Brutally abused by his parents, teenage Thomas finds comfort in associating with a film director who is making a documentary about physical child abuse. The two fall in love, and the elder ... See full summary »
Arthur J. Bressan Jr.
As Michael and Robert, a gay couple in New York, prepare for Robert's departure for a two-year work assignment in Africa, Michael must face Robert's true motives for leaving while dealing ... See full summary »
Moro returns to Alma Ata to collect money owed to him. While waiting out an unexpected delay, he visits his former girlfriend Dina, and discovers she has become a morphine addict. He ... See full summary »
Fred is a psychotic entrepreneur who hopes to convince his wife Janet to invest in a shady land deal. The wife refuses, and the couple continue their heated argument while driving through ... See full summary »
Two elderly World War II buddies are living - and dying - together in their small home. One becomes a patient where salvage-worthy, older attributes are combined with useable, younger body parts. He returns, unrecognized by the other.
James Carroll Plaster,
Welton Benjamin Johnson,
1985 was a very hard year for gays, but some people wanted to help
Buddies (1985) was written and directed by Arthur J. Bressan Jr.
The movie stars Geoff Edholm as Robert Willow, a young gay man dying from HIV/AIDS. David Schachter portrays David Bennett, a young man who volunteers to be a "buddy" to Robert.
The buddy concept was new to me. Humanitarian groups would assign people to visit people dying from HIV/AIDS if they had no other support system. This must have been common, because many gay men had partners who were dying or had died, and people were afraid to go near people with HIV/AIDS because no one knew how it was transmitted.
This film could have been just a sentimental movie about people dying from a dread disease. It was much more than that. It showed us the human face of people dying from HIV/AIDS, and a human face to those brave enough to help them maintain their dignity.
This movie must have been made on a tiny budget, because the two main characters are about the only actors we see. Many people who would normally have appeared on screen were just speaking parts. The sets were essentially just a hospital room and a gymnasium. (David isn't naturally athletic, but he works out so he won't be a "wimp.") Still, it was effective as a two-person film, so the low budget didn't really interfere.
It's hard to say that you "enjoy" a movie like this, but I can say that I learned from it and am glad that I saw it. It was shown at Rochester's great Dryden Theatre at The George Eastman Museum. The movie was presented as "ImageOut of the Archives" by ImageOut, the excellent Rochester LGBT Film Festival. It will work on the small screen.
Buddies has a very strong IMDb rating of 8.2. Yes--it's that good. Find it and watch it.
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