FOLLOWING their success last year at the Film Society of the Year Awards, the local award-winning Ayr Film Society is delighted to announce their new season’s programme.

The society aim to bring some of the best of world cinema to the local community with a varied programme of films not usually seen on the local commercial circuit.

These are screened at Ayr Town Hall on a Thursday evening from September to March, on the big screen. Doors open 7pm with screenings commencing at 7:30pm (apart from Tamfest and Fokus).

All in all there will be the opportunity to attend 29 screenings at the remarkable cost of £60 (or £30 if you are a student of any age or an individual under 25) – what a bargain. Individual tickets can be purchased, per screening, at £5 (or £2 if a student or under 25).

Starting on Thursday, September 14, with the Oscar winning Moonlight from USA - The protagonist of “Moonlight” reflects the conflicted and fluid masculinity of young African-American men in the United States, even in just the way he’s presented. The film is divided into three chapters— “Little,” “Chiron” and “Black”—the three names used to refer to the same person that we follow from childhood through adolescence to adulthood.

The film starts with Chiron as a boy, referred to by his bullies as “Little”. We meet this youngster running, trying to hide in a boarded-up apartment from the kids who want to beat him up. Little is found there by Juan, a local drug dealer. Juan takes the kid out to eat, even bringing him back to his place, where he meets his partner Teresa.

Little could use this makeshift family. Juan sees something good in Chiron and wants to help this quiet boy, even as he provides the product that’s ruining his home life.

The film jumps to Chiron as a teenager, dealing with more intense bullying and questions about sexuality. These are the years in which everyone claims to be sleeping around and a young man like Chiron struggles to find himself, especially now that all semblance of a normal home life is gone.

He literally has nothing, and it takes kindness from his friend Kevin to bring him comfort. But even that is turned in a time, place and age in which compassion is sorely lacking, when young men believe that violence is the answer to what will make them feel better or allow them to fit in.

Finally, we meet Chiron as a young adult. Kevin reaches out to a very-different Chiron, and the film’s themes coalesce in a surprisingly emotionally resonant way without monologues or heavy-handed melodrama. In a sense, “Moonlight” is a coming-of-age story about a boy often overlooked by society, that little kid not cool enough to hang with the bigger ones and without the support of a family to keep him from simply disappearing into the night.

The trio of performances that make up Chiron are perfectly calibrated by Jenkins, who directs them to feel not like imitations of each other but express growth. We can see the sad eyes of Chiron as a boy reflected in Chiron as a man. “Moonlight” could have easily felt episodic, especially with three actors playing the same character, but it’s stunning how much it never falters in that regard.

While there’s memorable dialogue in “Moonlight,” it’s what’s unsaid that really resonates. It’s the look of a morally complex father figure when a child asks him why other kids call him a bad word. It’s a nervous glance between two young men who know something is a little different about their relationship but society has given them no words to express it. And it’s in the final scenes of the film that “Moonlight” makes its greatest impact.