‘Moonlight’ Film Review: A Social Document of Sexual Identity and Masculinity

'Moonlight' Film Review: A Social Document of Sexual Identity and Masculinity
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Adapting the play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue by Tarell Alvin McCraney, director and writer Barry Jenkins has created a touching and explosive film that chronicles the life of an Afro-American male, Chiron, from childhood to adulthood in three persuasive chapters. Chiron is played by Alex R. Hibbert as a young boy, Ashton Sanders as a teenager, and Trevante Rhodes as a grown man.

Set in drug-plagued Miami, Chiron’s struggles set the driving themes for the entire film: he’s black, his troubled mother is a drug addict, he’s bullied and he’s struggling with his sexuality, asking himself, “Am I a faggot?”

Moonlight as such features a relatively thin narrative, which is not meant to be critical or negative. The film takes an intimate close-up perspective on a young man’s search for identity, sexual identity and masculinity, leaving the viewer touched, horrified, sad and hear-aching at the same time. The narrative comes all together in the final chapter, portraying the protagonist Chiron as a young man who prefers to be called “Black,” when we witness how his previous experiences and encounters in his life play out, shape him,

The narrative comes all together in the final chapter, portraying the protagonist Chiron as a young man who prefers to be called “Black,” when we witness how his previous experiences and encounters in his life play out, shape him, define him. At times the story is so personal and melancholic that it’s hard to watch. But it’s worth to watch!

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