him as a teen in ‘High School’ still being continuously bullied every day, and the final section is him as a young adult, where he has a job, car and a house. As Chiron grows up, he tries to find who he is, he’s gay but doesn’t know if its right or wrong, he faces homophobic slurs daily, while he looks to Juan (Mahershala Ali) for guidance and support, even to the point of asking what a ‘Faggot’ is, suggesting this is what he got called. Being that young Chiron is innocent, it makes scenes like this hard and sad to watch, but is a realistic interpretation of life, which just proves that Barry Jenkins’ directing is outstanding, it shows that he knows what he’s doing and because of this, ‘Moonlight’ is a masterwork.
The performances from all cast are masterful, even the young Alex R. Hibbert who plays Chiron as a 9 year old is incredible. The performances are what really makes the film come to life, without them, the film would fail. Like I said before, the storytelling is outstanding and really conveys what life was like for Chiron.
Even the trailer is amazing, I get goose bumps every time I watch it and I still revisit it multiple times because of how incredible it is.
It was made with a shoe string budget of $1.5 million! which just shows you don’t need a big budget to create a masterpiece, it also means there is no excuse to make a bad film with a small budget!
There is no bad things to say about ‘Moonlight’, as it is a masterfully crafted film and deserved every Oscar is was nominated for. It 100% deserves 5 stars!