Do Not Go Gentle – Buddies [In-Person Only]

This event took place Nov 29 - Dec 3, 2023

$14 General Admission
$10 Student/Child/Senior
$7 NWFF Member

Arthur J. Bressan, Jr.
1h 21m


(Arthur J. Bressan, Jr., US, 1985, 81 min, in English)

In Buddies, the first-ever feature-length drama about AIDS, 25-year-old gay yuppie David is assigned to be a “buddy” to AIDS patient Robert, a politically impassioned, 32-year-old gay California gardener abandoned by his friends and lovers. Arthur J. Bressan, Jr. (Gay USA) skillfully unfolds this devastating two-hander (the rest of the cast is only heard offscreen) within the confines of Robert’s Manhattan hospital room. As David gazes out at the piers and rooftops of Manhattan, we hear his deftly scripted diary entries in voiceover. And as David is changed by knowing Robert, so, too, are we. In the simplicity of the story and the elegance of its unfolding, Buddies achieves a rare perfection, becoming a timeless portrayal of an entire era in gay history.

Synopsis and stills courtesy of Frameline Distribution.

Click for Accessibility Info

Ticketing, concessions, cinemas, restrooms, and our public edit lab are located on Northwest Film Forum’s ground floor, which is wheelchair accessible. All doors in Northwest Film Forum are non-motorized, and may require staff assistance to open. Our upstairs workshop room is not wheelchair accessible.

The majority of seats in our main cinema are 21″ wide from armrest to armrest; some seats are 19″ wide. We are working on creating the option of removable armrests!

We have a limited number of assistive listening devices available for programs hosted in our larger theater, Cinema 1. These devices are maintained by the Technical Director, and can be requested at the ticketing and concessions counter. Also available at the front desk is a Sensory Kit you can borrow, which includes a Communication Card, noise-reducing headphones, and fidget toys.

The Forum does NOT have assistive devices for the visually impaired, and is not (yet) a scent-free venue. Our commitment to increasing access for our audiences is ongoing, and we welcome all public input on the subject!

If you have additional specific questions about accessibility at our venue, please contact our Patron Services Manager at Our phone number (206-329-2629) is voicemail-only, but we check it often.

Made possible due to a grant from Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, in partnership with Sensory Access, our Sensory Access document presents a visual and descriptive walk-through of the NWFF space. View it in advance of attending an in-person event at, in order to prepare yourself for the experience.

⚠️ Covid-19 Policies ⚠️

NWFF patrons will be required to wear masks that cover both nose and mouth while in the building. Disposable masks are available at the door for those who need them. We are not currently checking vaccination cards. Recent variants of COVID-19 readily infect and spread between individuals regardless of vaccination status.

Read more about NWFF’s policies regarding cleaning, masks, and capacity limitations here.

More Buddies background:

Frameline, the San Francisco International LGBTQ+ Film Festival, presented Vinegar Syndrome’s new 2K digital restoration created by Vinegar Syndrome. Fitting, as they also hosted Bressan and the Buddies cast at the film’s world premiere on September 12th, 1985, at the Castro Theatre, with tickets benefiting the Shanti Project. Five days later, on September 17th, 1985, President Reagan said the word “AIDS” in public for the first time. Bressan and actor Geoff Edholm both died of AIDS, in 1987 and 1989 respectively.

Buddies was scripted in San Francisco in five days with input from friends with AIDS. It was shot independently in nine days in New York, Washington, D.C., and San Francisco with a budget of about $27,000. In Bressan’s words: “For me there is a real moral issue in going around and raising several hundred thousand dollars to make a movie about the pain and suffering and lives of people with AIDS who can’t make rent and are living on food stamps. I really felt I’d better make Buddies small, low budget, and powerful… I did not want to spend a year or two doing an AIDS movie which should be made now.

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Northwest Film Forum
1515 12th Ave,

Seattle, WA 98122

206 329 2629

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