Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Milking It

Milk is a biopic of Harvey Milk, America’s first openly gay person to hold a political office. Gus Van Sant is the mainstream gay director, and as such he’s sort of preaching to the choir. I mean, I don’t expect any hardcore Republicans (for example) to go into this movie and be changed by anything they see there. It is not so much eye-opening as celebratory. Shot in a quasi-documentary style with stock footage, it shows a man who stood up for what he believed in. He just happened to be gay. At the age of forty he said “I haven’t done anything I’m proud of.” And then over the next eight years he did something.
Milk is the movie that everyone tried to make Brokeback Mountain into. No offense to Ang Lee, the other gay director. He made a beautiful film. And what Milk is lacking is that cinematic flare. But as far as making an important film that stands for homosexual issues and has a solid message, Milk is the real deal.
Brokeback garnered a lot of attention for bringing the gay issue into the spotlight. But it wasn’t the milestone people tried to make out it out to be. Milk actually deals with the issues of gay rights straightforwardly.
I guess I’m a choir member.

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