Denzel Washington and Viola Davis both won Tony Awards for their performances in the stage version of August Wilson’s passionately acted drama.
This film adaptation is Washington’s third feature outing as director, and his deep understanding of the issues at the heart of a still racially divided America underpins a story which is primarily about difficult family relationships.
Canny, hard-nosed blue-collar worker Troy (Washington) and stoical Rose (Davis) are the parents of three variously troubled boys in 1950s Pittsburgh. The tone is set early on when teenager Cory (Jovan Adepo) asks his dad, “How come you never liked me?” and Troy replies, “What law is there saying I got to like you?” There’s much wit and affection in all the characters, but ultimately it’s a film about secrets and buried emotions.
Director: Barry Jenkins.
Starring: Alex Hibbert, Naomie Harris, Trevante Rhodes, Ashton Sanders. USA 2016. 111 mins.
Ambitious in so many ways, Moonlight is the story of an African-American gay man growing up in a USA that is perhaps even more intolerant than ever. In only his second feature after the brilliant but undervalued Medicine For Melancholy, writer-director Barry Jenkins successfully employs three different actors to portray the same character at three different ages.
Charismatic newcomer Alex Hibbert plays the young, naive schoolboy living with his emotionally unreliable addict mother (Harris, Our Kind Of Traitor); Ashton Sanders (Straight Outta Compton) is the bullied teenager fully discovering his sexuality; and American football star Trevante Rhodes gives a breakout performance as the confident drug-dealing adult, a tribute to the role model who helped him endure his difficult upbringing. Never less than riveting, Moonlight is already being showered with richly deserved awards.
11.00Big Scream: Exclusively for parents or carers with babies under the age of one.
Audio Described: Everyone welcome. Audio Description is available for this film, and is undetectable to anyone not wearing a headset