Critics are raving about Moonlight, a film about a young man who comes out, and it is looking to be an early Oscars contender.
Written and directed by Barry Jenkins, the story shows an African American man over three periods of his life.
Struggling with his sexuality, his relationships with his mother, and his faith, Chiron also comes up against school bullying and gang violence in Miami, Florida.
It starts Trevante Rhodes, André Holland, singer Janelle Monáe, and Ashton Sanders.
The film had its world premiere at Telluride, and has had reviewers celebrating after the Toronto and London Film Festival yesterday.
NPR‘s Bob Mondello described it as a ‘gorgeous movie’. ‘If it isn’t up for Best Picture, I’m going to be very upset,’ he said.
Justin Chang, writing for the Los Angeles Times, agreed that Moonlight will be the beneficiary of many awards come Oscar time.
‘Moonlight is thoughtful and harrowing, sensual and earthy, achingly romantic and uncommonly wise. It doesn’t say much; it says everything,’ he said.
Time Out New York‘s Joshua Rothkopf agreed, praising the direction and cinematography.
In his five out of five star review, he writes how ‘the film is more radical for articulating an internal sexual turbulence that doesn’t fit the stereotype: It’s not the one laid down by Brokeback Mountain or other crucial gay stories but something new, seething with anxiety, similar to the vibe you feel in the tense, ticking beats of Frank Ocean.’
He added: ‘Moonlight takes the pain of growing up and turns it into hardened scars and private caresses. This film is, without a doubt, the reason we go to the movies: to understand, to come closer, to ache, hopefully with another.’
The film currently has a 98% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Moonlight is out on 21 October.