Monday, September 3, 2012

How to Survive a Plague (2012)

The story of two coalitions -- ACT UP and TAG (Treatment Action Group) -- whose activism and innovation turned AIDS from a death sentence into a manageable condition.
The Buzz: In recent years, with the queer-rights movement trained on the issue of marriage equality, and as sectors of the HIV+ population have achieved and maintained undetectable status, the AIDS/ARC timeline has blurred for some of us. What first shook me back into consciousness in David France`s documentary was the footage from the first ACT UP event, which went down on Wall Street in March, 1987. Those wavy videotaped moments reminded me that the response to the AIDS epidemic was started by a few and embraced by many. This was a time when Mark Harrington and Peter Staley became community leaders and people who had never been politically involved, such as chemist Iris Long, emerged to help put together a plan of action for treatment. Whether you are a survivor of that time period or a member of the generation that followed, How to Survive a Plague is a radical and inspiring document of a social movement that has not lost its power, influence and hope over the last 35 years.

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