HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, A
This is a Hijack
Loved One, The
Jumanji: The Next Level
Krabi 2562
Call of the Wild, The
Diary of a Country Priest
Sea Fever
Throw Down
Grudge, The
Green Man, The
Specialists, The
Convoy
Romantic Comedy
Going Ape!
Rabid
Infinite Football
Little Women
Camino Skies
Ema
Another Shore
Cry Havoc
Legend of the Stardust Brothers, The
Mystery Team
Westward the Women
Demonwarp
Man Who Killed Don Quixote, The
Chloe
Jojo's Bizarre Adventure
Murder Inferno
Extraction
Overlanders, The
Can You Keep a Secret?
Women in Revolt
Astronaut
Peanut Butter Falcon, The
Ip Man 4: The Finale
Card, The
Bloodshot
Intruder, The
   
 
Newest Articles
The Golden Age of Colonic Irrigation: Monty Python Series 4 on Blu-ray
Lady of Pleasure: Lola Montes on Blu-ray
Take You to the Gay Bar: Funeral Parade of Roses on Blu-ray
Hit for Ms: Mark Cousins' Women Make Film on Blu-ray
Look Sinister: The 1000 Eyes of Dr. Mabuse on Blu-ray
Star Wars Triple Threat: The Tricky Third Prequel and Sequel
I Can See for Miles: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes on Blu-ray
Too Much Pressure: The Family Way on Blu-ray
The Alan Key: Alan Klein and What a Crazy World on Blu-ray
A Japanese Ghost Story: Kwaidan on Blu-ray
The Zu Gang: Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain on Blu-ray
Reality TV: The Year of the Sex Olympics on DVD
The Young and the Damned: They Live By Night on Blu-ray
Mind How You Go: The Best of COI on Blu-ray
Der Kommissar's in Town: Babylon Berlin Series 3 on DVD
The End of Civilisation as We Know It: The 50th Anniversary
The Whalebone Box: The Andrew Kotting Interview
Being Human: The Elephant Man on 4K UHD Blu-ray
It's! Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 3 on Blu-ray
Put the Boot In: Villain on Blu-ray
The Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 2: Vic Pratt Interview
All the Lonely People: Sunday Bloody Sunday on Blu-ray
Desperate Characters: Beat the Devil on Blu-ray
Chansons d'Amour: Alfie Darling on Blu-ray
Ozploitation Icon: Interview with Roger Ward
   
 
  Dallas Buyers Club Medicine Man
Year: 2013
Director: Jean-Marc Vallée
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Jennifer Garner, Jared Leto, Denis O'Hare, Steve Zahn, Michael O'Neill, Dallas Roberts, Griffin Dunne, Kevin Rankin, Donna Duplantier, Deneen Tyler, J.D. Evermore, Ian Casselberry, Noelle Wilcox, Bradford Cox, Rick Espaillat
Genre: Drama, BiopicBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: In 1985 Ron Woodroof (Matthew McConaughey) was an electrician working in Dallas, Texas, and having what he thought was the time of his life, sleeping around, gambling, snorting tons of cocaine, drinking gallons of alcohol, and chainsmoking into the bargain. But he had been losing weight quite alarmingly, and one day after indulging in quite a few of the aforementioned he collapsed at home, waking up hours later but not twigging that he was really very ill. Later, he collapsed even more seriously and was rushed to hospital, where he was informed the doctors had performed blood tests on him and found him to be afflicted with the AIDS virus, something he thought only homosexuals such as the recently outed Rock Hudson contracted...

Only he didn't call them homosexuals. This was, according to the opening credit, based on a true story, and seeing as how it involved leading man McConaughey shedding many pounds to change his physical appearance, he was a shoo-in at a tough Oscars race for the Best Actor gong, as it had been observed the Academy liked performances which featured the thespian going the extra mile for their art. All credit to him, although how accurate his portrayal to the real Ron Woodroof was contended by many who had actually known the man, the character as delivered in the script by Craig Borten and Melisa Wallack was the tour de force McConaughey was by this point well known for.

That award was a validation of a star who had reinvented himself as a powerful dramatic actor for a new phase in his career, which funnily enough was echoed in the Ron persona he was playing, an outwardly shallow man whose shake up in outlook was enough to redeem him. This Ron doesn't believe anyone except the gay community and intravenous drug abusers have anything to worry from AIDS, but when he contracts it he finds himself ostracised and at a loss for what to do next with what the doctors tell him is a month of life left. In a way Borten and Wallack had less taken the real Woodroof as a model, who was bisexual, and more the bigot played by Vic Morrow in the first segment of Twilight Zone: The Movie, who has a taste of his own medicine.

On the subject of medicine, Dallas Buyers Club appealed to a different section of the community than those with experience of gay lifestyles, or sympathetic to them, as the Food and Drugs Administration came in for mighty criticism, previously the domain of conspiracy theorists but in this case offering evidence the organisation was deliberately holding back valuable research and even medication which could easily have made a difference in the treatment of AIDS patients, instead pushing medication that will make pharmaceutical companies big profits rather than saving the victims. Again, not everyone went along with the movie's depiction of the government body who are boo hiss bad guys to a man, but that highlighted the best way to appreciate this, not as sticking to the letter of truth, but as an actor's showcase.

It wasn't only McConaughey providing impressive acting, as his co-stars Jennifer Garner (as a composite of various doctors who could understand what Ron was attempting) and Jared Leto (as the transsexual Rayon, also whip-thin) were instrumental to how effective as drama this was. Leto's character didn't exist in real life, yet as another Oscar winner he amped up the sympathy, with Ron treating him as a necessary figure in running his club where he sells subscriptions to offer illegal drugs to AIDS patients which will do them far more good than the official ones given in hospitals. That doesn't mean Ron has to like him, his prejudice still present while confronted with its essential idiocy, though it's no surprise to see him thaw by the close of the story. If you never thought Jared Leto could move you in an acting performance (the jury's still out on his music), then prepare to be taken aback by his commitment, so perhaps it was best to leave the disgruntlement many had with the movie to one side (the anachronisms were thanks to the lack of budget) until you had finished watching its drama.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1788 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
  Hannah Prosser
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
  Butch Elliot
  Rachel Franke
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: