SPOTLIGHT FILMS: Dallas Buyer's Club

By Contributor
February 14th, 2014

On Tuesday Feb. 25, Spotlight Films will be presenting “Dallas Buyers Club”, directed by Montreal born Jean-Marc Valee (C.R.A.Z.Y.) from an original screenplay by Craig Borten and Melisa Wallack.

It’s the mid 80’s and A.I.D.S. (H.I.V.) is making its North American debut as a disease which carries a sentence of certain death. 

In this based on actual events story, self-interested, homophobic, heavy smoking, heavy drinking, coke snorting, racist and somewhat morally deficient electrician and sometime rodeo cowboy, Ron Woodroof (Matthew McConaughey, “Mud”) is diagnosed with H.I.V. and told he is likely to die within 30 days.

He doesn’t accept the accompanying death sentence and thrusts himself into a crash course of research which reveals a lack of approved treatments and medications in the U.S. He crosses into Mexico where he meets a “Dr.” Vass (Griffin Dunne, “The Good Wife”, tv, “Law and Order C.I.” tv), an American physician whose license was revoked in the US because of his AIDS related work against US regulations and who introduces Ron to alternative treatments. Ron begins smuggling them into the U.S., challenging the medical community and his concerned physician, Dr. Eve Saks (Screen Actors Guild Winner, Jennifer Garner, “Juno”). 

An outsider to the gay community, Ron finds an unlikely ally in fellow AIDS patient Rayon (Gotham Independent Film Award winner Jared Leto, “Fight Club”,  “The Thin Red Line’, “Lord of War” ), a transsexual who shares Ron’s lust for life. Rayon also shares Ron’s entrepreneurial spirit: seeking to avoid government sanctions against selling non-approved medicines and supplements, they establish a buyers club, where H.I.V.-positive people pay monthly dues for access to the newly acquired supplies.

Deep in the heart of Texas, Ron’s pioneering underground collective beats loud and strong. With a growing community of friends and clients, Ron fights for dignity, education, and acceptance. In the years following his diagnosis (apparently beyond his mandated expiration date), the embattled Lone Star loner lives life to the fullest like never before.

Jared Leto, btw, and as some might already be aware, is also rhythm guitar, vocals, and songwriter for the cult American Platinum band “30 Seconds to Mars”.

A testimony to McConaughey’s dedication to Cinema art is the fact he lost 49 pounds for this role. 

This is a very well done film with excellent acting, well deserving of Oscar consideration, and due to graphic depictions of some pretty racy sex, isn’t well suited for  the mildly prudish. 

D.B.C. has won 41 awards, including Best Actor for McConaughey and Best Supporting Actor for Leto at the Golden Globes and is up for 6 Oscars including Best Picture, Best Actor and Supporting Actor for McConnaughey and Leto and Best Editing for Valee. It is also nominated for 27 other awards. It received 8/10 on IMdb (Internet Movie data base) and 93% based on 201 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes. “Dallas Buyers Club” will be shown at the Gem Theatre at 7:30 pm.

Thanks to Huggo. IMdb, and Rotten Tomatoes. Thanks also to Maureen and Marius Paquet of the Gem Theatre, and to our sponsors and patrons.