The Times of Harvey Milk 1984 Criterion Collection
One of the very best films of the 1980s, The Times of Harvey Milk is an absolutely gripping documentary that works on every level. Informative and balanced, it's also funny and exciting, tragic yet ultimately hopeful. It's one of those tiny handful of movies that's undoubtedly changed many lives.

The self-proclaimed "Mayor Of Castro Street", New York stockbroker turned San Francisco activist Harvey Milk rose to prominence as the first openly gay politician elected to public office in California. By the time Milk was elected to a City Supervisor position in the '70s, San Francisco was already a gay Mecca, but the presence of a successful gay politician was such an anomaly at the time that the reporters who covered Milk practically made "homosexual" his unofficial first name. Milk made the most of his brief time in power, successfully fighting an anti-gay-rights initiative and building a grassroots coalition among gays and other groups marginalized by the political mainstream.

The movie opens on November 27, 1978 when Dianne Feinstein, then president of the city's council, made public the chilling news that Milk, along with San Francisco Mayor George Moscone, had been brutally assassinated in their City Hall offices by disgraced former supervisor Dan White.

Through a perfectly integrated combination of local TV news clips, home movies, archival photos, elegant narration and eight well-chosen interview subjects, the film traces the several years leading up to the tragedy.

As its filmmakers point out, the name of the film is The Times of Harvey Milk, not The Life and Times of Harvey Milk. Though it has biographical aspects, the picture is really about a specific time, a specific place of ultimately positive, historical, tumultuous change -- change that came at a very heavy price.


Director: Rob Epstein
Cast: Harvey Fierstein, Harvey Milk, Anne Kronenberg, Jimmy Carter
Country: USA
Genre: Documentary, Biography, History

Extras:

Audio Commentary - an audio commentary with director Rob Epstein, coeditor Deborah Hoffmann, and photographer Daniel Nicoletta. The audio commentary was originally recorded in 2004, but it has been remastered by Criterion to include new material. In English, not subtitled.

Postscript - a selection of comments by political consultant Tory Hartmann, gay rights activist Bill Kraus, Harvey Milk aide Anne Kronenberg, and auto machinist Jim Elliot, which were considered for the film's conclusion but were ultimately not included. In English, not subtitled. (3 min).

Trailer - the original theatrical trailer for The Times of Harvey Milk. In English, not subtitled. (4 min).

Jon Else - filmmaker Jon Else, director of the UC Berkeley documentary program, discusses director Rob Epstein's The Times of Harvey Milk and its message, its structure and history. In English, not subtitled. (20 min).

Two Films, One Legacy - a wonderful featurette in which director Rob Epstein, producer Richard Schmiechen, director Gus Van Sant, actor James Franco, and Harvey Milk friends Cleve Jones, Anne Kronenberg, and Daniel Nicoletta discuss discuss discuss Harvey Milk and its legacy. In English, not subtitled. (23 min).

Harvey Milk Recordings - a collection of video and audio recordings of important events from Harvey Milk's career:
-- "Out of the bars and into the streets" (14 min).
-- Texas Gay Conference five (48 min).
-- Harvey Milk speaks out (3 min).
-- Anti-Proposition 6 election night party (11 min).
-- Harvey Milk's political will (14 min).

Director's Research Tapes - excerpts of draft interviews which director Rob Epstein recorded during the preproduction of the film. In English, not subtitled. (80 min):
-- Scott Smith
-- Bob Ross
-- Amber Hollibaugh
-- Cleve Jones
-- Lillian Sing
-- Hank Wilson

From the Castro to the Oscars - footage from the premiere of The Times of Harvey Milk in San Francisco on November 1, 1984, as well as the Academy Awards, where the film won an Oscar for best documentary feature.
-- Premiere at the Castro Theatre (8 min).
-- A Night at the Oscars (4 min).

The Dan White Case - a collection of clips about San Francisco supervisor Dan White from a November 2003 panel discussion with his attorneys, Douglas Schmidt and Stephen Scherr, and deputy district attorney Jim Hammer, recorded at the University of San Francisco. In English, not subtitled.
-- News Clips (5 min).
-- Panel Discussion (30 min).

Harry Britt, Milk's Successor - an excerpt from a speech Harry Britt, Harvey Milk's successor, delivered at a 2003 event marking the twenty-fifth anniversary of Harvey Milk's assassination. In English, not subtitled. (10 min).

Candlelight Memorial - longtime San Francisco supervisor Tom Ammiano and the late mayor George Moscone's daughter, Rebecca Moscone, address the crowds during a candlelight memorial. In English, not subtitled. (8 min).

BD50 + 2xDVD9 | 1080p AVC, NTSC 4:3 | 01:28:11 | 45.3 Gb + 13.1 Gb + 3% rec
Language: English
Subtitles: English

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