MOONLIGHT AND SCRIPT: Is Moonlight depressing?

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017

Part 1—Abandonment and abuse:
Is the widely-acclaimed (but little seen) feature film Moonlight depressing?

On Saturday afternoon, we saw the Oscar-nominated film for the second time. We pose our question for two reasons, stemming from the experience we had the first time we saw the film.

We saw Moonlight for the first time one week ago. In was a low ticket price Monday matinee. Few people were in attendance at the slightly weird old Senator, John Waters' current home court.

(Remind us to tell you about the time we opened for John Waters!)

Before the movie began, a group of 60-something women were discussing which Oscar-nominated films they'd already seen. One of the women said her friends hadn't wanted to come with her to see Moonlight because they'd heard, or at least had the idea, that the film is "depressing" (her word).

That was before the film began. When we actually watched the film that day, we found it very depressing.

In a nutshell, here's why. We won't be avoiding spoilers:

We're not sure when we've seen a character in a film subjected to so much brutality, abandonment and abuse. Fleshing out our report, the character in question is 9 or possibly 10 years old when Moonlight begins.

Already, he's virtually catatonic. Very early in the film, we start to see the sources of his apparent traumatization.

The abuse, and the results of same, remain on vivid display throughout the course of the film. That extends through the film's widely-praised closing scene or scenes, when we learn that the character, who's 26 or 27 by now, seems to have had one intimate sexual experience in the course of his life.

Rather plainly, that seems to be one result of the endless, extreme mistreatment we've witnessed for the previous two hours. Did we mention the fact that this person is only 9 years old at the start of the film? That he already carries himself like a deeply traumatized child?

We don't know when we've seen so much abandonment and abuse visited on a character. We found this portrait deeply depressing, in part because it made us think of how many actual kids presumably suffer from similar forms of mistreatment.

We found Moonlight quite depressing the first time we saw it. When we saw it again this weekend, we basically enjoyed the film.

We were glad that we'd seen it again. Largely because we understood, coming in, what we would be seeing, we were able to view the film as exposition and argument, as the work of fiction it actually (pretty much) is.

Why did we go to see Moonlight again? Largely from a sense of puzzlement.

You see, after seeing the film the first time, we came home and read a string of major reviews. We were struck by the observations and accounts which didn't appear in these rave reviews.

Had any of these major reviewers watched the same film we had? None of them seemed to have any sense of the amount of abuse they'd seen portrayed in the course of the film. To the extent that they did understand what they'd seen, they seemed perhaps disinclined to describe it.

We went to see the film a second time out of puzzlement at these reviews. We wanted to compare the events on the screen to the accounts of the film we'd been reading for several days.

The second time around, we didn't find Moonlight depressing. That said, the events it portrays were still horrific, unless you possibly maybe think that certain small children don't count.

Little that we say this week will be meant as a criticism of Barry Jenkins, the talented person who wrote and directed Moonlight. We aren't cineastes or film critics here, but we're inclined to agree with a universal judgment among those who are:

Barry Jenkins, writer/director of Moonlight, strikes us as a very bright person who's also highly skilled.

That said, Jenkins didn't write the reviews of his film. (We're prepared to assume that the film's press kit may have helped.) Our nation's top-ranking film critics wrote the reviews of this film.

We remain fascinated by those reviews, which almost seem to work from script even more than Jenkins' talented actors did. In our view, the things those reviews said, and didn't say, may tell us about the shape of our journalism, and maybe possibly just perhaps about the shape of our tribe and our world.

Tomorrow: Live and direct from the 1960s:

"Stephen is eight years old...tiny, desperate, unwell."

