CA Podcast #58 - The "Moonlight" Episode

Discussion in 'Podcasts' started by Nick Delmacy, Oct 21, 2016.

  1. Nick Delmacy

    Nick Delmacy is a Verified MemberNick Delmacy Da Architect
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    Brehs, we present to you a new episode of the CYPHER AVENUE PODCAST where you’ll hear us give updates, engage in heated topic debates, interviewing interesting homosexual men of color and us verbally adding on to the articles posted on the website. The episodes will be available in four ways: You can listen to them on the site, watch on YouTube, download a MP3 version or subscribe to us on iTunes or YouTube for automatic updates!

    In this podcast, Cypher Avenue co-founders Octavius Williams and Nick Delmacy give a SPOILER-FREE review of the new critically acclaimed LGBT film, “Moonlight.” Then (at the 33:30 mark), they dive into spoilers to have a deep dive discussion of the film as well as tell never-before-told stories about their own lives dealing with Bullies and their Sexuality when they were teenagers.

    MP3 VERSION:









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    Read the whole post here.
     
    #1 Nick Delmacy, Oct 21, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2016
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    love this sooooooo much. highlight of my week, Thanks guys!
     
  3. Dante

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    Will be checking this out indeed.
     
  4. acessential

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    Definitely gonna listen to this. Gotta let my own thoughts marinate first though.
     
  5. hannibal

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    @Ockydub masculinity was front and center. His mom pretty mich said so in the beginning
     
  6. OckyDub

    OckyDub is a Verified MemberOckyDub I gave the Loc'ness monstah about $3.50
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    What was said and what was displayed is two different things. Nothing about Chiron on screen in Act I or II made him appear effeminate.
     
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  7. acessential

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    I still haven't listened to this podcast. I'm about to. But this is something that I noticed too. The dudes would bully him and call him names, but I felt it was moreso because he was just weird and kinda awkward and not because he was effeminate. Let me actually listen to this though before I start repeating stuff that was already said.
     
  8. hannibal

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    Did you not see his dancing or his running? Even the way he limp wristed was feminine. He was so quiet that I dont think people noticed. It was visual
     
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  9. hannibal

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    And those child actors,bless their hearts, they have great performances but there's no way they grew up to look like Black
     
  10. OckyDub

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    Will try to notice this when I view the film again. I didn't see this. Did you notice any of those mannerisms with Chiron in act II
     
  11. OckyDub

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    This child actors in act I and II looked similar. Act III, I'm like..."who dis nicca?"
     
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  12. hannibal

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    No. But I think that may have been the point. He became harder in each chapter. He was definitely submissive to Kevin but I won't say that was feminine.
     
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  13. acessential

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    *Potential Spoilers*

    Okay I listened to the podcast and I will reiterate what I said earlier. I do think his bullying was based on a critique of masculinity. But, not because he was definitely effeminate. As kids, Kevin tells Chiron that he needs to be hard and not let dudes bully him. They then engage in wrestling. Kevin then says, "See, I knew you weren't soft." That to me is a very specific depiction of how masculinity is supposed to operate for all black boys in that particular community. So because Chiron wasn't quick to basically beat up other kids and rough house, he immediately fell outside of those masculine norms and was labeled a "faggot."

    As far as the dance scene is concerned, I didn't see his movement as particularly any different than any of the other kids dancing around him, male or female. (I plan to watch the movie again, so I'll double check) I think it was moreso about his enjoyment of it. Aside from his short conversation with Kevin, that seemed to show the only time where he was happy being a kid.

    And if we want to talk about realistic depictions, which is what the filmmakers were definitely going for, it doesn't make sense for Chiron to transition from this effeminate little kid to this masculine adult. Let's be real. Effeminate kids are still going to have those same effeminate traits as adults. Even if it becomes more subtle. Chiron isn't limp wristed as an adult. But he still has some of the same character traits he did as a kid that led to his bullying. He's still quiet. He's still reserved. That shows continuity and that he's the same person. He may dress differently. But that's something that's easily changed and more believable. But it's more difficult to change your mannerisms and who you are internally.

    I'm not saying that they shouldn't have portrayed Little as an effeminate little kid. But I don't think that was the overall intention of the filmmaker. It was more subtle. They wanted to show how even slightly going outside of strict gender norms, is enough to label you as gay.
     
  14. OckyDub

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    Sentiments shared! Elements or more details of exactly this thinking was/is going into my essay about the film.
     
