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Films: How to Survive a Plague and Larry Kramer in Love & Anger

April 12, 2017 | Revolution Newspaper |


I want to strongly recommend to all readers of, and especially all people building for the 10 Days of Resistance in late April and early May, the films How to Survive a Plague and Larry Kramer in Love & Anger. Both films can be seen on YouTube, and the Larry Kramer film can be seen on HBO on Demand as well.

Both films give you a feel for what ACT UP— the Aids Coalition to Unleash Power— was like in the 1980s and 1990s. (ACT UP continues to exist and remains a militant organization.). Both films give a feel for the kind of urgency and relentlessness, audacity, determination, and irreverence that Larry Kramer and ACT UP brought into the AIDS crisis. How to Survive a Plague also shows how, on the basis of this uncompromising foundation and urgent edge, ACT UP combined this with reaching very broadly to many different people and undertaking many different activities.

Also available on HBO is a film of Larry Kramer’s great play, The Normal Heart, which shows how Kramer had to go outside the bounds of what was deemed respectable and acceptable. How he had to fight against people's deadly illusions and force people out of their comfort zone to confront the actual dangers they were facing.

There are things here to learn and apply to the struggles of today—not THE ANSWER in toto, but certainly a big part of the answer.

I won’t say more here: watch the films.

A Reader



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