Travis Mathews: “Cruising” Was A Snapshot Of A Gay Subculture “On The Eve Of HIV’s Arrival”

Cruising 1980 Al Pacino pic 4I keep pointing out that the bar scenes really amount to well-shot documentary footage with real patrons, in real bars, doing real drugs, real sex, real drinking… If you edit these scenes alone it’s an important document of this gay subculture on the eve of HIV’s arrival. What’s chilling is that HIV is probably all around them as they’re filming and no one knew it.”

Travis Mathews, on the bar scenes in William Friedkin’s 1980 gay thriller Cruising—which inspired his latest work, Interior. Leather. Bar—to

 CORRECTION: This post has been updated to clarify Mathews was speaking about the bar scenes in the original Cruising, not in Interior. Leather. Bar.