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146 of 149 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unwitting Advocate
As a nurse during the AIDS crisis in the 1980's, it was one of the most frustrating experiences of my career. Dying men, families and friends who rejected them. Homemade signs as anyone entered town saying "BillyBob is a f*****, and he has AIDS. Funeral homes who would not take a person who had died with HIV. I could go on and on, but this film gives us a first hand...
Published 17 months ago by prisrob

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth a watch
Not something I would watch again, but the Mathews acting was absolutely amazing. Interesting, frustrating, scary, and gut wrenching story.
Published 12 months ago by Kat


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146 of 149 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unwitting Advocate, 5 Feb. 2014
By 
prisrob "pris," (New England USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
As a nurse during the AIDS crisis in the 1980's, it was one of the most frustrating experiences of my career. Dying men, families and friends who rejected them. Homemade signs as anyone entered town saying "BillyBob is a f*****, and he has AIDS. Funeral homes who would not take a person who had died with HIV. I could go on and on, but this film gives us a first hand experience.

"Dallas Buyers Club," directed by Jean-Marc Vallée gives us the story of a man, who had unprotected sex, mainlined drugs and developed HIV. You can find this kind of story anywhere, but it is the performances by Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto that bring this film to life. Ron Woodroof, played by McConaughey was a real-life figure. Diagnosed with HIV he could not believe it, a heterosexual man, cowboy, rodeo man, found himself with a 30 day life sentence. Unable to be part of the AZT trials, he began exploring alternative medications, went to Mexico and got better. He became partners with the men he detested the most, and soon became friends with them.

Jared Leto, as the transsexual, Rayon, is the epitome of an actor that transcends space and time. He deserves the Academy Award for his portrayal. We become emotionally involved with these two characters as they try to save their kind, while at the same time making money by charging to belong to the 'Club' and obtaining medications to keep them alive. Fighting the FDA, the physicians, big Pharma and any legal entity , they did their thing. Both actors lost a great deal of weight fir these roles, and it shows. We are waiting for them to keel over.

Try not to come to this film with pre-conceived ideas about this community. Let yourself into the story, and believe and observe their life. It takes a strong commitment to fight this good fight. Excellent film, but the performances will overwhelm you.

Recommended. prisrob 02-04-15
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's all about acting. McConaughey sells the film!, 27 April 2014
By 
Lola (London) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Dallas Buyers Club [DVD] (DVD)
Dallas, the eighties (as in 1980s). Cue whoring, drinking, wild, and sometimes bull-riding Matthew McConaughey, who is diagnosed with Aids and given 30 days to live.

You know what, "Dallas Buyers Club" would not be that magnificent if not for the spectacular McConaughey. Do you even remember him in the early days when he was the most likely romantic hero coupled up with Kate Hudson and Jennifer Lopez? He is now completely reinvented. After all the superb performances recently, and losing half of his body weight to play the changed homophobe, he totally deserved an Oscar. The screen literally lights when he is on camera, he is so alive and yet he is about to die. Fighting the system which would not prescribe or let him on a trial of the new drug, he uses his thirty days to setting up and start running an illegal business (ingeniously set up "membership club") of HIV drugs for all.

Yes, he starts running the enterprise, but it's not about big money and profit. It's about odds and one man's determination to stay alive and keep alive the very people that he despised. And, believe it or not, there is a pinch of humour thrown in.

Ultimately, this is an uplifting story of abiding hope and unlikely bravery. And Jared Leto is fantastic.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quite literally brilliant, 4 May 2014
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Inspiring, jaw dropping performances from both Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto.
Admittedly I'd long heard about this film since Leto signed on and had follow his transformation which by watching the film was incredible!
This true story is well written, emotional and thought provoking, it does a fantastic job at entertaining, pulling on your heart strings, telling a wonderful true story and raising awareness.
I wouldn't hesitate at watching this film again and again
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Too much 'love' will kill you..., 4 Mar. 2014
This review is from: Dallas Buyers Club [DVD] (DVD)
Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto have rightly been hailed as the best things about this semi-biographical story set in 1985, that looks at the rising AIDS crisis, through the respective perspectives of a hard living electrician cum rodeo cowboy Ron Woodroof (McConaughey), and a self-destructive transgender prostitute named Rayon (Leto). However, Jennifer Garner’s earnest doctor, who comes into contact with Woodroof when he is diagnosed HIV positive, also impresses, as do Griffin Dunne as a disgraced MD who provides non-approved anti-AIDS drugs to Woodroof thus establishing the titular ‘club’, and Kevin Rankin as T.J., Ron’s rabidly-homophobic best buddy, who quickly turns on his former friend once Woodroof’s condition becomes known.

