The staff here at RogerEbert.com and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences agree—Barry Jenkins' "Moonlight" is the best film of 2016. Lucky for those who have yet to experience its poetic filmmaking, or want to see it again, the Oscar-winner for Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Supporting Actor and Best Picture is expanding to 1,500 theaters this weekend. That's the widest release yet for the film, which had previously played at 1,104 locations.
"Moonlight" is also currently available on Blu-ray and DVD, but will always be best experienced in the theater. Jenkins' film is one specifically curated for the five senses, as it tells the coming-of-age story of a young black man coming to terms with his masculinity and sexuality, and it has the power to completely immerse a viewer in a specific, possibly foreign perspective. The Oscar-nominated original score and cinematography deserve to be seen in the loudest, biggest theater possible.
Much has been rightfully made about how historical "Moonlight"'s award reception has been. Part of that importance directly concerns seeing the film in its purest form, especially when your great, great grandchildren ask you about how you saw the first Best Picture-winner from an African-American director, the first Best Picture-winner with an all black cast, the first Best Picture-winner with an LGBTQ story and the lowest-budget Best Picture-winner ever. Don't tell them you saw it on a computer or in-between texts at home. Tell them that you saw this historic Best Picture-winner in the absolute best way possible. (And then go see "Get Out" in theaters after, because that movie must be seen with a crowd.)
Interview with actor André Holland by Brian Tallerico
Interview with Oscar-nominee, actress Naomie Harris by Brian Tallerico
If We Picked the Oscar Winners: "Moonlight" for Best Picture by Matt Zoller Seitz
The Ten Best Films of the 2016: #1. Moonlight by Christy Lemire