September 22, 2019
  • 3:28 pm Enrollment, Part one: We’re Going to Need a Bigger Boat; Tsunami 3.0 Hits Campus, Enrollment Swells
  • 4:48 pm University Weathering a Wave of New Students
  • 9:21 pm The Bulletin’s Public Records Request Offers Springboard to Launch Gender Equity Discussion at CSUDH
  • 4:27 pm Black is the New Black: Raising the Capital on the “B” Word
  • 10:53 am Guns Up for Arrest: Student advocacy group pushes for CSU No Gun Zones–Including the Police
  • 4:09 pm Staff Editorial: Words on the First
  • 8:42 pm Carson Mayor Blasts Media, Landmark Libel Case in Keynote Address
  • 9:27 am Free Speech Week Calendar of Events Update
  • 6:02 am Food for Thought: 40% of Students are Food Insecure
  • 3:12 pm Academic Senate Rejects CSU GE Task Force & Report
  • 3:06 pm Work To Be Done
  • 5:56 pm ASI Elections: What You Need to Know
  • 8:02 pm CSUDH President Parham Announces Cancer Diagnosis
  • 9:47 am CSUDH Art Professor’s 20-Year Journey Results in First Local Showing of Film
  • 9:13 pm Free Speech or Free Hate area?
  • 9:08 pm CSUDH’s Best & Brightest Shine at Student Research Day
  • 9:05 pm Academic Senate Approves Gender Equity Task Force
  • 12:37 pm When Dr. Davis speaks, Toros Pay Close Attention
  • 3:38 pm Investing in the Future: Dr. Thomas A. Parham Reflects on the Past Eight Months and Contemplates​ the University’s Future
  • 3:24 pm Green Olive to Open By End of Feb; Starbucks Not Until Fall
  • 3:20 pm Gov. Newsom’s Proposed Budget Hailed for Extensive Funding Increases
  • 3:08 pm Out of the Classroom: Labor and Community Organizing Course Aims to Teach Students How to Organize for Social Justice
  • 2:54 pm The Other Route in Professional Sports
  • 9:02 am Hail to the New Chief, CSUDH President Thomas Parham
  • 3:36 pm Career Center Holds Major/Minor Fair
  • 5:34 pm After Unexpected Delay, Undocumented Becomes More Intimate Theatrical Production
  • 1:30 pm What to Expect When You’re Expecting New Buildings
  • 7:00 am The Lightning Rod: Texans-Chargers Preview
  • 8:00 am Catching a Travel Bug at the Study Abroad Fair
  • 11:13 pm Major Challenge Faces Unbeaten Volleyball Team Tonight at Cal State LA
  • 8:00 pm Study Abroad Fair Connects Toros With the World
  • 5:55 pm Toros Fall Sports Previews
Story tips, concerns, questions?

By Julissa James

Staff Writer

When I scrolled through my Twitter feed the night of the 89th annual Academy Awards and saw the live tweets about “La La Land,” the Oscar favorite, being announced as Best Picture I wasn’t surprised.

     When minutes later I saw a tweeted video where an announcer, with the entire “La La Land” cast on stage, made the correction that “Moonlight” had actually won, my lack of surprise turned into heart-swelling joy.

     “Moonlight,” a coming-of-age film by Barry Jenkins, is divided into three parts. It narrates the life of Chiron, a young black man growing up with a heroin-addicted mother in Miami’s tough Liberty City neighborhood. His black identity has blurred his ability to understand his sexuality.

     Not exactly a shoo-in Oscar win, unlike “La La Land,” the Hollywood musical with the star-studded cast. The initial joy I felt for the “Moonlight” victory was quickly overshadowed by disappointment when I realized it was being forced to share its moment with “La La Land.”

     Every headline about the Best Picture winner had something to do with the mix-up.

     “Moonlight” deserves to be celebrated on its own.

     So this is my tribute to a brave film that delves into the taboo subject of being gay in communities of color with brutal honesty.

     There are three actors who play Chiron during the movie’s separate segments:  Alex R. Hibbert in childhood; Ashton Sanders in adolescence; and Trevante Rhodes in young adulthood.

     They gracefully depict the way society shapes a young black man. Through the three parts of the film, you clearly see how Chiron’s identity is being challenged and what that does to his character.

     Mahershala Ali played Chiron’s mentor, Juan. His character was portrayed with a balance of softness and strength. Ali won Best Supporting Actor for his performance, becoming the first Muslim to win an Academy Award.

     “Moonlight’s” score, written by Harvard graduate Nicholas Brittell, created an beautiful contrast to the visuals of this movie, making it more emotional for me as a viewer.

     At times the film was challenging to watch. When we see young Chiron being tormented by his peers, and even his own mother because of his sexuality, I wanted to crawl through the screen and hug him. I wanted to tell him that there was nothing wrong with him.

     When we see teenage Chiron being beaten to a bloody pulp because of who he is, I wanted to tell him that I accepted him. I wanted to tell him that his confusion was normal, that there was nothing wrong with him.

     When we see adult Chiron, hardened by years of rejection into the man he thinks he should be, I wanted to tell him to open his heart. That it’s OK to feel, that it’s OK to be gay.

     “Moonlight” is a relevant and painful, but most of all, important film whose Oscar win was historic.

     It deserves to stand in the light all on its own, separate from the mistake, separate from its runner-up.



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