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Movie Review: Milk

Friday, November 28th, 2008

The critics are loving “Milk“, suggesting that it is the best movie of the year.

Milk is a message movie, but more importantly, it’s an openly proud and entirely self-possessed message movie that wears its progressive rhetoric on its rainbow sleeve.

The distinction is crucial, because when you get right down to the nitty-gritty nub of what director Gus Van Sant has been able to achieve with Milk, it goes beyond teaching a particularly loathsome chapter of American history.

Van Sant, the openly gay film director, has created a universally accessible movie about the birth of the gay movement that is not framed by shame.

Back when this movie was set, in the mid-1970s, shame was an inherent part of the entire gay experience and Van Sant quickly sketches the emotional mood in the opening credit sequence.

Small, plain white titles appear over archival footage of police raids on gay bars. Slowing down the black and white footage to a surreal, dreamy pace, Van Sant sends us through the glass darkly as we watch all sorts of men being loaded into paddy wagons with their hands hiding their faces from public scrutiny.

It’s mind-altering imagery because it’s obvious these men are not criminals, yet truncheon-swinging police are corralling them into custody. Their only crime is hanging out with other men, and being who they are, but back then — and in many places to this day — homosexuality was seen as a legitimate reason to deprive a human being of his or her civil rights.

It’s a prickly issue, and it sits at the very heart of Milk because recognizing gay men and women as social equals without stigma was Harvey Milk’s life mission.

Click on the link below to read the entire indepth review:

Read more….

You can purchase Milk posters at All Movie Replicas.


Milk Movie Posters

Thursday, November 27th, 2008

Release date: Wednesday November 26, 2008
Genre: Drama
Running time: 128 min.
Director: Gus Van Sant
Studio: Alliance Films/Focus Features
Screenplay: Dustin Lance Black
Producer(s): Bruce Cohen, Dan Jinks
Cast: Sean Penn, Emile Hirsch, Josh Brolin, Diego Luna, James Franco, Alison Pill, Victor Garber, Denis O’Hare, Joseph Cross, Stephen Spinella, Lucas Grabeel
Official Site: filminfocus.com/focusfeatures/film/milk
Rating: R for language, some sexual content and brief violence
Available film art: Milk movie posters

Synopsis
His life changed history. His courage changed lives.

In 1977, Harvey Milk was elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, becoming the first openly gay man to be voted into public office in America. His victory was not just a victory for gay rights; he forged coalitions across the political spectrum. From senior citizens to union workers, Harvey Milk changed the very nature of what it means to be a fighter for human rights and became, before his untimely death in 1978, a hero for all Americans. Sean Penn stars as Harvey Milk under the direction of Gus Van Sant in Milk, filmed on location in San Francisco from an original screenplay by Dustin Lance Black, and produced by Dan Jinks and Bruce Cohen.

Milk charts the last eight years of Harvey Milk’s life. While living in New York City, he turns 40. Looking for more purpose, Milk and his lover Scott Smith (James Franco) relocate to San Francisco, where they found a small business, Castro Camera, in the heart of a working-class neighborhood. With his beloved Castro neighborhood and beautiful city empowering him, Milk surprises Scott and himself by becoming an outspoken agent for change.

With vitalizing support from Scott and from new friends like young activist Cleve Jones (Emile Hirsch), Milk plunges headfirst into the choppy waters of politics. Bolstering his public profile with humor, Milk’s actions speak even louder than his gift-of-gab words.

When Milk is elected supervisor for the newly zoned District 5, he tries to coordinate his efforts with those of another newly elected supervisor, Dan White (Josh Brolin). But as White and Milk’s political agendas increasingly diverge, their personal destinies tragically converge. Milk’s platform was and is one of hope – a hero’s legacy that resonates in the here and now. The film’s original score is by Danny Elfman. The costume designer is Danny Glicker and Elliot Graham edited the film. The production designer is Bill Groom and the film’s director of photography is Harris Savides, A.S.C.

You can purchase Milk posters at All Movie Replicas


 
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