The Light of the Moon Movie Review :
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After a New York City woman is sexually assaulted while walking home one evening, she struggles to accept the truth and rediscover the intimacy within her relationship.
A rape victim has a couple of equally unattractive choices when faced with that question. She can lie, and thus participate in the sickness of a culture which deems a rape victim somehow responsible for the rape if she’s been drinking. Or she can tell the truth, and wait for the inevitable character assassination. Shame spiral to follow: If only I hadn’t gotten drunk that night … if only I hadn’t danced with that guy … if only I hadn’t walked home alone … What comes after the rape is almost worse than the rape itself. Jessica Thompson’s film “The Light of the Moon” (her first as writer and director) is a nuanced and sensitive exploration of the many ways rape affects a person’s life, even as she tries like hell to get back to normal.
Bonnie (Stephanie Beatriz) and her boyfriend Matt (Michael Stahl-David) live in the Bushwick area of Brooklyn. They both have demanding careers, and the first scene of the film shows Matt begging off from a night out with Bonnie and her co-workers. (This opening scene is pretty rough around the edges. There’s a lot of dead air, and Bonnie and Matt’s relationship appears to be made up of rolling their eyes at each other in generalized sarcastic attitudes. I felt my heart sink. But stick it out through the first scene. The film finds it footing soon after.) Then follows a montage of Bonnie having a blast with her friends, pounding down shots and dancing at a club. On the three-block walk home to her apartment, a guy drags her into an alley and rapes her. Bonnie staggers home, face bloody, and thinks twice before getting in the shower. She puts her underwear and the piece of Kleenex she used to wipe between her legs in a plastic bag, actions that tell us she has decided to report it.