How to Survive a Plague plus panel discussion Cert. 15 Picture house at FACT

  • Released2012
  • Running time110 minutes
  • DirectorDavid France
  • GenreDocumentary, LGBT
  • LanguageEnglish

The appalling indifference and hostility towards people living with HIV in the 1980s and the efforts of New York-based campaigners to combat this are the subject of journalist and newbie director David France’s inspiring, instructive film.

Using mainly archive footage shot by ACT UP, the film records the gay community coming together and vociferously lobbying politicians, church leaders and federal agencies to overcome prejudice and, more importantly, provide the drugs which would stop people dying.

Through their spontaneously formed Treatment Action Group, activists with little formal medical knowledge taught themselves what they needed to know, and forced the government and drug companies to speed up approvals of drugs that in some cases were already on sale elsewhere.

Recent interviews with survivors, clinicians and others involved with ACT UP at the time eloquently vindicate their outrage.

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