Sunday, January 4, 2009


I never cry.
I was a sensitive child who often got yelled at for crying.
I never cry at movies.
I am sentimental, often get teary at things, but never full on cry.

My friend Pat Fusco saw the movie Milk yesterday and one of the things she mentioned was the amazing diversity of the ages of the people watching. Today I saw Milk, and immediately thought of that as well.
Here is my history. I write social issue plays that maybe wouldn't play everywhere. One of them has two boys kissing at the end of it. One is a musical based on the AIDS quilt. I write these plays to amend the fact that I was once a teenager and I once yelled "Fag" from cars. I was phobic...or pretended to be. To be cool. But now I tend to be a poster boy for equal rights. I think partially, you don't exist in theatre without knowing people from all walks of life, and if you dont...well you may end up playing that which you don't understand,and it is your responsibility to get it right.
Harvey Milk was a hero. He spoke up for human rights the way King spoke up, the way Cesar Chavez spoke up. The movie is profound in it's capturing of an era, of it's "where it all happened" quality. The film pulses with life and humor and dignity. Sean Penn just washes away as soon as the film starts. He is a miracle,especially since he is a fairly surly person in public. The supporting cast creates a family, the direction is wonderfully artistic, but stays on task.
Great movie. In the film the focus is upon Milk trying to defeat Prop 6, a law that would eliminate jobs for gay teachers...The film shows Milk as David vs Goliath, one who is not always interested in winning, but in making his position heard. And I thought to myself...if only 6 months earlier. I, at one point,passionate man that I am stated fairly loudly when the religious right was speaking about safety of their children said "Isn't that fucking deja vu".
       The script and the construction was fantastic,jumping to Milk at a tape recorder,recording a thing in case he were to die.  When the inevitable happens to Milk,he ultimate says "You gotta leave em with hope".  
I thought of my friends Mark and Mark,married legally .  I thought of all those kids that come out,and those who commit suicide because it is thought of as wrong.  I thought of that gut wrenching moment when you think things are better,things are much better and you then realize you are living in a state that is going backwards in it's voting practices.
The credits rolled

and I wept

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