Some movies give you a pleasant landscape, some a confusing story, and some give you the truth. The truth is often ugly, and the movie demands you to face it. Even though The Normal Heart is a very absorbing movie, the truth it presents is so disturbing that sometimes you might need to pause it to digest what you have just seen and to think about it. Considering the fact that there are people who do not respect others’ sexual orientation even in today’s world; imagining the way the gay were treated in the 80’s is distressing enough. Additionally, they become fatally ill, and the government does not do anything about it simply because the ones who die are gay. The lives of hundreds are ignored because public chooses to alienate them because of their sexual tendency.
For two hours, the audience witnesses death of many people only because people do not react. They are diagnosed. They try to stay alive till the cure comes, but it does not. They die. While gay men are trying to make people hear their voices, recognize their and also the disease’s existence; one by one, they die. Why? Because people do not care about a bunch of gay men.
The Normal Heart understands perfectly that it is quite not possible to tell everything happened in a couple of years in two hours. The movie makes a great combination of what is happening to people and what they are doing to prevent that from happening. It gives enough screen time to characters so that we would get to know them and care about them. Meanwhile, we also get to see the bigger picture; a group of people who do not stop fighting, and a bigger group of people who ignore their existence.
With Ryan Murphy as the director, the cast gives unforgettable performances while they experience both emotional and physical transformations. The adaptation of Larry Kramer’s play makes more people get a chance to see it as it is now a TV movie, and easily becomes one of the most thought-provoking movies of the year.
Movies like The Normal Heart need to exist. We need them to exist. Because pretty often we forget others’ pain. We can easily turn our head away and forget someone else’s struggle. We forget how we get to live the way we live today. And once in a while, people like the cast of The Normal Heart come together, and make us see the hidden, hear the unspoken, and remember the forgotten.