Themes You Missed in Moonlight
I was sitting in the break-room the other day when Scott came up to me and said "D.MILES!! Moonlight. Talk to me..." We ended up talking for about 10-15 minutes about the film and since I already said I would share my feeling about the film, I decided to post a summary of our convo.
Moonlight covered poverty, mentorship, drug use and abuse, love (in many forms), peer pressure, and growing up in a hostile environment without a father. Aside from the storyline, the cinematography was ridiculous, the score was great and the acting was amazing.
The most obvious themes throughout the film were how your environment has a direct impact on your growth as a person, as well as the effect the relationships you develop during your childhood can have on your future path.
Now until his run-in with Kevin at the beach, I kept saying to myself "how do they know he's gay?" Throughout the movie, the kid simply comes off as an introvert who's being picked on.
Perhaps that's what the writers wanted; for us heterosexuals to see the type of isolation & ridicule that some kids face before they are even aware of why they're being picked on. Chiron was labeled gay by the people around him before he even knew what being gay was (hence why he asked Juan at the table "what's a faggot?").
The impact of his relationship with Juan can be seen once we're reintroduced to Chiron in part 3. He's basically become Juan (Mahershala's character), from selling drugs down to the du-rag. He even tries to test the kid who was selling for him in a manner similar to what Juan did during part 1.
While the layers to the story coupled with great cinematography made the film enjoyable, the overall story is one we've seen/heard far too many times. Kid from the projects whose mom is a crackhead and dad is nowhere to be seen, his only role model is the neighborhood drug dealer and as a result he becomes a drug dealer himself. He became the only positive influence he had.