Monday, May 27, 2024
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Two stunning releases about AIDS, gay history come to home video

Kino Lorber has announced its latest releases, including The AIDS Show (1986) and Common Threads: Stories From the Quilt (1989) and more!

One of the most important documents of the AIDS epidemic, The AIDS Show was filmed in 1986 in the very early years of the crisis. The AIDS (Artists Involved with Death and Survival) Show deals with the impact of the epidemic on the community most affected by the disease — gay men.

This unique work, one of the first films to deal with the subject of AIDS, was based on San Francisco’s long-running Theatre Rhinoceros stage production of the same name. It speaks to everyone who has ever thought about AIDS or any terminal disease. Excerpts from the play have been combined with interviews with the show’s creators and performers, along with a personal narration by the filmmakers — Peter Adair & Rob Epstein — to produce a powerful hybrid of documentary and drama. Preserved by Metropolis Post from the best materials, courtesy of Rob Epstein and Telling Pictures.

Bonus Features:

The Shanti Project: Performance of The A.I.D.S. Show (1985, 22 minutes) | Leland Moss Audition and Interview (21 minutes) | Trailer

For more than 30 years, Oscar®-winning directors Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman have borne powerful witness to gay life, creativity, and activism — documenting lost aspects of LGBTQ+ history and chronicling unfolding events with humor, compassion, and fierce urgency. The Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman Collection includes three of their most essential works in new restorations: Common Threads: Stories From the Quilt (1989, winner of the Academy Award® for Best Documentary Feature), Where Are We? Our Trip Through America (1992) and Paragraph 175 (2000). Common Threads uses the NAMES Project Memorial Quilt to explore the cross-section of identities affected by HIV/AIDS, as well as efforts to combat the stigma, misinformation, and political obstruction that deepened the crisis. Where Are We? Our Trip Through America follows Epstein and Friedman as they chronicle an 18-day road trip through the American south. They interview a large variety of people along the way, stopping to ask them questions about their hopes and regrets. Paragraph 175 fills a crucial gap in the historical record by revealing the lasting consequences of the Nazi persecution of homosexuals.

Bonus Features:

Common Threads: Audio commentary by filmmakers Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman | Vito Russo’s ACT UP Demonstration (1988)

Then and Now (1981-2004, directed by Epstein and Friedman, 43 minutes)

Vito Russo – pre-interview footage | Where Are We? Deleted

About Kino Lorber

With a library of over 4,000 titles, Kino Lorber Inc. has been a leader in independent art house distribution for 35 years, releasing 30 films per year theatrically under its Kino Lorber, Kino Repertory and Alive Mind Cinema banners, garnering seven Academy Award® nominations in nine years. In addition, the company brings over 350 titles yearly to the home entertainment and educational markets through physical and digital media releases. In 2019, the company launched its new art house digital channel Kino Now which features over 1300 titles from the acclaimed Kino Lorber library. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Kino Marquee initiative was launched pioneering “virtual cinema” releases of art house films with revenue shares that allow audiences to support almost 500 local independent theaters. Kino Lorber was honored with a Special Award from the New York Film Critics Circle for this effort. In 2021, the company launched Kino Cult, an AVOD channel specializing in new and rare, acclaimed genre films.

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