Sunday, July 19, 2009
I finally watched this move this weekend and cannot say enough good things about it. I must admit, I was a little too young to realize the situations going on in CA in the late 70s, early 80s. Until this movie, I had never really heard of Harvey Milk. I knew he was a gay icon, but I didn't really know why or what he had done. And there are some things I just can't imagine: like the Castro being anti-gay, people being unable to express their relationships with each other in public, and state-sanctioned discrimination (oh, wait, I can imagine that one! No on H8 BTW Repeal the Defense of Marriage Act). In every movement, it takes someone with more bravery and courage than I can imagine to step out in front of the issues and call them to people's attention. Harvey Milk does that. He spearheads a campaign to put a gay person into a public office (and he runs more times than you can count). He eventually wins a seat as a City Supervisor in SF, only to be shot and killed by another deranged Supervisor at their place of work. (Yeah, talk about justice: see the "Twinkie Defense" if you really want to get pissed off). Harvey inspired a whole host of activists, including the man who set in motion the AIDS quilt, as well as many other people advocating Public Health and Equality for All. I cannot imagine a better time for this movie to come out. Sean Penn is amazing in it, James Franco is (wow) really great. There's a grassroots feeling to this movie, and it was great to see parts of SF re-created for this movie. Altogether, I loved it. It's heartbreaking, heartwrenching, but ultimately has a message of hope. I only hope this movie an inspire others to advocate for themselves, stand up for their rights, and hopefully, soon, we can have equality for all people everywhere. At least, that's what Harvey Milk believes in.