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The Normal Heart (2014)
Potential to tell an activist tale comes to a halt for a love story
Supposedly the plot of this TV movie is a gay activist attempts to raise HIV/AIDS awareness during the early 1980s. Which, for those that know the history and the contributions of Larry Kramer (author), would leave an audience to believe this is the story of the origin to the successful organization ACT-UP. A group of activists that later would bring the attention of AIDS right into the 1992 presidential election and do more to bring effective medications to fight the virus that had ever tried before. That is how this was advertised but what audiences got was a sappy sluggish romance drama. The shining light within this drama is the stellar performances by both Julia Roberts and Jim Parsons. Noteworthy as well was the division within the gay community of how to present themselves to the public. The dead and the survivors matter. Larry Kramers contributions matter and to shadow him with a pseudonym, smears the work that these early groups did to make AIDS into the normal conversation.