Sunday, January 08, 2017

‘Last Men’ Film on AIDS Survivors Now Available for Viewing Online

Written by Chronicle Staff

The San Francisco Chronicle hosts the premiere of
“Last Men Standing” at the Castro Theatre in April 2016

“Last Men Standing,” The San Francisco Chronicle’s documentary on long-term survivors of AIDS, is now available online to subscribers.

The film — the first feature-length documentary made by The Chronicle — follows the lives of eight Bay Area men who were diagnosed with HIV in the early years of the AIDS epidemic and never expected to survive much past their 30s, and certainly not into their 50s and beyond. It was part of a yearlong reporting project by The Chronicle that included articles on the men and multimedia features.

“Last Men Standing” premiered to a sellout crowd at the Castro Theatre in April, 2016. It has since been screened at film festivals around the world, including at the Frameline LGBT festival in San Francisco, and was featured at the International AIDS Conference in South Africa in July.

Former Chronicle filmmakers Erin Brethauer and Tim Hussin made the 65-minute documentary over 10 months, first spending hours interviewing the subjects and then following them in their daily lives over many weeks.

The film has been heralded by the community of AIDS survivors for being among the first to acknowledge, and celebrate, their resilience, and to shine a light on their needs.

Long-term AIDS survivors often suffer a host of complications from having lived for decades with HIV. Many are struggling with mental health issues, including depression, post-traumatic stress, long-term grief and isolation. They’re at risk of medical conditions such as cancer, heart disease, liver and kidney problems, and recurring infections. And many survivors are financially strapped from being unprepared to live so long.

Chronicle subscribers can view the film online here.