Windy City Media Group Frontpage News Home
CELEBRATING 29+ YEARS OF Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender NEWS

Search Gay News Articles
Advanced Search
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2015-03-04
Download Issue
  News Index   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds     AIDS @ 32       Marriage
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime

MOVIES Documentary looks at women's-rights movement MOVIES
Documentary looks at 
women's-rights movement
As the hot-button topic of same-sex marriage wiggles its way into the ...

Browse Gay News Index   Browse Gay News Archives
  Windy City Times    Download PDF Issue

Knight at the Movies: The Case Against 8; film notes
by Richard Knight, Jr., for Windy City Times
2014-06-11

facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


As seemingly any politically aware person in Our Community will tell you, the euphoria of election night in November 2008 quickly dissipated with the realization that the anti-gay Prop 8 amendment had passed in California, nullifying and preventing the marriages of same-sex couples throughout the state. It seemed that once again when it came to LGBT rights, we were taking two steps forward, one step back.

Many heeded the ensuing outcry and call for activism the following spring as LGBT activists and political consultants Chad Griffin and Kristina Schake formed the American Foundation for Equal Rights ( AFER ) specifically to lead a legal challenge to overturn Prop 8. In a move that outraged and stymied advocates on both sides of the issue, AFER hired Ted Olson—the high-profile lawyer for former President Bush—to lead the charge. Olson brought on David Boies, his legal opponent in Bush v. Gore, the Supreme Court case that resolved the 2000 election in Bush's favor. The two lawyers had become close friends and were in sync about their passion to see the injustices inherent in the Prop 8 amendment overturned.

The teaming of Olson and Boies—the arch conservative Republican and the liberal Democrat—brought massive media attention to the issue ( no doubt intended ) and intrigued Ben Cotner, a film producer who had befriended the documentary filmmaker Ryan White. The duo had a personal stake in the outcome of the legal challenge—both are gay and Californians—and they decided that there might be something worth documenting as the case progressed. After approaching AFER and winning permission to film, they began.

The fruits of their labors—five years' worth of backstage access to the many twists and turns that the case took—are recorded in their film The Case Against 8. The fly-on-the-wall aspects and the unprecedented access the duo were granted help elevate and enliven what has become a very familiar topic. As Olson and Boies prepare their case with a battery of assistants, the nuts-and-bolts aspects—the mock cross-examinations of the carefully chosen plaintiffs, the strategy sessions, the gains and losses—are as compelling and entertaining as a good episode of Boston Legal.

The movie is also given something that Dustin Lance Black's play 8, which utilizes the court transcripts for its dialogue, could only hint at: the human element. The two couples at the center of the legal challenge—one lesbian, one gay—embody this elemnt, giving the movie its heart and illuminating the lack of fairness that was the basis of Prop 8. We have read the testimony and seen the interviews with Kris Perry and Sandy Stier, the lesbian moms of four sons, and their counterparts, the gay couple Jeff Zarrillo and Paul Katami, who wanted their union legalized before having kids of their own. But watching the quartet in the long years as the case slowly wound its way up the ladder puts an all-too-human face on the issues at hand.

There are the expected scenes of Kris and Sandy interacting with their teenage sons: carpooling, making dinner, attempts at keeping the distracted teens involved—quick overviews of the relationships of both couples and emotionally difficult interviews with the legal team in which their sense of feeling like second-class citizens is palpable. The personalities of the couples, along with members of the legal team, become distinctive and, as always, it's the little details—as when Kris haltingly describes the form letter she and Sandy got putting the status of their marriage in limbo—that resonate. By the time the final ruling comes—which naturally, we know from the outset—the element of suspense is pronounced, as is the exhilaration as the quartet are raced to their respective city halls to legally wed when Prop 8 is rescinded.

The Case Against 8 is showing exclusively in Chicago beginning Friday, June 13, at the Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Ave., and is a must-see. The fight for marriage equality has never been more thrillingly recorded than in this at turns exciting and deeply moving film. http://www.musicboxtheatre.com/features/case-against-8

Film notes:

—Kim Rocco Shields' 20-minute anti-bullying short Love Is All You Need? has received more than 30 million hits, been translated into 15 languages and has been denounced by conservatives ( naturally ). The film turns the issue of gay-bashing around, imagining a world in which heterosexual desire is socially repellent and a justification for violence. Now Shields and her team are endeavoring to expand the short into a full-length feature that GLSEN ( Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network ) is supporting. To help fund the project, they've created an IndieGoGo campaign, which continues until July 2. https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/love-is-all-you-need—2

—"Getting old ain't for sissies," the oft-repeated quote from Bette Davis, is especially apt for the LGBT elderly, who face not only health challenges but discrimination as well. Stu Maddux's excellent 2011 documentary Gen Silent—which focuses on the issue, viewed through the lives of the six LGBT senior citizens portrayed in the film—is being shown on Tuesday, June 17, at 6:45 p.m. at the Center on Halsted, 3656 N. Halsted St. A panel discussion will follow the screening which is being jointly presented by the Center and the Lincoln Park Village. centeronhalsted.org