McConaughey turns method here, losing a shocking amount of weight and immersing himself in his portrayal of a man who is to all intents and purposes a nasty piece of work. Whoring, boozing, engaging in homophobic banter with his ne’er do well workmates, and generally strutting around like a misogynistic macho moron, Ron is an intensely unlikeable character – until the spectre of AIDS stops him in his tracks, and leads him to become something like a decent human being.

But it’s arguably Leto, as the disaffected Rayon, who steals the show; his tragic-comic streetwalker ultimately finding some kind of true (platonic) love with the fast-deteriorating Woodroof, after attempting (and failing) to patch things up with his estranged father. The relationship between Ron and Rayon moves from mutual contempt to mutual respect, and their relationship is what lies at the heart of this film. Having said that, despite Ron’s improved character, we still see him as essentially a user with an unquenchable carnal appetite – the scene where he meets an HIV-infected woman for the first time leads inevitably into sordid territory, and the film rightly never seeks to portray him as a hero.
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Approved Performance, 28 Jan. 2014
By 
Mr. A. J. Richards "yourbiteall" (Weston Super Mare) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dallas Buyers Club [DVD] (DVD)
Well if you weren't a believer of the 'McConaughsance' you surely will be swayed after his outstanding turn as Ron Woodruf, an ignorant, blunt man who lives each moment as if it's his last until the day he is told that final day is coming around the corner very soon due to contracting the HIV virus. With terrific support from Jared Leto as his trans-gender pre-op confidante and Jennifer Garner as the smart non-judgemental doctor, Dallas Buyers Club slowly turns into the sort of movie that is worth your time and investment.
The character work in Craig Borten and Melisa Wallack's screenplay is sublime. offensive, ornery and devilishly confident, Ron remains a prickly rascal throughout, inappropriately selfless in how gloriously selfish he is. He staggers and swaggers through the film, refusing to die when the doctors say he should, persistent and confrontational to the end. you will be with him in spirit every step of the way.
there is also an interesting political, commercial aside going on especially towards the end of the film that adds textures and layers to the debate of the morality on show in the movie. Despite a harrowing subject it never overplays anything, remaining subtle for the most part and hardly a note of music is heard anywhere in terms of classical scoring.
If i had a gripe it would be to do with the pacing of the film..it can become a little confusing in terms of its time-line process but other than that this is the first great film of 2014. A film this bold and honest about imperfection and illness never felt so unashamed.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth a watch, 8 Jun. 2014
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Not something I would watch again, but the Mathews acting was absolutely amazing. Interesting, frustrating, scary, and gut wrenching story.
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Making changes inside the system by working outside the system, 14 Jan. 2014
By 
L. Power "nlp trainer" (San Francisco) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
1985. A sexually active, straight, carousing, drug abusing Texas rodeo cowboy collapses. At the hospital he is told he has HIV and has less than thirty days to live. Does he succumb to the diagnosis, or does something else happen entirely?

Dallas Buyers Club is based on a true story about Ron Woodruff. I must admit I was unfamiliar with this movie. The ticket seller gave me an unconvincing outline, and I was about to walk away when a couple overhearing our conversation assured me it was a good movie.

I am glad to say they were correct. This is the exact type of movie that wins Oscars, and gets many nominations.

Matthew Mc Conaughey deserves to be nominated for playing someone battling a deadly disease who takes on big drugs and the FDA, to enable other sufferers like himself to have access to supplements and life saving drugs. He reputedly lost about 40 pounds for the role, and at times does look very gaunt, which gives an added layer of reality to his portrayal.

This is a multi faceted movie full of interesting characters, which operates on multiple levels at once. The personal struggle, the parallel struggles and contrasts, and the battle against different facets of authority. Jennifer Garner in a supporting role plays a feisty yet compassionate doctor, while a colleague with more of an eye to profit becomes a doctor shill for big drugs, which are experimental, still unproven, and in the clinical trial stage, and may have toxic side effects, while our protagonist has to chase down a caring and competent doctor in Mexico who was disbarred, for less toxic alternatives.

Why does one experimental method, with an unproven drug, take priority over drugs that are unapproved by the FDA? Aren't drugs undergoing clinical trials also unapproved? In both cases aren't people offering themselves as guinea pigs, and why shouldn't they be allowed to do that? After all, it is their lives.

I loved this movie, and I found the story far more engaging than I thought I would beforehand. I was particularly intrigued and a little surprised by how hard hitting it was against the FDA, and the role it plays in connection with the big pharmaceutical companies, and how it restricts our access even to harmless supplements.

I love it when a character is resourceful, so I loved the answers he gives and FDA official when he is stopped and questioned at the border.

As often happens in a movie of this nature, there is more than one great performance. An unrecognizable Jared Leto gives a breathtaking performance as a gaunt transsexual also undergoing treatment who Ron meets, and who sources customers for him. Ray like others has to deal with Ron's homophobia, and it's refreshing to see how it plays out as the character develops. What I love is the journey the character makes through being confronted with his own mortality, and how that affects a wider circle of people.