20 comments:

  1. I was blown away by Moonlight. I hope it wins "Best Picture". I can understand that the movie had a different impact on Bob, who taughts school to inner city children.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello, I am Theresa Williams After being in relationship with Anderson for years, he broke up with me, I did everything possible to bring him back but all was in vain, I wanted him back so much because of the love I have for him, I begged him with everything, I made promises but he refused. I explained my problem to my friend and she suggested that I should rather contact a spell caster that could help me cast a spell to bring him back but I am the type that never believed in spell, I had no choice than to try it, I mailed the spell caster, and he told me there was no problem that everything will be okay before three days, that my ex will return to me before three days, he cast the spell and surprisingly in the second day, it was around 4 pm. My ex called me, I was so surprised, I answered the call and all he said was that he was so sorry for everything that happened that he wanted me to return to him, that he loves me so much. I was so happy and went to him that was how we started living together happily again. Since then, I have made promise that anybody I know that have a relationship problem, I would be of help to such person by referring him or her to the only real and powerful spell caster who helped me with my own problem. email: drogunduspellcaster@gmail.com you can email him if you need his assistance in your relationship or any other Case.

      1) Love Spells
      2) Lost Love Spells
      3) Divorce Spells
      4) Marriage Spells
      5) Binding Spell.
      6) Breakup Spells
      7) Banish a past Lover
      8.) You want to be promoted in your office/ Lottery spell
      9) want to satisfy your lover
      Contact this great man if you are having any problem for a lasting solution
      through drogunduspellcaster@gmail.com

      Delete
    2. Sincerely i was so crushed when my Husband of 8 years left me and moved to Quebec City to be with another woman.The pains was just too much for me to bear that I couldn’t just bear it anymore. So i had to reached out to the Internet for help until i found out that Dr. Alli was the real deal.. I had tried the whole lot I knew, and with your spells, blessings and extraordinary magical powers, you did all the work for me, which you have guaranteed me positive result in 48 hours, my Ex Husband came back to me and he was remorseful for the whole lot he has done And now my life is balanced and i am happy again. Dr. Alli you do a great service to people. Friends in case you need the help of Dr.Alli kindly mail him on allispellhelp1@gmail.com or +2348100772528 Sir, i will for ever recommend you

      Delete
    3. My name is NICOLE from USA. I am here to give testimony on how I got my husband back, my husband left me for no reason months ago. He moved in with another woman, I felt like killing myself, my life became very bitter and sorrowful. Then one day a friend of mine told me about a great spell caster that is very good and she said that he told her all about her life history and the problem she is facing, i didn't believe it because I've worked with so many of them and it didn't work. She begged me further so I decided to try this great spell caster called Great Dr BEN . I still didn't believe but inside me i wanted to give a try and as God will have it i used the spell solution he gave me and the next day and I really received a call from my darling husband, He apologized and came back to me. I'm very happy now with my family it worked for me and i believe it will work for you, give him a try and follow up, this is a clear truth from a testifier. Thank you Dr BEN once again, if you want to reach him via website http://benherbaltemple.webs.com email: benherbaltemple@gmail.com or call him on +1(310) 220-0075



      My name is NICOLE from USA. I am here to give testimony on how I got my husband back, my husband left me for no reason months ago. He moved in with another woman, I felt like killing myself, my life became very bitter and sorrowful. Then one day a friend of mine told me about a great spell caster that is very good and she said that he told her all about her life history and the problem she is facing, i didn't believe it because I've worked with so many of them and it didn't work. She begged me further so I decided to try this great spell caster called Great Dr BEN . I still didn't believe but inside me i wanted to give a try and as God will have it i used the spell solution he gave me and the next day and I really received a call from my darling husband, He apologized and came back to me. I'm very happy now with my family it worked for me and i believe it will work for you, give him a try and follow up, this is a clear truth from a testifier. Thank you Dr BEN once again, if you want to reach him via website http://benherbaltemple.webs.com email: benherbaltemple@gmail.com or call him on +1(310) 220-0075

      Delete
  2. Bob needs to view Kellyanne Conways work again.

    http://www.cosmopolitan.com/politics/a8674035/kellyanne-conway-bowling-green-massacre-repeat/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Did Kellyanne get confused by the Chattanooga Massacre? Any error by a Presidential spokesperson is important. But, this particular error didn't have much in the way of major policy implications.

