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Milk (2008)

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The story of Harvey Milk, and his struggles as an American gay activist who fought for gay rights and became California's first openly gay elected official.

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Won 2 Oscars. Another 61 wins & 141 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Harvey Milk
... Cleve Jones
... Dan White
... Jack Lira
... Scott Smith
... Anne Kronenberg
... Mayor Moscone
... John Briggs
... Dick Pabich
... Rick Stokes
... Danny Nicoletta
... Jim Rivaldo
... David Goodstein (as Zvi Howard Rosenman)
... Michael Wong
... Art Agnos
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Storyline

Using flashbacks from a statement recorded late in life and archival footage for atmosphere, this film traces Harvey Milk's career from his 40th birthday to his death. He leaves the closet and New York, opens a camera shop that becomes the salon for San Francisco's growing gay community, and organizes gays' purchasing power to build political alliances. He runs for office with lover Scott Smith as his campaign manager. Victory finally comes on the same day Dan White wins in the city's conservative district. The rest of the film sketches Milk's relationship with White and the 1978 fight against a statewide initiative to bar gays and their supporters from public school jobs. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

His life changed history. His courage changed lives. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, some sexual content and brief violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 January 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Untitled Harvey Milk Project  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,453,844, 30 November 2008, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$31,841,299, 16 April 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As of 2018, features Josh Brolin's only Oscar nominated performance. See more »

Goofs

When Dan White is sitting shirtless looking out the window, you can clearly see a tattoo on his right shoulder blade. Dan White's only tattoo was a shamrock on his arm. See more »

Quotes

Jim Rivaldo: You replaced Scott with a lesbian?
See more »

Connections

Featured in When We Rise: The People Behind the Story (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Takin' My Time
Written by Robert Hackl & Ken Stange
Performed by Victoria Hamilton
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
"I'm 40 and I haven't done anything"

Gus Van Sant's talent and humility allows Harvey Milk to be a the center of this remarkable story without putting himself in front of the camera. Sean Penn shines with a new and extraordinary light as Harvey Milk. His humanity is overwhelming at times. That permanent smile defining his face talks volumes about his faith in people, no matter what. His awareness is filled with truth and innocence, he worries he's about to be 40 and hasn't accomplished anything. Little did he know.The film is constructed brilliantly in a series of vignettes that builds up into a whole fluid narrative. Josh Brolin, as the disturbed Dan White is another standout in a complex and remarkable performance. No cheap shots here. Diego Luna, Joseph Cross and Emile Hirsch are also terrific as the boys around Harvey but it is James Franco who truly gets under your skin. His romantic turn is one of the most compelling gay love stories I've ever seen (and I've seen Brokeback Mountain). Highly recommended!


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