Are You Proud? is a documentary looking at the history of Pride movements here in the UK. Maybe like me you are up on your American queer history a lot more than you are your British queer history.
It came at it from an angle I didn’t expect, namely ‘isn’t it great British has such a wide diversity of Prides taking place!’. This is not normally the tack taken on the subject. Usually the refrain is the movement has become too fractured, we’ve become too divided internally within the queer community. This documentary flips that on its head and says, isn’t it great to live in a country where pride can mean so many different things to so many different people and it all coexists. It doesn’t take a side in any debate but lauds the idea of queer activism spreading out in many different directions. That our differences, rather than divide us, in fact gives us a soldier in every corner, fighting on every front for queer rights.
As someone who has felt very disillusioned and increasingly alienated from recent Pride celebrations, it was heartening to see a documentary reminding us that it is up to each generation to make and remake its own Pride.
True, it was mostly a history of G with a side of L, no B and very little T, but in some ways that does reflect the hierarchy and thus history of Pride movements. A and other pluses will have to wait another 20 years before they start getting included in these movies.
Despite those limitations, it does do a masterful job of fitting 70 years of history into 2 hours.