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  15. acessential

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    I will also say masculintiy can definitely be a performance. But people have this assumption that any dude can hit the gym and grow a beard and suddenly become masculine. Or that a dude can put on hot pants and sing Britney Spears and become feminine. Yes those are societal definitions, but that doesn't change the nature of the person.

    A feminine dude is going to be feminine no matter what he wears. A masculune dude is going to be masculine no matter what he wears. It's noticeable. It's behaviors and mannerisms.

    Can you imagine someone like the Rock singing Britney Spears? He would be doing a feminine performance, but he would still be innately masculine. Likewise, do y'all remember Chris Crocker? The "leave Britney alone" kid? He's actually a stereotypically attractive dude now. He has facial hair, obviously goes to the gym. But to me he's still a noticeably feminine dude. You can just....tell.

    My point being, I don't think Chiron would have been able to pull off the masculintiy so well as an adult if he wasn't already "masculine of center." If he had always been this feminine dude, I would not have found his transition into adulthood believable at all.
     
  16. OckyDub

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    ALL OF THIS!
     
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  17. hannibal

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    Guess we gonna have to agree to disagree. I saw a femin Little. On the other hand, the most feminine person to me aas the main bully.
     
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  18. acessential

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    Yo. I thought I was the only one who noticed something. As soon as the bully started talking in the classroom scene, I was like, "He sounds kinda........" I'm gonna have to pay attention to this too when I watch it again. For a second I thought there was gonna be a plot twist where he tries to hit on Chiron.
     
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  19. Nick Delmacy

    Nick Delmacy is a Verified MemberNick Delmacy Da Architect
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    I agree with this. The boys from my youth who were slightly feminine have since become slightly feminine adult men, or fully feminine adult men.

    One needs to look no further than Web Series like Freefall (no offense, first example to come to mind) to see inbetween gay men unsuccessfully attempting to pull off Hypermasculinity.

    Regardless, as I said in the podcast, the film seems to be more about Bullying and Masculinity than struggling with Sexuality.

    I'll give Freefall director Lamont Pierre credit that his films are actually "gay" and not afraid or timid to show our male Sexuality like Moonlight was afraid...this film was about Masculinity more than Sexuality. Lamont does the opposite, which I appreciate.

    I've had more time to digest the film and I have to admit that it really neglected the gay side of the struggle to explore the weakness/strength masculinity theme. The homosexuality is kind of an afterthought tacked on to the story like the rushed third act.

    Would a heterosexual film have to hint at Sexuality so much? Especially in a coming of age film? A film about straight people wouldn't have pulled so many punches. When I was a Gay youth, I didn't fantasize about boys having sex with other girls (as depicted in Moonlight)...I fantasized about them being intimate with me. Even if I didn't think they were gay as well.

    Also, I need to see the film again but the more I think about it the more I dislike the third act. It seemed rushed, as if Trevante was only available for a limited amount of days or they ran out of budget to shoot all of his scenes.

    A guy that looks like Trevante, in ATLANTA of all places, supposedly hasn't been touched since the 10th grade?! Judging by casual interactions with his drug partner in the car that he picked up, he clearly doesn't have the same level of shyness with other men that he had before. He also has confidence, muscles, money and power now, if anything he should have had many more DL men hitting on him by now.

    Logically this act makes no sense. He has unrequited love for Kevin? Why? Because he once gave him a hand job? Said a few kind words to him? But he also kinda helped ruin his life even more than it already was.

    The whole thing felt rushed. Maybe there was more connective tissue in the source material.

    One side question I wondered is would Black be as quick to drive all the way from ATL to MIA if Kevin called and he had a developed effeminate voice? The same convo, just with the voice of a Kevin who was now more "free" in his bisexuality.

    Maybe wouldn’t have made a difference character-wise, but there def was a clear decision made by the director to not have obvious gay male femininity displayed in the film.
     
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  20. hannibal

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    I need to go back and verify that he had on colored contacts lol. And I was so nervous they were gonna go the pedophelia route with Juan. I was so relieved that they didn't. This should have been a live podcast @Ocky because I got stuff to say about it.
     
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  21. hannibal

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    Look, Little was a little gay boy. It was very visibly obvious. I'm not sure what ya'll aren't seeing. It was more subdued in Chiron, but he was still passively submissive. I agree with you on Black. Looking like that..in ATL...and you ain't touched no man yet you were pretty much coming onto one of your goons a scene ago? But I will say...the 3rd act had a lot of unspoken moments that were strong, like when Kevin started playing the song that made him think of Black and he started pulling at his own skin as if he was afraid of how black would react (although he jerked him off a few years prior)...but still. it was gut wrenching in the uncertainty.
     
