7.9/10
31,671
68 user 44 critic

The Normal Heart (2014)

TV-MA | | Drama, History, Romance | TV Movie 25 May 2014
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1:30 | Trailer
A gay activist attempts to raise H.I.V. and A.I.D.S. awareness during the early 1980s.

Director:

Ryan Murphy

Writers:

Larry Kramer (screenplay), Larry Kramer (play)
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Popularity
1,944 ( 285)
Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 27 wins & 56 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mark Ruffalo ... Ned Weeks
Jonathan Groff ... Craig
Frank De Julio ... Nick
William DeMeritt ... Nino
Taylor Kitsch ... Bruce Niles
Joe Mantello ... Mickey Marcus
Sean Meehan ... Morton
Stephen Spinella ... Sanford
Jill Melanie Wirth Jill Melanie Wirth ... Receptionist
BD Wong ... Buzzy
Julia Roberts ... Dr. Emma Brookner
Jim Parsons ... Tommy Boatwright
Adam B. Shapiro ... Bella (as Adam Shapiro)
John Mainieri ... John
Matt Bomer ... Felix Turner
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Storyline

The story of the onset of the HIV-AIDS crisis in New York City in the early 1980s, taking an unflinching look at the nation's sexual politics as gay activists and their allies in the medical community fight to expose the truth about the burgeoning epidemic to a city and nation in denial. Written by Home Box Office

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

To win a war, you have to start one.

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance

Certificate:

TV-MA | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 May 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Normal Heart See more »

Filming Locations:

New York, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Black and White (archive material)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

For the 2011 Broadway premiere of the play "The Normal Heart", Playwright Larry Kramer wrote a flyer called "Please Know" (which he often handed out to exiting audience members himself). "Please Know" explained that most of the events and characters in the play were based on real events, and people. Some of the real people he said his characters were based on included: Paul Popham, one of the founders of the Gay Men's Health Crisis (the basis for Bruce); Dr. Linda Laubenstein, an early AIDS researcher (the basis for Emma); and Rodger McFarlane, a gay rights activist and the creator of the crisis hotline that was the precursor to the GMHC (the basis for Tommy). Like McFarlane, Tommy is a Southerner (McFarlane was born and raised in South Alabama). Like Laubenstein, Emma uses a wheelchair (Laubenstein was left paraplegic after a childhood bout with polio). Although this was not mentioned in Kramer's handout, the character of Felix also had a real-life inspiration: John Duka, who, during the early 1980s, wrote a column in the New York Times's Thursday Style section titled "Notes on Fashion". Duka had been openly gay while working at New York Magazine, but upon his move to the Times in 1980, he felt he needed to re-closet himself because of the Times' then-more-conservative attitudes. Also like Felix, he also had a brief marriage to a woman. The character of Ned is based on Kramer himself. See more »

Goofs

The clock tower seen across the Hudson River (in Hoboken, NJ) was not standing in the early 80s when the film's story took place. It was demolished in the 50s and rebuilt in 2007. See more »

Quotes

Ben Weeks: We have a difference of opinion over theory.
Ned Weeks: But your theory turns me into a man from Mars. My theory doesn't do that to you.
Ben Weeks: Are you suggesting I did something wrong in sending you into therapy so young? I didn't know you were gonna stay there forever!
Ned Weeks: I didn't think that I had done anything wrong until you sent me there!
See more »


Soundtracks

Do You Really Want to Hurt Me
Written by Mikey Craig (as Michael Emile Craig), Roy Hay (as Roy Ernest Hay), Jon Moss (as Jonathan Aubrey Moss), Boy George (as George Alan O'Dowd)
Performed by Culture Club
Courtesy of Virgin Records Ltd.
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

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User Reviews

 
"We are all walking time-bombs..."
25 May 2014 | by moonspinner55See all my reviews

Heart-rending, gut-wrenching adaptation by Larry Kramer of his own successful play about the foundation and formation in 1982 of the Gay Men's Health Crisis in New York City in the wake of what was then-called the Gay Cancer (now HIV/AIDS). Dramatization of events, with Mark Ruffalo's screenwriter Ned Weeks substituting for Kramer, is necessarily a no-holds-barred examination of gay sex in the '80s and its consequences, with the gay community themselves their own worst enemy (by being asked to abstain in the wake of more information on the disease, they felt oppressed as a modern culture and rebelled). In spite of an agonizingly long gestation period for this material (which Barbra Streisand optioned years ago, but was unable to finance), director Ryan Murphy has crafted an immediate and powerful document, alternately angry, sexy, tough, moving and thoughtful. Though "Longtime Companion" and the cable-film "And The Band Played On" have covered the AIDS epidemic (and done it extremely well), that does not lessen the impact of this HBO film, which packs an emotional wallop. Performances from Ruffalo, Julia Roberts, Alfred Molina, Matt Bomer, Jim Parsons and the entire cast are superlative.


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