"Ugh, really Zchill? A blog about Milk?"
Yeah, it's hard to do a blog about a movie that's so steeped in political discussion without acknowledging it. At short, this movie is about the puritanical roots of America clashing with the "land of the free" Americans. *Spoiler alert* No one wins. I admire this movie for bringing to light a story that, up until this movie was released, I never really knew about.
Enough talk, let's finish this:
What I liked: You know, for how big of a loud-mouth Sean Penn is when he's not acting, he really is a chameleon when he is. He is good in a lot of the movies I've seen him in (Mystic River, Carlito's Way), and my brother really likes him in I Am Sam though I have never seen it. He really does lose himself in the role of the first openly gay publicly elected official, and I would say that he definitely deserved his second Oscar. The supporting cast was really well rounded, but we'll get to the who's who a bit later. If you don't like that tough, it's my blog. The scenery and the feel of the late 70s were really well crafted. And I know it's cliche, but the inter-cutting of authentic footage really made the film steeped in the time frame that it is set in.
What I didn't like: Two guys making out makes me uncomfortable. Yeah, I know I'm a horrible horrible person for getting grossed out at that. I wasn't emotionally invested in the cops' struggle against the homosexuals; I was along for the ride as they were the main protagonists, I just don't like to watch a couple of dudes making out. Don't judge me.
Watch this if you liked: Into the Wild, it has the same vibe, and features the same lead actors: Sean Penn (albeit as the director behind the camera), and Emile Hirsch.
Watch this instead: For my money, there is no nostalgic biopic better than David Fincher's Zodiac. He really captures the look and feel of the time frame without resorting to movie cliches to get his point across. Or maybe I'm just a Fincher fan more than I am a Gus Van Sant fan, who forever will be the guy who cast Vince Vaughn As Norman Bates in the Psycho remake. My blog runs on themes (deal with it), one of them being: you don't &*^% with Alfred Hitchcock. True story. Make no mistake though, Milk is a really well told story and deserves to be seen.
Sean Penn: Has been in the movies I mentioned above as well as the overly pretentious The Thin Red Line (Soldiers aren't poetic, way to fail Terrence Malick), The Game (Preposterous ending, if you defend it you're wrong), and a movie I just got finished watching, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, though he hardly deserves an Oscar for that.
James Franco: He's a great actor who was a scene stealer in Date Night, and was a surprisingly excellent pot dealer in Pineapple Express--a halfway decent movie. But he'll always be the perfect Harry Osborne in Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2 (the third one never happened).
James Brolin: Go see him in No Country for Old Men. He also played George W. Bush in the movie W. Most recently, he was the title role in Jonah Hex, but I heard that was pretty bad.
My pick for this weekend is Scott Pilgrim vs the World. I love Edgar Wright movies (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz) and I think the trend will continue. I'll probably see it tomorrow. I think that The Expendables is aptly named. Burn.
To be continued...