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  22. Nick Delmacy

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    No doubt. I'm not saying there wasn't great filmmaking and acting in there, I'm just saying that in relation to the rest of the film, the third act felt rushed and out of place with gaps in character logic.
     
  23. hannibal

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    I don't disagree. A handjob from 10 years ago ain't gonna make me drive to Miami.
     
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  24. Nick Delmacy

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    RIGHT! If "Black" was real and living in Atlanta, he would in actuality be on Jack'd with a blank profile and a shirtless, headless torso avatar...getting hella DMs.
     
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  25. OckyDub

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    @hannibal I will make a point to have a second round table podcast after the film has had a national release. You are welcome to join (more info to come soon). I really do think all the points here are valid and have value with @acessential observations being a view that I feel those in the mainstream queer audience don't realize when they make comments like, "he's faking masculinity or attempting to act straight".
     
    #25 OckyDub, Oct 22, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2016
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  26. hannibal

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    Perhaps I'm slow but I though the picture was Chiron and his mom
     
  27. acessential

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    *SPOILERS*

    I saw it a second time. (Yes, it's a slight obsession) And I stand by what I said earlier.

    I paid close attention to his mannerisms and I still think the brunt of his bullying came about because he didn't fit this "let's hit each other and rough house" gender role and not specifically from his mannerisms. Plus the kids knew his mom was a crackhead and his clothes were garbage. Did y'all see his shoes in the second half?

    And the bully was definitely super flamboyant. Especially in both of the classroom scenes. His attitude and facial expressions were flashing gay to me. I think that might have been intentional by the filmmakers. It would lead the audience to suspect that one of the most homophobic dudes is actually gay on the low.

    Another thing I think folks haven't mentioned is how awesome Juan's character is. He's definitely the stereotypical version of black masculinity, but he also has a very nurturing side. And notice how when he had the conversation about homosexuality with Chiron, he didn't even trip about it and was actually very supportive. That's not something you would expect from someone like him.
     
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  28. OhSheit

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    Dude, that was the Jack'd moment of the film that I thought was going to happen lol. I seriously thought the third act was going in the DL direction with Black, and SB3 had to remind me that while Black was driving to Miami he was actually going to see Kevin. When he pulled up to the diner I had actually asked him "dude or chick?" because I thought he was potentially seeing a female instead. I must have dosed the fuck off for a second, I don't know how I missed that he was going to see Kevin.

    Act 3 was the weakest but the diner scene had me cheesin! This meme came to mind the rest of the night:
    [​IMG]
     
  29. SwagJack

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    He was initially just going to Miami see his mom.
     
  30. SwagJack

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    The third act was the least fleshed out of the tryptich. I think the character logic flaws that you spoke to are probably a result of a few things. The main one I'd venture to say is that Barry wrote the script. Even though the source material was written by a gay Black man, Barry's lens is different and may not have been able to focus on those nuances. Also, I think he may have been a little reticent about gay sex scenes. Probably several reasons behind that.
     
  31. Dante

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    I am glad they did not, bc the homophobes would have threw a I Told You So party around the world. Not like they are going to watch the movie aka gay shit, but that would have sealed the deal on the "gay agenda".
     
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  32. hannibal

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    Id like a discussion on this movie as opposed to Birth Of A Nation whereas this film came out of nowhere and took the oscar worthy mantle from a film made by someone who doesnt appear to like gays. The irony
     
    #32 hannibal, Oct 23, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2016
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  33. Nick Delmacy

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    I have a feeling that this will be the only LGBT space that will have a frank discussion on both the pros and cons of the film. Just about every other place will just talk about how "brilliant" it is. The fems will relate to the bullying and the masc dudes will relate to the diner scene, making them all think it speaks to them.
     
  34. Nick Delmacy

    Nick Delmacy is a Verified MemberNick Delmacy Da Architect
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    I take that back already:

    "...Sure enough, Moonlight has become the new Precious, the vision of black pathos that adds emphasis on gay-bashing so that viewers can feel good about how politically-correct and sentimental they are, too.

    I dare say that gays and viewers of color should respond more critically." - Armond White

    'Moonlight' and the Myth of the Pathetic Queer

    @Ockydub
     
  35. hannibal

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    I read the article...I didn't get it. I wanted to agree to an extent...but he merely confused me.
     
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