Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Milk Does a Gay Cinephile Good

Below is the first trailer for Gus Van Sant's promising biopic Milk, based on California's first openly gay elected official and all around gay rights activist Harvey Milk. It looks distinctly less mood-driven than Van Sant's more recent films like Paranoid Park, but his conjuring of seventies-era Castro Street and similar-era pornostaches looks to create an altogether different atmosphere. We're in assured hands with the always contemplative Van Sant and a solid cast that includes Sean Penn, James Franco, Josh Brolin and Emile Hirsch.

Which ties into one of next year's likely highlights: Ang Lee's Taking Woodstock. It also happens to have Emile Hirsch on the sidelines and yet another gay-themed historical bent. Lee's making the film alongside longtime collaborative partner James Schamus, who produced something called Brokeback Mountain. Maybe you've heard of it... The true story follows Elliot Tiber, a gay interior designer (redundant) in the Catskills who helps make Woodstock the counter-culture event of the decade. Notable elements include an encounter with a transvestite played by Liev Schreiber, and Tiber's affair with a closeted married man, played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan. Lee's casting agent knows exactly what we want to see!

That's all very good news, right? Now for the bad news.... Poor Emile, the ads were wrong!

Milk DOESN'T do a body good.

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