7.7/10
570
6 user 7 critic

Before Stonewall (1984)

Unrated | | Documentary, History | 27 June 1985 (USA)
The history of the Gay and Lesbian community before the Stonewall riots began the major gay rights movement.
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3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Rita Mae Brown ...
Narrator
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Maua Adele Ajanaku ...
Herself - activist and teacher
Red Jordan Arobateau ...
Himself - writer
...
Herself - university professor
Lisa Ben ...
Herself - former secretary
Gladys Bentley ...
Herself - Nightclub Singer (voice) (archive footage)
Ivy Bottini ...
Herself - former housewife, co-founder N.Y. N.O.W.
George Buse ...
Himself - newspaper reporter, former Army Chaplain
Carroll Davis ...
Himself - performer
Martin Duberman ...
Himself - historian and playwright
Grant Gallup ...
Himself
...
Himself
Barbara Gittings ...
Herself - gay activist
Barbara Grier ...
Herself - publisher
Mabel Hampton ...
Herself - dancer, former domestic worker
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Storyline

New York City's Stonewall Inn is regarded by many as the site of gay and lesbian liberation since it was at this bar that drag queens fought back against police June 27-28, 1969. This documentary uses extensive archival film, movie clips and personal recollections to construct an audiovisual history of the gay community before the Stonewall riots. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Activists for Gay and Lesbian Rights in Historical Context. See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

27 June 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Before Stonewall: The Making of a Gay and Lesbian Community  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(some images in black and white)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Connections

Edited from St. Louis Blues (1929) See more »

Soundtracks

(I've Got a Gal in) Kalamazoo
(uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Lyrics by Mack Gordon
Performed by Kate Smith
Played during the WWII sequence
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not just for a gay audience.
29 June 1999 | by (Marietta, GA, USA) – See all my reviews

This informative and enlightening documentary examines how gay people lived and supported and recognized each other in the days before the landmark disturbance at the Stonewall bar in New York in 1969, an event that gave new impetus to the gay rights movement in the U.S. It features many brave individuals who risked life and limb back in the "dark ages" by even broaching the subject of homosexuality in the open. Many viewers will find revelations here that are fascinating, for example how World War II, of all things, served to end the isolation felt by many gays who fought and served back then. It deserves a wide audience.


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