|The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:|
|Production country:||USA 2016|
|Running time:||Approx. 111 min.|
Even as a 10-year-old boy, Chiron (Alex Hibbert) realizes how hard it is to find his place in life. Not only because of the color of his skin, but also because of his social standing, he is oppressed by the other kids. It isn't until he meets dealer Juan (Mahershala Ali) and his girlfriend Tessa (Janelle Monáe) that his life seems to take a bit of a turn for the better. But even as a teenager, things don't really get any easier for Chiron (Ashton Sanders). His drug-addicted mother (Naomie Harris) keeps showing up, casting a shadow over his otherwise good life with Juan and Tessa. He's also strongly attracted to his classmate Kevin - feelings that only confuse him more. Finally, as a young man, he calls himself only Black (Trevante Rhodes), has had a rough time, and completely shuts himself off from those around him - until he receives an unexpected phone call.
There have probably been few films more in the news in recent weeks than Oscar winner Moonlight - with the possible exception of crowd-pleaser La La Land, which was famously announced in error as the winner for BEST FILM before the error could be cleared up. The makers of La La Land proved to be very fair losers, while the team behind indie drama Moonlight were completely overwhelmed by the win. The attention that both films have received in the days following the awards may not necessarily be the publicity that the makers wanted, but at least it ensures that almost everyone has now heard of Moonlight , which otherwise would certainly not have been the case, but which this drama undoubtedly deserves.
Whether now actually the best film has won, is admittedly a matter of opinion. The fact that Moonlight doesn't leave its viewers happy and inspired could, for instance, lead some to find it impossible to connect with the drama, and therefore unable to comprehend the accolades and awards. The story Barry Jenkins tells here is full of depressing moments, full of sadness and the feeling of loneliness. And yet, there is also a certain beauty and a glimmer of hope hidden within it that makes the film so special and so meaningful. It is then this very meaningfulness that justifies the Oscar and all other awards in every way.
Chiron's story is told in three formative periods of his young life. Along the way, Jenkins often allows quiet moments to speak, presenting themselves as a perfect composition of images and music. With no striking moments, no kitsch, as well as a restrained and, precisely because of this, intense authenticity, an emotional power is built up that culminates in a final scene that manages to become, in just a few words, one of the most moving and impressive endings in recent cinema history.
Great actors and intense imagery ensure that this film gets under your skin. Certainly, Moonlight is not an easy film to watch. It is an artistically ambitious, dramaturgically perhaps somewhat unwieldy work, but with its modest means it shows so much truth about the need for human closeness, care and finding one's right place in life. A beautiful film in its sad and difficult way that more than deserves an Absolutely Worth Seeing
An article by Frankfurt-Tipp