And the Band Played On Review

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In this adaptation of Schilts' factual account, scientists in America begin to discover AIDS, but after finding it most common in gay men, jump to the conclusion that they are its only victims.


A long and sappy TV movie adaptation of recently deceased Randy Shifts' bestseller about the early days of AIDS. There's a fascinating story in the squabble between a research team led by Matthew Modine and glory-hound medical guru Alan Alda, but the soap operaish account of the effects of AIDS on the American gay community mainly serves to afford feelgood cameos (Richard Gere, Steve Martin amongst other A-Listers eager to get respect from the ‘pink’ viewers) and go for the sobs instead of dealing with a sensitive topic in an informative and compelling manner.

The historic account could have proved an interesting topic for a film but sadly here it is buried under a thick layer of schmaltz and although the performances are good, it does feel like a soap-opera in parts.