Wednesday, July 11, 2012
The Times of Harvey Milk
Recommended: Yes, interesting and powerful
Watch NOW: http://www.hulu.com/watch/234255
The Times of Harvey Milk is a documentary about the political life and assassination of the California's first openly gay elected official. He won a seat on the San Franscisco Board of Supervisors in 1977. This story was also the basis for the 2008 film, Milk, starring Sean Penn as the titular character.
The doc was released in 1984, only 6 years after the assassinations. The film begins with news footage announcing the assassination of Harvey Milk and mayor George Moscone by councilman Dan White. While some documentaries might leave this information until later in the film, this event was such a significant cultural event.
The film combines interviews with friends and colleagues, photographs, and news footage. The film is also tied together by the narration of Harvey Fierstein. Some of the most interesting interviews are with union supporters. The gentleman interviewed didn't think he would like Milk. But Milk stood not only for gay rights, but for the rights of all minorities: Chinese, senior citizens, and working class unions.
The most powerful image of the documentary was of a candlelight walk after the assassinations. There were candles in the dark across a wide avenue as far as you could see. "It was one of the most eloquent expressions of a community's response to violence I've ever seen."