An Early Frost ( 1985 )
Director: John Erman.
Teleplay by Daniel Lipman and Ron Cowen, based on a story by Sherman Yellen.
100 minutes. DVD distributor: Wolfe Video
The AIDS epidemic was raging in 1985. People were dying at rates that were unimaginable. When they looked back years later, survivors spoke of losing friends, sometime every single one of them, in the space of a few years. In the "gay ghettos" of major cities, it was not unusual to see scores of emaciated young people preparing for death. President Ronald Reagan wouldn't even say the word—AIDS. Televangelists screamed of "God's wrath." ACT UP—the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power—took to the streets and demanded proper care for the sick, among other things.
In the midst of all this tragedy, NBC green-lighted An Early Frost, the first major film that attempted to deal with the realities of living with, and dying of AIDS complications.
Aidan Quinn played Michael Pierson, a successful lawyer who's come home to die. Both Michael and his parents ( Gena Rowlands and Ben Gazzara ) had to deal with a double coming out. "So you're a homosexual," says Dad. "And you have this disease."
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