Common Threads: Stories from the Quilt

Film
Since 1985, the Names Project has based its work around the assembling of a now massive memorial quilt composed of individually-produced squares, each commemorating an AIDS death. In this Oscar-winning documentary, maintaining the high standards of Epstein's earlier The Times of Harvey Milk, he and his co-director Friedman have chosen, from the widest possible spectrum, six people who have suffered loss: the wives of an Olympic athlete and a drug addict, the parents of a haemophiliac boy who died at twelve, and a naval commander and a writer, who have both lost lovers and themselves contracted AIDS. Through their moving testimonies, with the aid of photographs and home videos, faces and histories are put to the names on five of the squares. It's a gentle, sensitive film, the fierce anger felt by its makers evident only in the use of statistics and media snippets which build up to a damning indictment of the social and political response to the AIDS crisis.

By: WH

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Cast and crew