I literally just read this and spilled my milk (WHOOOOOOOOOOOOAH! Puns are the best) after I read this.
But seriously, though, why aren’t you already excited about the impending release of Milk on DVD? ‘Cos need I remind you? I shouldn’t, but here goes:
Excellent. You’ve been reminded, so let us continue.
Milk stands as a precedent for American cinema. Brokeback Mountain was great, but that movie was also bogged down in the politics of homo-self-loathing. Milk escapes that space and craves for something different. What if we respected ourselves as mere human beings that deserve basic, inalienable rights? What if we spoke out and verbalized a longing for such a respect from the rest of this nation, or any nation, that refuses such a simple, human recognition? Milk, as a movie, doesn’t exist in closets, nor does it even bother to come out of them. It explodes them. For once, cinematically, we begin to get answers to the questions that really matter.
But let’s get serious (if we weren’t enough already).
In a time where the images of homosexuals in mainstream media are constructed by flaming queens and closet cases, Milk stands as a socio-political testament to the notion that we are just as much like you as anyone else. No other film this year has been so pointedly political yet so simultaneously cinematically beautiful. If nothing else, it merges documentary material and original footage as though we were seeing a news broadcast in such a seamless fashion that the walls between documentary and fiction crumble in such a way that you practically forget this isn’t a documentary. Brilliant. And then there’s that Danny Elfman score. Perfection.
I understand that we live in a time where every dollar means so much more (both politically and in our pockets, if nothing else), and that is why I say: buy Milk. Or rent it at the very least. You won’t regret it. Sean Penn is the best. Seriously, give him the Oscar. NOW.
And as for that film? Well, it gives us hope. And hope itself is something to matter in these times.