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Milk

Where to Watch Milk

R
2008

Released in 2008 and directed by Gus Van Sant, the movie Milk pays homage to the life and legacy of Harvey Milk, one of America's most dedicated gay rights activists in the mid-to-late 20th century. Based on real events, the film serves as a poignant portrayal of the struggles and triumphs faced by the LGBTQ+ community during a critical period of civil rights movement in the United States.

Sean Penn, in an Academy Award-winning performance, breathes life into the character of Milk with compassionate gusto. As the first openly gay man to be elected to public office in California, Milk's story is etched in the annals of political history. This biographical film intricately weaves into its fabric the charisma, determination, and vulnerability of Milk, uncovering his fight against stripping away the civil rights of gay individuals.

The film starts in New York City in 1970, where Harvey Milk lives a cloistered life as an insurance executive, expressing his sexuality behind closed doors. The story takes a turn when, on the eve of his 40th birthday, he meets Scott Smith, portrayed by James Franco, who becomes Milk's lover and the force behind the radical transformation that sees Milk shifting to San Francisco.

The cultural and political hubbub of San Francisco's Castro District forms the backdrop of Milk's burgeoning political career. From running a small camera shop out of a dilapidated storefront, Milk begins to rise as a figurehead of an angered and oppressed community. He runs for public office no less than three times before finally getting elected as a city supervisor in 1977, symbolizing an important victory for the LGBTQ+ movement.

Josh Brolin delivers a memorable performance as Dan White, another city supervisor and Milk’s eventual political adversary. The two men have starkly different views for the future of the city, setting the stage for a fiery conflict that underpins the latter part of the film. The complex character dynamics and tension between Penn's Milk and Brolin's White add depth and drama to the film.

The supporting cast also includes Emile Hirsch and Diego Luna. Hirsch portrays Cleve Jones, a young man who becomes one of Milk's closest political advisers and a significant activist in his own right. Luna, on the other hand, plays Jack Lira, Harvey's troubled lover in the latter part of his life. Both actors add layers of emotion and authenticity to the story, ensuring that the film portrays all aspects of Milk's life, political and personal, in a respectful and engaging manner.

One of the highlights of the film is its meticulous attention to authenticity. Dustin Lance Black's Oscar-winning script intricately blends actual archival footage with recreated scenes, blurring the line between reality and cinematography. This attention to detail extends to the film's aesthetic as well, with the costume and set design effectively pulling viewers back into a transformative era marked by colorful protests and picket signs.

Milk is a film of raw emotion and powerful dialogue which serves as a milestone in LGBTQ+ cinema. Through compelling storytelling and strong, nuanced performances, the movie successfully sheds light on a man whose life and death had far-reaching implications and whose legacy continues to resonate even today in ongoing conversations about equality and civil rights.

The movie serves as both a heartfelt tribute to Harvey Milk's life and an informative history lesson, capturing the essence of 1970s San Francisco and its thriving gay community. Despite the jets of color and humor injected into the narrative, the film never loses sight of its central mission: to commemorate a crucial chapter in the fight for gay rights.

Milk's life is an anthem to hope and determination, a story of a man refusing to shrink away in the face of adversity, and standing up to fight for what he believes in. The film masterfully encapsulates his spirit, offering an engaging and important narrative that resonates well beyond the LGBTQ+ community and touches upon broader themes of courage, activism, and social change. This makes Milk not only a captivating biopic, but also a significant historical portrait extruding humility, love, and persistence.

Milk is a History, Drama movie released in 2008. It has a runtime of 128 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 7.5. It also holds a MetaScore of 83.

How to Watch Milk

Where can I stream Milk movie online? Milk is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at Amazon Prime, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD, Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Milk for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.

7.5/10
83/100
Director
Gus Van Sant
Stars
Sean Penn, Emile Hirsch, Josh Brolin, Diego Luna, Alison Pill, Victor Garber, Denis O'Hare, Joseph Cross, James Franco
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