November 7, 1991 was a day that rocked the sports and entertainment world like none other when one of the best and most beloved basketball players of all time announced that he was HIV-positive and was retiring from the game. For the first time ever, Magic narrates exactly what happened when his whole life and the way the world saw a fatal disease changed forever.
As cheesy as Magic’s “entertainment persona” can be, there is no better way to emotionally ride this roller coaster than from his point of view. The man, who was as much of an entertainer as an elite athlete, had it all taken away as he was handed what was believed to be a death sentence. In this documentary, you hear from players that wouldn’t share a court with him, to his scared family and friends, to his former coach Pat Riley who stepped in to save him from his depressed isolation, to his wife who refused to leave him.
For the first time, we see up close just how “Magic” he really is from old archived footage of NBA highlights to what he has done as a spokesperson and businessman in the last twenty years. I was literally moved to tears as Magic said, “When God gave me this disease, he gave it to the right person.”
For those of us who were too young to understand the weight of what happened that autumn in 1991, The Announcement not only informs but makes you care— about a person, about a disease, and about the way we treat others.