Moonlight ★★★★½

A beautifully rendered take on masculinity within the African American landscape. Touching, full of restraint, and with plenty of moments that I can recall myself in my own life growing up. Barry Jenkins crafts a beautiful tale of a man's life, and the acting on all fronts is done so beautifully, from Mahershala Ali's Juan to Trevante Rhodes in the later portion of the film.

Special mention has to go to Naomie Harris for her performance, going through a wide range of emotions and feelings over the course of the film. She's an exclamation mark in a film that goes for a quiet period for sure, but one that echoes a sense of realism, that in the hands of another actress would come off as hammy. Measured doses is the best way to put it.

Barry Jenkin's choice to keep everything so simple, so quiet, so to the point, is a marvelous decision. It neither overstays it's welcome, nor does it go for cheap gimmicks and theatrics. It touches on major issues not discussed with in such vivid detail. (the only other movie I can think of that comes to mind is Brokeback Mountain in terms of handling masculinity with sexuality, but even then Moonlight does it much better, for a community that needs it more)

It's such a simple film, but says so much with so little.