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Sunday, January 26, 2014

Dallas Buyers Club Movie Review

The transformation of Matthew McConaughey from shirtless Adonis in bad movies to a major actor ready to compete for an academy award is complete. Over the last two years he has begun turning the tide. As Ron Woodroof in "Dallas Buyers Club", the metamorphosis has been completed.  

In 1986, Ron Woodruff, an electrician in Texas, learned he was HIV-positive. He was initially treated with AZT, the first medication prescribed for HIV-positive patients. Unhappy with the efficacy of his treatment, he set out on a personal journey to investigate better ways of dealing with his predicament. "Dallas Buyers Club" tells his story and it is both inspiring and depressing.

When we first see Ron, he is at a rodeo, behind a fence, out of the public's view. He is engaged in sexual acts with a few people, although it is difficult to see exactly what is going on, but we get the idea.

Ron is a crude con artist who is without any noticeably redeemable qualities. After robbing some buddies after losing a bet to them, he ends up passing out on his living room floor. When he wakes up in a medical facility, he learns that he is HIV-positive, and he immediately explains that he is neither a homosexual nor a drug abuser. The doctors react with the appropriate skepticism, just like the audience.  

What follows is the growth and even blooming of a man who finally has a purpose in life. Director Jean-Marc Vallée handles all of it perfectly, letting it propel without getting too heavy-handed. He allows McConaughey to take over and Matt does not disappoint. He gives a virtuoso performance, worthy of all the accolades he will no doubt receive.

"Dallas Buyers Club" is one of the very best of 2013 and could bring home the statue for Best Motion Picture. I would have no problem with this result, especially since the competition is not particularly stiff. This is a club worth buying into.

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