      Compare the level of importance to Bush's error about Iraq's WMDs and Obama's error about ACA. Hundreds of thousands of people died because of Bush's error. Millions of Americans unexpectedly lost their insurance or their doctor because of Obama's error. Kellyanne's error didn't have the same level of impact.

      Delete
    2. Didn't read the article, did you David?

      Delete
    3. When the ACA took effect, many Americans lost their existing insurance precisely because their policies didn't meet the minimum standards established by the ACA. In other words, they were junk policies that were mostly purchased in case of a medical catastrophe and weren't going to be much good if they were ever used for that purpose.

      Obama obviously and famously misspoke when he said everyone could keep their existing insurance and doctors if they liked them. He should have clarified that they could keep their policies if they met the minimum ACA standards.

      Delete
    4. David are you confused about the ACA? Did you misspeak? Slip of the tongue? Somehow I think it is more likely you are misleading.

      3:26, Obama did not misspeak about the ACA.

      No Americans lost their existing policies, all policies existing at the time the ACA was enacted were grandfathered in. If policies were changed after ACA was enacted in a way that did not meet ACA standards, then those policies could not continue, but then also those policies were not the ones existing when ACA was enacted.

      http://www.alternet.org/no-obama-didnt-lie-you-about-your-health-care-plans

      Delete
  3. It's worse than depressing; it's full of cliches and sentimentality. For the rubes.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I remember the day I moved to Baltimore from St Paul, MN to work for MPT, I went across the street from my apartment on 34th St to use a pay phone to call my mom and walking towards me was none other than John Waters. I said "Mom, it's John Waters!", he reacted by sneering and then chuckling as he walked past. I never saw him again, but later that year I did go see Serial Mom at the Senator Theatre. I had many odd adventures that year in Baltimore, but when my stint at State Circle ended, I moved to Los Angeles. It has always been a toss up for me deciding which is the worst city I have lived in, between Baltimore and Knoxville, hmmm...

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hello Every One Out Here
    I'm from New Jersey USA. Getting back your husband after a divorce, break up. My husband and I have been through every top reason for divorce; financial struggles, bankruptcy, stressful jobs, becoming parents when we weren't ready (neither one of us would give our kids back just the amount of stress is overwhelming) we fought ALL the time over anything and everything. I threatened divorce all the time. One day after a fight I said I was done and filling. He told me he wasn't in love with me any more. After a day or two of cooling off I realized that divorce is not what I wanted. No, our marriage was not healthy but we had so much going against us an neither one of us were trying. I begged for him to forgive me and that I didn't mean it. He told me he loved me but wasn't in love with me any more. Those words hurt and I believed him. After a month or two he also backed out of the divorce and didn't want to leave me. We also saw THREE different couples counsellors who did not help us at all. (Maybe just bad luck) we still have our moments but not as bad as before. We BOTH read a book called "Love and Respect" i read a great testimony of him that he help many to fight against their divorce marriage and broken relationship so i email him straight ahead at solutionoflovespelltemple@hotmail.com and explain the fight between me and my husband, so he gave me assurance and guarantee that my husband will come back again and forgive me just 2 days after the spell. so that was how Dr. Ogbefi help me out on my divorce problem with my husband he is really good and real man of his words plz if you need any help like my, advise goes to Dr. Ogbefi at solutionoflovespelltemple@hotmail.com, call or And also Reach him on WhatsApp Number: +2349057915709 Thanks Dr. Ogbefi

