When We Rise (2017)
9/10
Inspiring and Sometimes Difficult Mini Series to Watch
27 March 2017
When We Rise is a return of the mini-series, something that used to be common place on the "big three" TV networks. It's based on true people and events that happened during the "LGBTQ revolution" that started in the mid 70s and finally concluded in 2015, when gay marriage was deemed the law of the land.

The series focuses on three different characters and story lines. The first is Cleve Jones, who at the beginning is an 18-year-old who finally moves out of his Arizona home after telling his parents he's gay. His dad wants him to get "conversion therapy", which Jones refuses. He heads to San Francisco and struggles surviving, couch surfing and taking odd jobs in order to eat. Eventually, he finds his way and finds a job with Harvey Milk's team. After Milk's assassination, he gets involved in politics and the fight to stop AIDS. The second is Roma Guy, a lesbian who moves from Maine to San Francisco. She initially is involved in the women's liberation movement, but becomes a key cog in connecting the bridge between that and the gay rights movement, befriending men, who many women disdain and ignore in their fight for rights. The last is Ken Jones, a black gay man who fought in Vietnam. He is discharged and moves to San Francisco to help with race relations. He, too, moves into the gay rights movement, adding the race factor into it and showing it's not just a white issue, but an issue for all races. The characters grow up, age and become further involved with the gay rights movement as they get older.

It's inspiring and not always easy to watch, as we see them get hurt by violence, hate, AIDS and much more. You learn that San Francisco, the former home of the hippie movement, actually wasn't receptive to the gay movement at first and pushed strongly against it at the beginning. You learn that this fight to get close to equal rights as possible was over 40 years, and still there are issues they face today.

If you want an eye opening experience learning just how hard of a fight equality is, check out When We Rise.
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