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Subject: Disasters & Diseases

From Pompeii and Hurricane Katrina to the Black Death and the AIDS epidemic, these are catastrophes that affect humanity on a grand scale. Often these are generated by natural events, though the true disaster can be the human response—or lack thereof.

A Night to Remember

  • Director: Roy Ward Baker
  • Release Date: 1958
  • Production Country: United Kingdom

Gaining a berth on the Royal Mail Ship's Titanic as a 2nd Officer is an honor for Charles Lightholler, but the honor is soon tarnished when the ship is badly damaged by an iceberg mid-voyage. While the crew has access to the latest technology and radio quickly for help, that help is slow in coming, and in the meantime, it becomes obvious that not only do they not have enough lifeboats on hand for the passengers, the lifeboats are being loaded more with regard for social status than any other consideration.

An Early Frost

  • Director: John Erman
  • Release Date: 1985
  • Production Country: United States

A young lawyer tests positive for AIDS, forcing revelations both to and by his family and colleagues, as both he and those around him struggle to come to grips with the fact that there is no cure for what is slowly killing him.

And the Band Played On

  • Director: Roger Spottiswoode
  • Release Date: 1993
  • Production Country: United States

The unexplained deaths of gay men in the United States's large gay communities catch the attention of a virologist, who finds his investigations into the epidemic hampered by uncaring politicians, jealous researchers, and, at times, by the gay community itself.

Beat the Drum

  • Director: David Hickson
  • Release Date: 2003
  • Production Country: South Africa, United States

Orphaned by the AIDS epidemic that has stricken his village, young Musa takes his father's drum and heads for Johannesburg in search of his uncle. While Musa finds life in the city strange and bewildering, when he returns to his village, Musa brings a new understanding to share with his people.

Black Death

  • Director: Christopher Smith
  • Release Date: 2010
  • Production Country: Germany, United Kingdom

Uncertain of his vows, a young monk volunteers to guide a knight and his men in their search for a village said to house the necromancer who is responsible for the plague decimating the countryside, setting the stage for a showdown between gods old and new, in a battle where the winners are not always easy to tell from the losers.

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