Barry Jenkins’ new film “Moonlight” just came out five days ago, and it is already raking in rave reviews. Based on Tarell Alvin McCraney’s play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue, the film follows a young black man’s life through his upbringing in Miami as he grapples with his sexuality. The gripping story traces the three stages of his life: youth, adolescence, and adulthood, and his struggle with his identity.
We see Chiron, the main character, deal with bullies and a rough neighborhood in his childhood, before he befriends a local drug dealer. As the movie progresses, complex themes of masculinity, race, homophobia, and intersectionality arise, building Chiron’s evolution. His internal conflict reaches a breaking point in an intense and moving scene in the third stage of his life, when he meets an old friend.
Many have praised this as the year’s best movie; David Sims from The Atlantic declared, “This is not an “issue” film that’s mainly “about” race or sexuality; this is a humane movie, one that’s looking to prompt empathy and introspection most of all.” With such an overwhelmingly positive reception, it definitely looks to be a contender in the next Oscar nominations. Watch the trailer below!