I remember catching a snippet of the 2012 HBO news story on the interracial marriage of Richard and Mildred Loving in Virginia. I remember being shocked by the story that in the late 50's and 60's, it was illegal to have a mixed race marriage here in the US. I was well aware of racial issues, unrest, rights violations and so much more. But clearly I had my head in the sand to think that interracial marriage was outlawed also.(I since learned in VA and 19 other states at that time).
So in the film "Loving", Richard and Mildred (fantastically wellacted by the restrained Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga) get married in 1958 and are soon arrested and sent to live in Washington, D.C. for where they both lived with parents and in the houses they were born and raised.
However, when they cross the legal lines of getting interracially married (in Washington DC where it was legal) and having a child, all the legal hiccups surface in draconian Virginia.
These kind, caring and amazingly "Loving" folk raised their 3 kids in a much more urban DC and yearned endlessly for the open space and green grass of their hometown in VA.
A letter to then Attorney General Robert Kennedy and subsequent referral to the ACLU got them the powerful and free legal help they needed to fight this fight.
Their calmness, singular vision to be a loving family raising their kids in their hometown allowed the focus of their journey and the film to be quite singular. Without sensational speeches or acts of violence, Richard and Mildred quietly and steadily move forward to their goal while making the true story carry the day.
This is a heck of an important film…really sticks with you. Again, sort of like the recent "Hacksaw Ridge", the bringing of these true, off the grid stories that aren't that far old in our history to the big screen smacks the crap out of the viewer. Both these stories will stick with me for many, many years.