Tuesday, May 19, 2009


I've had a problem with director Gus Van Sant ever since he did that "look at me, I'm so clever and great" abomination of a remake PSYCHO so I will confess to having issues with this biopic though oddly enough not the one much of mainstream America did. The fact the gay community are fighting pretty much the same battle thirty years later underscores the need for Harvey Milk's story to be told yet again. There is no need for me to discuss the politics involved here, many more qualified to do so have and are doing this. What about Sean Penn? Did he deserve the Oscar for his work here. A lot of people, a majority of the mainstream I mentioned, feel he won only because of the "gay" card which I feel is unfair. Penn does some of his best acting work here, maybe not Oscar worthy but damned if his acceptance speech wasn't great. Enough about Penn, though I should mention Diego Luna who was fabulous, let's get back to Van Sant. He delivers a supremely solid film here on all accounts and I was most impressed by being unable to tell if I was watching archival or recently shot footage making MILK one of the best modern period pieces I've ever seen. I still can't forgive him for PSYCHO but I will admit he is one mightyl damn fine film maker and I'm less worried about his doing THE ELECTRIC KOOL-AID ACID TEST after seeing MILK than I was before.


Blogger Candy Minx said...

Yeah, I thought this was a fantastic movie and Gus Van Sant did an awesome job. It's as if he is like the Coen Bros...they all seem to switch between two "types" of movies. One the Coens do hard edge suspense and violence...then madcapness. I know a lot of folks who do not like Coen comedies. (I do tho)

Van Sant has two lines of investigation styles it seems. He follows a traditional sense of narrative...and then his "experimental" narratives. Did you see "Last Days" or "Elephant"? They contrast with the more linear styles of "Private Idaho" and "Drugstore Cowboy"...

the thing is a less strong Van Sant movie is often a lot better than strong films by some directors.

You make good point about how 30 years later the gay politics are still fighting some of the same issues.

Oh it is much more challenging down in the States. Makes me proud of Canada!

3:53 PM  
Blogger Candy Minx said...

p.s I love Diego and James in this one too!

3:53 PM  

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