    ReplyDelete
  6. Are you going through a break-up or divorce? Do you need your Ex back fast? Dnot cry anymore, contact Dr .Goodluck powerful Love spell that work fast now!! I was hurt and heart broken when my Husband breakup with me, and i could not know what next to do again, I love my Husband so much but he was cheating on me with another woman and this makes him break up with me so that he can be able to get marred to the other lady and this lady i think use witchcraft on my Husband to make him hate me and our kids and this was so critical and uncalled-for,I cry all day and night for God to send me a helper to get back my man until i went to Texas in USA to see a friend and who was having the same problem with me but she latter got her husband back and i asked her how she was able to get her husband back and she told me that their was a powerful spell caster called Dr .Goodluck that help with love spell in getting back lost lover back, and i decided to contact the same Dr .Goodluck and he told me what is needed to be done for me to have my man back and i did it although i doubted it but i did it and the Dr told me that i will get the result after 17hours, and he told me that my husband was going to call me and i still doubted his word, to my surprise my husband really called me and told me that he miss me so much, Oh My God! i was so excited, and today i am happy with my man again and we are joyfully living together as one big family and i thank the powerful spell caster Dr .Goodluck for bringing back my man and i decided to share my story on the internet that Dr .Goodluck is best spell caster online who i will always pray to live long to help his children in the time of trouble, If you have any problem contact Dr .Goodluck and i guarantee you that he will help you,Email him at: goodluck05spellcaster@gmail.com ,you can also call him or add him on whats-app: +2349059610309 ,http://goodluck05spellcaster.yolasite.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hello, I am Theresa Williams After being in relationship with Anderson for years, he broke up with me, I did everything possible to bring him back but all was in vain, I wanted him back so much because of the love I have for him, I begged him with everything, I made promises but he refused. I explained my problem to my friend and she suggested that I should rather contact a spell caster that could help me cast a spell to bring him back but I am the type that never believed in spell, I had no choice than to try it, I mailed the spell caster, and he told me there was no problem that everything will be okay before three days, that my ex will return to me before three days, he cast the spell and surprisingly in the second day, it was around 4 pm. My ex called me, I was so surprised, I answered the call and all he said was that he was so sorry for everything that happened that he wanted me to return to him, that he loves me so much. I was so happy and went to him that was how we started living together happily again. Since then, I have made promise that anybody I know that have a relationship problem, I would be of help to such person by referring him or her to the only real and powerful spell caster who helped me with my own problem. email: drogunduspellcaster@gmail.com you can email him if you need his assistance in your relationship or any other Case.

    1) Love Spells
    2) Lost Love Spells
    3) Divorce Spells
    4) Marriage Spells
    5) Binding Spell.
    6) Breakup Spells
    7) Banish a past Lover
    8.) You want to be promoted in your office/ Lottery spell
    9) want to satisfy your lover
    Contact this great man if you are having any problem for a lasting solution
    through drogunduspellcaster@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  8. Dr.Agbazara Your spell worked and brought my husband back to me. You gave me support when I was feeling hopeless. I feel truly blessed to have found your email address. I sincerely hope others will take that leap of faith and let you help them as you have helped me.for those of you who want to contact him reach him on his email address: ( agbazara@gmail.com ) OR WHATSAPP +2348104102662 you will never regret contacting him… He is capable of restoring your relationship and marriage problems like he did for me.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Sincerely i was so crushed when my Husband of 8 years left me and moved to Quebec City to be with another woman.The pains was just too much for me to bear that I couldn’t just bear it anymore. So i had to reached out to the Internet for help until i found out that Dr. Alli was the real deal.. I had tried the whole lot I knew, and with your spells, blessings and extraordinary magical powers, you did all the work for me, which you have guaranteed me positive result in 48 hours, my Ex Husband came back to me and he was remorseful for the whole lot he has done And now my life is balanced and i am happy again. Dr. Alli you do a great service to people. Friends in case you need the help of Dr.Alli kindly mail him on allispellhelp1@gmail.com or +2348100772528 Sir, i will for ever recommend you

