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We Were Here revisits the crises facing the gay community in the early 1980s -- and offers a powerful tribute to the inspiring resolve shown at a time of turmoil.
All Critics (44)
| Top Critics (16)
| Fresh (44)
| Rotten (0)
A simple, powerful act of bearing witness, We Were Here is a sober reminder of the not-too-distant past, when gays were focused not on honeymoon plans but on keeping people alive.
Even if, understandably, it's a little inward-looking (the ongoing disaster in Africa gets barely a mention), as a slice of social history, We Were Here takes an invigoratingly positive position on a very gloomy time.
[A] sober, devastating film about how we all - and some more than others - have to deal with the most unexpected horrors in our lives.
There's something profoundly inspirational about this portrait of a community coming together to battle prejudice and disease.
"We Were Here" pays eloquent homage to men and women who deserve to be celebrated and remembered as heroes.
The most gripping war movie you'll see this year, We Were Here tells first-hand the story of how AIDS attacked San Francisco, killing more than 15,000. Whole peer groups were happy, healthy, and then dead in months.
A must-see, and not just for its subject matter. This potent documentary is a brave statement by those involved in its making, released in a time when public attitudes to homosexuality and the AIDS virus are still loaded with fear and ignorance.
Though the topic is sad, We Were Here is a tribute to the heroism of those who stepped up to help, and to the resilience of the gay community itself.
We Were Here does not move behind the scope of San Francisco, which I considered a benefit. It allows the viewer to fully immerse themselves in the story.
We Were Here ultimately serves as a tribute -- not only to those who are no longer with us, but also to those who crossed the minefield and emerged as survivors, storytellers and heroes.
...cinematographer Marsha Kahm has done a stellar job of zeroing in on the disparate visages whether revelling in the joy of a long-forgotten moment with a former partner or letting tears of 'Why not me?' come into unabashed focus.
...simple yet very intense, and if you have any interest in gay history, you won't want to miss it.
An important and engaging documentary about the unimaginable horrors of the early years of AIDS. Although I had head some of this before from older friends, it provided a much better, more complete account of a harrowing time. It is easy to forget the pain and fears of others, or just to know them in a detached academic way. We should never forget that an entire community dying was reality for some people.
"We Were Here" is a simple, yet powerfully effective documentary history of the AIDS epidemic in San Francisco that creates a clear timeline of events, running from first rumors through effective treatment. This is told by a handful of survivors and eyewitnesses in their own words, recalling lost friends and loved ones, thus bringing such momentous events down to a deeply personal level. And the archival footage and photographs work well in tandem with this. Of particular interest is the valuable work of the lesbian community during the epidemic, previously a lesser partner in the larger gay community, rising to the occasion in more ways than one.(Correct me if I'm wrong but I think this was only glanced over in "And the Band Played On" by Randy Shilts.)
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