How to Survive a Plague


2012 | 110 minutes | Rated NR


The American activist group ACT UP’s accomplishments can hardly be overstated. Through a series of direct actions ranging from the pointedly whimsical (covering Jesse Helms’s house with a giant condom) to the brutally confrontational (selling black-market AIDS meds outside the FDA), ACT UP forced the fast-tracking of HIV drugs, rewrote the FDA’s treatment agenda on AIDS, and made the AIDS crisis impossible to ignore at a time when the US government and medical establishment had failed to address the crisis in any meaningful way. How to Survive a Plague captures the group in all its brilliant, messy, heroic glory, thanks to a wealth of footage of ACT UP in action. It will make you cry at least three different times. Don’t miss it. (DAVID SCHMADER)

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Film Credits
David France