If Leto does not get an Oscar nomination for his role then there is no justice in Hollywood. He would have to be a leading contender for Best Supporting Actor, as Matthew McConaughey would be for Best Actor.

One thing that has impressed me in recent years is McConaughey's transition from lightweight romcom, and pretty boy roles, to more challenging roles. For instance, I consider Lincoln Lawyer to be one of his best roles as a wheeler dealer lawyer but not the type of role for which an actor is typically nominated. He battles the system but has no weakness.

Actors win Oscars for playing two types of roles:

One is the psychopath, such as Daniel Day Lewis for There Will Be Blood, Javier Bardem for No Country for Old Men, and Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lecter.

The second is actors battling disabilities or diseases and/or social injustice. Recently Octavia Spenser won for playing a maid dealing with racial discrimination, Meryl Streep for playing a Prime Minister battling alzheimers, and Christian Bale for playing a former boxer battling drug addiction. Jennifer Lawrence won playing a character battling grief who acts out sexually. Bradley Cooper was nominated for playing someone with bipolar disorder in the same movie. Jeff Bridges won an alcoholic country singer. More recently the trend has been moving toward playing real life characters.

As often happens the best movies of the year are released in December and timed for an Oscar run. I think most people will love it
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bitter Sweet, often funny, 22 Jan. 2014
By 
Valerie J. (West Yorks, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Dallas Buyers Club [DVD] (DVD)
It's Dallas, mid 80s. No man imagines himself tougher and more manly than womanising Ron Woodroof (Matthew McConaughey), an electrician who hangs around rodeos, gambles, drinks, smokes, and uses drugs. When he has an accident at work and the hospital doctors tell him he is HIV positive, homophobic Ron hits the roof. While in denial, insisting it's all a big mistake, being told he has about 30 days to live has him worried. He realises that an experimental drug called AZT being tested on his hospital room-mate, a transgender called Rayon (Jared Leto) might just do the trick but Roy's denied it. Not one to take bad news lying down, he discharges himself from hospital and investigates HIV and AIDS on the internet. Taking matters into his own hands, with the help and hindrance of Rayon, Roy sources more natural remedies outside the USA and begins to sell them in the States but is confronted whichever way he turns by the FDA because the remedies are not approved.

Although AIDS and HIV are serious matters, Dallas Buyers Club (2013) manages to keep the tone light and it's really quite funny at times, mostly because of the interaction between homophobic Ron and Rayon who dresses like a woman and seems to go out of her/his way to provoke Ron. It reminded me very much of those wonderful movies, Transamerica (2005) and Breakfast on Pluto (2005).

I was shocked by the appearance of Matthew McConaughey who looks dangerously emaciated in his role as Ron Woodroof. Jared Leto also became stick thin for his role as Rayon. Such a dramatic weight loss for a movie is both impressive and alarming. I read that McConaughey said he found it harder to put the weight back on, something that a lot of us will find difficult to believe! He's not on his own in dieting for his art, actor Christian Bale did the same for The Machinist (2004).

Despite such an outstanding performance by McConaughey, I'm inclined to think the scene stealer in this show is Jared Leto who was perfection as the transgender, ever so feminine, ever so tolerant, 'friend' of Roy's.

VJ - Movies and Books World
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I PREFER TO DIE WITH MY BOOTS ON, 20 Jan. 2014
By 
The Movie Guy "Movies from A to Z" (United States) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
In 1985 Redneck rodeo hand, Ron Woodroof (Matthew McConaughey) contracts HIV and is given 30 days to live. Ron takes matters into his own hands and researches treatments. He travels to Mexico and meets a disbarred doctor who helps him obtain a treatment that fights off the disease better than anything approved by the FDA. He cannot legally sell the drug in the US, so with the aid of Rayon (Jared Leto in drag) forms a buyers club to skirt the law.

The film touches on the relationship between pharmaceutical companies and the FDA that fought against Ron's attempt to help people as clearly the law was designed to support them. The acting was top notch. For those who like true life the one man against the system might also like" Extraordinary Measures."

Parental Guide: F-bomb, sex, nudity
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's OK, so what, 8 Nov. 2014
By 
B. Knapp "Bazzoid/Sazzles" (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Dallas Buyers Club [DVD] (DVD)
There's no real underlying story or impact tbh. It races through the chain of events, never stopping long enough for any major emotional investment in the characters. Even more so than "Rush" it becomes like a highlight of a life. Because of the subject and the peer pressur ein Hollywood it got reviews above it's station and it's fashionable to like it.
Don;t get me wrong, though, MM and Leto act their parts awesomingly well - there's just nothing original, engaging or exciting.

Bascially, i came out the other end not emotionally moved and not any the wiser or more enlightened about anything.
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