Larry Kramer on the Origins of U.S. Inequality

At the time, Larry Kramer‘s 2004 speech, “Tragedy of Today’s Gays,” inflamed the LGBTQ community on his harsh rhetoric on sex and drug addition within the LGBTQ community.

Gay Activist & Writer, Larry Kramer at Cooper Union, New York City, November 11, 2004

Looking at his speech years later, what is most prescient is his focus on “the elite cabal” that has organized in the US since the early 70’s. Licking their wounds from Vietnam, the civil rights movement, the women’s movement, this “cabal” gathered and organized with lazar-like focus to shape an America to their beliefs. Those beliefs? Only people that look like them, are as rich as they are, can control the country. His message was not only for the LGBTQ community to stay focused and organize, but for anyone that believes in true democracy, voting rights, equality for all, to stay focused and get involved.

This portion of his speech could have been delivered last week and make perfect sense.

Surprisingly I was the only camera guy in the room. At the time I was working on a film, Rock Bottom: Gay Men and Meth, with Colin Weil and Joe Lovett, and wanted to hear Larry’s take on why so many gay men were self destructing after the acute phase of the AIDS epidemic had passed. This excerpt is from Kramer’s speech he delivered at Cooper Union, New York City, November 11, 2004.

Life and Death on the A-List

tom mcbride

Released: 1996
Length: 45 minutes
Director: Jay Corcoran
Cast: Tom McBride

This striking documentary by filmmaker Jay Corcoran, details the life and death of Tom McBride, a New York actor and model dying of Progressive Multi-focal Leucoencephalopathy (PML), an AIDS-related brain disease.

Trailer: Life and Death on the A-List

Life and Death on the A-List

Watch Life and Death on the A-List on YouTube

McBride’s “All-American” good looks made him a familiar face in television commercials, print ads and films through the ’70s and ’80s. He even became that most emblematic of masculine images: the Winston man. For many gay men, McBride became an icon exemplifying life on the “A-List” — the whirl of sex, drugs, theme parties, and summers on Fire Island that made New York’s gay scene famous. But McBride’s glamorous life was stalked by his sexual obsession and compulsive drive.

Corcoran’s film takes an unsparing look at one man’s relationship to his beautiful body and how he copes with its disintegration. More profoundly, LIFE AND DEATH ON THE A-LIST is about us: our bodies, our fantasies, our dreams of sexual fulfillment. Tom McBride is a fallible, tragic hero pointing the way to a more humane vision of how we all — gay and straight — might view our lives, bodies, and the endless possibilities of life.

Continue reading “Life and Death on the A-List”

Undetectable: The New Face of AIDS

Undetectable, feature documentary by Jay Corcoran

Released: 2001
Length: 56 minutes
Producer: Jay Corcoran
Executive producer: Michael Roberts
Cinematographer: Jay Corcoran
Editor: George O’Donnell
Composer: Scott Killian

Undetectable is a feature documentary, following for three years six Boston residents on the new multi-drug therapies for HIV disease. The film examines the complex physical and psychological effects of the treatment on three women and three men of various ethnic and cultural backgrounds, and the importance of AIDS education and advocacy within both the gay and poor and minority communities. It was broadcast on PBS, Independent Lens.
Continue reading “Undetectable: The New Face of AIDS”