"Philadelphia" may be the movie that changed Hollywood. For so manyyears, they portrayed gays as sissies, but this movie forced them tochange. Tom Hanks gives the performance of a lifetime as AIDS-afflictedlawyer Andrew Beckett, fired from his law firm after they discover hiscondition. Equally good is Denzel Washington as homophobic lawyer JoeMiller, who is forced to ignore his own stereotypes in taking Andrew'scase. Good support also comes from Jason Robards as Andrew's viciousex-boss, Joanne Woodward as Andrew's ever-loving mother, and AntonioBanderas as Andrew's companion.<br><br>Maybe this is just me, but I think that "Philadelphia" was released atjust the right time. Think back to 1993. We had just come out of theReagan-Bush years and we now had Clinton. Maybe he wasn't openlypro-gay, but he did change the military's policy towards gays.Moreover, Tom Hanks and Denzel Washington are analogous to Paul Newmanand Sidney Poitier: the embodiment of the new era under a new president(in Newman's and Poitier's case, it was Kennedy; in fact, those twoco-starred in "Paris Blues" the year that Kennedy became president,much like Hanks and Washington were starring in "Philadelphia" the yearthat Clinton became president). But let's not get sidetracked. This isa great movie, and I recommend it to everyone.
Andrew Beckett, a gay, HIV positive lawyer, is fired from his law firm in fear that they might contract HIV from him. After Andrew is fired, in a last attempt for peace, he sues his former law firm with the help of a homophobic lawyer, Joe Miller. During the court battle, Miller sees that Beckett is no different than anyone else on the gritty streets of the city of brotherly love, sheds his homophobia and helps Beckett with his case before AIDS overcomes him.
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