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Vito (2011)

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The story of Vito Russo, founding father of the gay liberation movement, author of "The Celluloid Closet," and vociferous AIDS activist in the 1980s.


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Credited cast:
Phyllis Antonellis ...
Richard Barrios ...
Richard Berkowitz ...
Lenny Bloom ...
Jay Blotcher ...
Malcolm Boyd ...
Himself (as Reverend Malcolm Boyd)
Joseph Brewer ...
Lee Brewster ...
Himself (archive footage)
Himself (archive footage)
Marcus A. Conant ...
Himself (archive footage)
(archive footage)
(archive footage)
Michael Denneny ...
Mama Jean DeVente ...
Herself (archive footage)
(archive footage)


In the aftermath of Stonewall, a newly politicized Vito Russo found his voice as a gay activist and critic of LGBT representation in the media. He went on to write "The Celluloid Closet," the first book to critique Hollywood's portrayals of gays on screen. During the AIDS crisis in the 1980s, Vito became a passionate advocate for justice via the newly formed ACT UP, before his death in 1990. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis



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Release Date:

14 October 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Na gej heroj - Vito  »

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Written by Buzzy Linhart and Mark Klingman
Performed by Bette Midler
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User Reviews

A powerful documentary that educates and inspires
1 December 2012 | by (Earth) – See all my reviews

This film is about the life of Vito Russo, an American gay activist who was on the forefront of the gay liberation movement back in the 1980's.

"Vito" tells the life of a man who felt social injustice and oppression, and acts against the tide. With numerous interviews of people close to Vito including his relatives, it vividly portrays what his life was like. The archive footage of the man himself adds depth to the already interesting interviews. I particularly like the coverage on the gay characters in the early days of cinema, these eye opening scenes would otherwise never be seen. The AIDS part is a truly moving portrayal of personal journeys and the societal political climate back then. It appears that everyone in the cinema was moved to tears. I was so engrossed by the film, and I felt the power of the film resonating in the cinema.

As the film pointed out, Vito passed down the history of the gay liberation movement to the new members of the political groups in the last days of his life. This film helps to pass the torch to younger generations. If not for the forerunners who laid down the path, life would have been so different now. I hope "Vito" would inspire people to fight against injustice and oppression.

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