S2 E15 Guest: filmmaker David Millbern

The Bill Alexander Show

15-02-2023 • 42 mins

On this episode of The Bill Alexander Show, Bill talks with Emmy-winning actor-producer David Millbern about his documentary,  the critically acclaimed "100 Years of Men in Love: The Accidental Collection" and it's newly discovered imagery that is already reaching iconic stature, which is a documentary focusing on a unique, moving and joy-filled collection of vintage photographs of men in love from the 1850s to the 1950s, taken when male partnerships were often illegal, the photos were found at flea markets, in shoe boxes, family archives, estate sales, and old suitcases.

"100 Years of Men in Love” shines a light on some of that history through a selection of photographs collected by Hugh Nini and Neal Treadwell stumbled upon an old photograph of a gay couple by random and then turned it into their mission to discover more of pictures history tried to bury. As they found more and more, they realized some of these photographs dated back more than 100 years.

Fans and critics, both LGBTQ and not are now applauding director David Millbern for compiling this remarkable footage.  “100 Years of Men in Love” is a landmark documentary-style film that sticks close to its title and central premise. Over the course of 57 minutes, we’re treated to various photographs of men expressing love for one another that date back as far as 1850 and as recent as 1955.

Due to how gay couples have been treated over the course of human history, you can already tell how bold it would be for a couple to take a photograph with each other in an embrace during that time frame. The film, itself, works as a huge eye-opener to any naysayers and the current trend of anti-gay rhetoric that believe homosexuality is a more recent trend in human development. As clearly shown by these pictures, the film shows proof that same-sex dating back to the 1850s that gay men were living together in America and unafraid of showing their love in public.

Punctuated between certain photos are quotes from authors such as Walt Whitman and Henry David Thoreau that illustrate how love is universal. Regardless of gender identity or race, we as humans can fall in love with one another. We shouldn’t be imposing limits on our love when love is one of the strongest emotions we can give.

Those who experience “100 Years of Men in Love” are treated to a selection of moments that history couldn’t destroy. The love on display was so powerful, it outlived its subjects and went on to become a beacon of hope for others. "If that’s not the definition of true love, I’m not sure what else could be,” says Director and Producer, David Millbern.

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