6 Reasons Why ‘Moonlight’ Deserves to Win All the Awards
This post is also available in: Français
We know who we are rooting for at tonight’s Golden Globes.
Moonlight is a coming-of-age film chronicling the life of a black man struggling with his sexuality from childhood to adulthood. It was just named best film of 2016 by the National Society of Film Critics. A major front-runner this awards season, it has six nominations at tonight’s Golden Globes, including a best director nomination for Barry Jenkins and best supporting actor nods for Naomie Harris and Mahershala Ali.
We are major fans of the lush film and think Moonlight should win all the awards this season. Here are just six of the many reasons why.
1. Diversity needs to win more.
Not only is Moonlight a narrative with African-American and Latin protagonists, it’s also a gay love story. The past two years, all 20 actors nominated in the lead and supporting acting categories were white as last year’s #OscarsSoWhite controversy pointed out. But also, LGBT narratives are ignored as well. Even Brokeback Mountain wasn’t able to win Best Picture at the Oscars, though many thought it should have. Awarding Moonlight with the accolades it deserves will show that these narratives need to be portrayed more often in Hollywood.
2. Naomie Harris’ powerful acting.
“Naomie Harris is a superb performer who deserves a substantial leading role. Frustratingly, Hollywood isn’t (yet) giving it to her, but Moonlight has showed what she is capable of – transformed almost beyond recognition in her powerful role for Moonlight,” points out The Guardian.
3. Oh, and Mahershala Ali’s incredible performance, too.
“Surprising no one, Moonlight also nabbed a Supporting Actor win for Mahershala Ali, widely considered since the film’s debut to be the front runner in the category at the Academy Awards,” reports Deadline. The scene where Little (Alex Hibbert) asks Ali’s character if he is a faggot was a stand out moment in the film, making us want to cheer and cry at the same time. We really want to see Ali walk away with a Globe or Oscar. Hopefully, he snags both.
4. Actually, the entire cast deserves to win.
Moonlight is filled with other incredible talent including Trevante Rhodes ( who just joined the cast of Shane Black’s The Predator), André Holland, Ashton Sanders, Jharrel Jerome and Janelle Monáe. This was Monáe’s big screen debut and while her part is small, her acting is phenomenal. Every cast member portrays their assigned role perfectly. We have a feeling we will be hearing all of these names a lot more in the future.
5. It’s a really important story.
Moonlight is a heart-wrenching coming-of-age story of a human being bullied at school with a drug-addicted mother at ––all while trying to figure out his own identity, too. It sheds light on the topics of queerness, masculinity, and gayness in the black community, hopefully opening many doors and much more needed dialogue on this important subject. It’s not a gay story and it’s not a black story: it’s an everyone story.
6. And it is told absolutely beautifully.
As Unicorn Booty’s Daniel Villareal points out, “The unabashed intimacy between its black and Latino characters struck audiences for its tenderness and rarity on the silver screen, even as its scenes explore age-old themes of identity, masculinity and the pressure to conform.” Intimate and simple, every scene is a powerful moment that is told beautifully with few words. This silence can be deafening to the film’s audience, making it clear why Moonlight needs to be spoken about for years to come.