Writer/director Barry Jenkins’ upcoming drama Moonlight may not have been on your radar, but it sure as hell should be after today. A24—a studio that has a knack for bold and refreshing storytelling—has unveiled the first trailer, and it’s kind of spectacular. The film chronicles the life story of a young man across three defining chapters in his life, with three different actors playing the character as a young boy, a teenager, and a twentysomething. The film looks to explore issues of masculinity, sexuality, and family through the eyes of this one character, with Naomie Harris, Mahershala Ali, and The Knick standout André Holland looking to turn in some stellar supporting performances.
This doesn’t appear to be your standard “coming-of-age” drama, and by exploring homosexuality through the lens of an African-American male, Jenkins looks to be traversing touchy subject matter that has rarely been explored in great detail. Moreover, from a visual standpoint, this thing looks stunning.
Moonlight is set to screen as part of the Toronto International Film Festival and the New York Film Festival so we’ll likely hear more about the picture in the coming weeks, but for now this under-the-radar drama sure looks to be a must-see, not to mention a potential awards contender.
Watch the Moonlight trailer below. The film opens in New York and Los Angeles on October 21st and also stars Janelle Monáe, Trevante Rhodes, Alex R. Hibbert, Jaden Piner, Ashton Sanders, and Jharrel Jerome.
Here’s the official synopsis for Moonlight:
MOONLIGHT is the tender, heartbreaking story of a young man’s struggle to find himself, told across three defining chapters in his life as he experiences the ecstasy, pain, and beauty of falling in love, while grappling with his own sexuality.
Anchored by astonishing performances and the singular vision of filmmaker Barry Jenkins, MOONLIGHT is a groundbreaking exploration of masculinity-a sensual, intoxicating piece of cinema that uncovers deep truths about the moments that define us, the people who shape us most, and the ache of love that can last a lifetime.