Devastating documentary chronicles the AIDS epidemic in the gay community from its beginnings in San Francisco. Plays out almost like a war doc, using personal stories to create a look at the front lines of the battle against AIDS with great reverence and dignity.
I expected this to be distressing and depressing, and yes, there is a fair measure of that. But overwhelmingly it is a film of hope, humanity, self sacrifice and love. The candid memories of the survivors are exceptional...
I think the most profound thing that affected me while watching this documentary was the fact that I barely moved, noticing that it was hard to breathe at times. This incredibly sad yet powerfully uplifting story of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the 1980s is must-watch material for everybody, gay or straight, to truly understand the breadth of this illness and how it affected a select group of people. Incredible work.
Beautifully put together documentary on the impact that AIDS had in San Francisco gay community in the late 70s. Together with the TV Movie And The Band Played On, you get a pretty good picture of what really went on, how people cope with fear of the unknown, and how the human being has a marvellous capacity of surviving to grief and helping the other to do so.
A loving and heartbreaking documentary about how the AIDS epidemic impacted the gay community in San Francisco. The film's narrow focus on the lives of half a dozen or so interviewees yields a universal message of hope and compassion in the face of devastating tragedy.
War takes many forms. Weissman and Weber delve into a generation consumed and lost on the battlefields of a health epidemic. I was too young to understand the happenings of that time, though I remember the nightly news stories. Decades later, I respond to these personal stories w/ a touch of incredulity that it happened in my lifetime. Touching and informative. (And I remember Guy the flower man from my SF years)!
Saw this at the Berlinale - it was really a moving piece, partially as a result of my personal life (born and raised in San Francisco, spent formative years volunteering at HIV-related community orgs), but also because of the impressive stories and images weaved together by Weissman. This film makes me sad through its study of life and death, but proud of my city and the community that survived these painful years.