Monday, December 22, 2008
I know, I know! the movie came out a while ago, but I felt compelled to write this review on Milk because I think it's one of the most important films released this year. Now mind you, I didn't say "the best" because lets face it, I don't think ANYTHING can top the Dark Knight (then again, i haven't seen the wrestler yet). So before you all start your bitching, hear me out.
Milk is the story of Harvey Milk, who is masterfully portrayed by Sean Penn. He was a gay man who ultimately just wanted to be accepted for who he was and his lifestyle choices. He wanted gay and lesbian people to have the same rights as straight people. He had a powerful influence in the area he lived in in San Francisco, so he used that popularity and influence and decided to run for the office of city supervisor. After numerous attempts, he achieved enough of a following to win. He was in office for 11 months before he was murdered by a fellow city supervisor, Dan White, who was played by Josh Brolin. Brolin did an excellent job portraying the insecure White. There is also an amazing supporting cast: James Franco plays Scott, Harvey's first love interest and Diego Luna plays Jack Lira another love interest. Also in the film is Emile Hirsch playing Cleve Jones, who played a vital role in the gay rights movement.
The film is very much in usual style of Gus Van Sant's movies: gritty, sometimes dark, the camera work gave you the feeling like you were pretty much in the crowd watching Milk give his famous "Hope Speech" or one of the guys in the camera shop listening in on what the campaign plans were and his male leads are always spot on. I think this is Van Sant's best film, then good will hunting, elephant, and finally my own private idaho.
I highly recommend everyone watch this. It's moving, a "think" movie, it makes you want to get out there and make a difference in your life and your community and the acting is phenomenal.
To hear parts of THE Harvey Milk's "Hope Speech", check out the link below.