—The Abominable Crime, Micah Fink's 2013 penetrating documentary that debuted in Chicago at last year's Reeling Film Fest, is now out on DVD. Fink's searing film looks at the violent homophobia faced by gay Jamaicans who, once their sexuality is exposed, must choose between flight or remaining in their homeland and risking their lives. abominablecrimefilm.com

—In celebration of a decade as film critic for Windy City Times, on Thursday, June 19, I'll be reading and signing copies of my new film review collection The Best of Knight at the Movies, 2004-2014 at 7 p.m. at Women & Children First bookstore, 5233 N. Clark St. Windy City Times publisher/editor Tracy Baim will also be there, and she will read/sign copies of her latest book, Vernita Gray: From Woodstock to the White House, about the longtime LGBT activist who recently passed away. Owen Keehnen, the co-author of the Vernita Gray book, will also be present. www.womenandchildrenfirst.com/event/tracy-baim-owen-keehan-and-richard-knight-jr .


facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily
agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here.
Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you
stay on this page, the more you help us.

Theater Spotlight and Critics' Picks 2015-03-04
NUNN ON ONE Michael Urie airs his 'View' 2015-03-04
MOVIES 'Honest Liar' a revealing doc with gay magician 2015-03-04
MOVIES Documentary looks at women's-rights movement 2015-03-04
Local entertainment events: Homestretch; Tret Fure; Louder than a Bomb; African-American films 2015-03-04
Local entertainment: Queen Latifah; Madonna; Gay horror-movie screening; gay marriage exhibit 2015-03-04
Disc and That: Upcoming and recent DVDs 2015-03-03
Entertainment: Wanda Sykes; Gaga; Mo'Nique; Eddie Redmayne 2015-03-03
Alfre Woodard talks 'State of Affairs' before local benefit 2015-02-25
NUNN ON ONE: MUSIC Betty Buckley puts out haunting 'Ghostlight' 2015-02-25
Knight at the Movies: The Circle; Maggie Smith 2015-02-25
Upcoming: Willa Taylor; Knuckles movie;'Louder than a Bomb'; Armatrading; Writers 2015-02-25
Oscars: NPH, Lady Gaga and inclusive remarks 2015-02-23
NUNN ON ONE: MOVIES Siskel board member on Oscars party, fave gay movie 2015-02-18
Upcoming events: On the Red Carpet and Oscars party Feb. 22 2015-02-18
Upcoming events: Internat'l Women's Dance; gays on 'Hate in America'; Knuckles film 2015-02-18
Entertainment news: Ricky Martin; Melissa Manchester; Madonna banned 2015-02-17
Movie celebrating Frankie Knuckles to shoot in Chicago 2015-02-11
Knight at the Movies: A 'Grey' day, Black history and (Oscar) gold 2015-02-11
Music Box gets a new look, addition 2015-02-10
Entertainment: Lance Bass at wedding; Andy Cohen; Lea DeLaria engaged; DGA Awards 2015-02-10
NUNN ON ONE: TELEVISION Trai Byers talks about 'Empire' and the film 'Selma' 2015-02-04
Entertainment news: 'Drag Race'; 'Ghostbusters'; Cumming turns 50 2015-02-03
Joel Grey officially comes out as gay 2015-01-28
VIEWS Historic Black LGBTQ talk on 'Selma' takes place 2015-01-28
Coming up in film and music 2015-01-28
Knight at the Movies: Baby, it's cold outside! 2015-01-28
MOVIES Queer couple addresses Alzheimer's in 'Still Alice' 2015-01-21
Briefs: Entertainment and news 2015-01-21
Jesse Tyler's project; Streisand's honor; an offer to Bieber 2015-01-20
'On the Red Carpet' Feb. 22 at Park West 2015-01-16
Knight at the Movies: Hello, Oscar! 2015-01-14
MOVIES The perfect 'Match': Sir Patrick Stewart reflects on gay roles 2015-01-07
Entertainment: 'Pride' change; 'Brokeback' author; Ricky Martin 2015-01-06
Knight at the Movies: The 10 best LGBT movies of 2014 2014-12-31
Sandra Bernhard; John Waters; Taylor Lautner parties 2014-12-30
MOVIES Director Daniel Ribiero on 'The Way He Looks' 2014-12-30
Knight at the Movies: Into the Woods; Mr. Turner; film notes 2014-12-24
NUNN ON ONE: COMEDY Margaret Cho chats about sex, Chicago, Bob Mould 2014-12-24
Entertainment: Sir Ian's 'Street' moves; Audra on HBO; FCKH8 calendar 2014-12-23





Copyright © 2015 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 

AMPA to SCOTUS: Marriage inequality harms military families
 
Gay Wheaton College student makes waves
 
Latin School teacher devotes entire week to gay history
 
CROI 2015 findings call for bringing PrEP for HIV prevention to scale
 
Military chaplains go anti-LGBT route
 
Windy City Times Current DownloadNightspots Current DownloadQueercast Current Download
Windy City Media Group BlogsJoin Our Email List!Donate Now
Sponsor


Sponsor

  News Index   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds     AIDS @ 32       Marriage
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime



About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.