When: Sun., May 6, 2 p.m. 2018
When Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight won the Oscar for Best Picture in what instantly became one of the most surprising moments in Academy Awards history, it was the first time many people had heard of writer-director Barry Jenkins. Those who follow the indie scene, and especially the African-American indie scene, had picked up on this debut, which premiered at South by Southwest in 2008. Wyatt Cenac and Tracey Heggins play, essentially, “buppies” or black yuppies in San Francisco, where they feel their status as racial rarities among expensive housing, gentrification and hipster culture. As in one of Richard Linklater’s Before movies, they spend the whole movie walking and talking and not quite having a relationship. Jenkins conceived a dialectical movie in which the characters embody different attitudes, foregrounding a discussion of blackness within a context of other issues of youth, politics, art and expression. In conjunction with its Get Reel film series, the McNay revisits the film with a screening hosted by Lisa B. Thompson, Associate Professor of African & African Diaspora Studies at UT Austin.