    ReplyDelete
  10. Sincerely i was so crushed when my Husband of 8 years left me and moved to Quebec City to be with another woman.The pains was just too much for me to bear that I couldn’t just bear it anymore. So i had to reached out to the Internet for help until i found out that Dr. Alli was the real deal.. I had tried the whole lot I knew, and with your spells, blessings and extraordinary magical powers, you did all the work for me, which you have guaranteed me positive result in 48 hours, my Ex Husband came back to me and he was remorseful for the whole lot he has done And now my life is balanced and i am happy again. Dr. Alli you do a great service to people. Friends in case you need the help of Dr.Alli kindly mail him on allispellhelp1@gmail.com or +2348100772528 Sir, i will for ever recommend you

    ReplyDelete
  11. My name is Richard Adam I'm from UK I want to share my testimony with everyone of how a great and powerful VOODOO priest named DR OGUDUGU helped me get my wife who left me for another man i was frustrated and one day i saw his email online and i quickly emailed him and he said that i should put my total trust in him that my ex will come back so a day later my ex came back and now we are living happily together thank to DR OGUDUGU he is the best spell caster online if you are in need of help here WhatsApp him +2348055304321 or email him at GREATOGUDUGU@GMAIL.COM

    ReplyDelete
  12. My mouth is full of testimonies, Am Mrs Susan. my husband left home for two years to south Africa for a tourist, where he meant this Lady and he was bewitch by the girl my husband refuse to come back home again, i cry day and night looking for who to help me, i read a news paper about a powerful spell caster called DR Ekpiku and i contacted the spell caster to help me get my lover back to me and he ask me not to worry about it that the gods we fight for me.. he told me by mid-night when all the spirit is at rest he will cast a spell to reunite my lover back to me. and he did in less than 3 days my husband came back to me and started crying that i should forgive him, i,m so happy for what this spell caster did for me and my husband..email: Ekpikuspelltemple@live.com
    (1)If you want your ex back.
    (2) if you always have bad dreams.
    (3)if You want to be promoted in your office.or if you have a place to work and you need help
    (5)If you want a child.
    (6)[You want to be rich.

    ReplyDelete
  13. My name is NICOLE from USA. I am here to give testimony on how I got my husband back, my husband left me for no reason months ago. He moved in with another woman, I felt like killing myself, my life became very bitter and sorrowful. Then one day a friend of mine told me about a great spell caster that is very good and she said that he told her all about her life history and the problem she is facing, i didn't believe it because I've worked with so many of them and it didn't work. She begged me further so I decided to try this great spell caster called Great Dr BEN . I still didn't believe but inside me i wanted to give a try and as God will have it i used the spell solution he gave me and the next day and I really received a call from my darling husband, He apologized and came back to me. I'm very happy now with my family it worked for me and i believe it will work for you, give him a try and follow up, this is a clear truth from a testifier. Thank you Dr BEN once again, if you want to reach him via website http://benherbaltemple.webs.com email: benherbaltemple@gmail.com or call him on +1(310) 220-0075


    My name is NICOLE from USA. I am here to give testimony on how I got my husband back, my husband left me for no reason months ago. He moved in with another woman, I felt like killing myself, my life became very bitter and sorrowful. Then one day a friend of mine told me about a great spell caster that is very good and she said that he told her all about her life history and the problem she is facing, i didn't believe it because I've worked with so many of them and it didn't work. She begged me further so I decided to try this great spell caster called Great Dr BEN . I still didn't believe but inside me i wanted to give a try and as God will have it i used the spell solution he gave me and the next day and I really received a call from my darling husband, He apologized and came back to me. I'm very happy now with my family it worked for me and i believe it will work for you, give him a try and follow up, this is a clear truth from a testifier. Thank you Dr BEN once again, if you want to reach him via website http://benherbaltemple.webs.com email: benherbaltemple@gmail.com or call him on +1(310) 220-0075

    ReplyDelete