Movie Review – Dallas Buyers Club

During Award Season, the Studios generously hold screenings of their nominated movies for members of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG). This past weekend, I attended a screening for Dallas Buyers Club. What was special about this screening was that the writers, producers, directors and stars were all there for a Q&A at the end! It was an honor to sit before these brilliant artists and listen to their stories behind the movie… and I will share some of those with you!  But first, if you haven’t seen this movie yet, watch the trailer!



Dallas Buyers Club Premieres in Beverly Hills

The movie was fantastic.  Of course, there were parts that were hard to watch (yes, there were drugs and sex in this movie), but it wasn’t glorified like it was in Wolf on Wall Street.  (Note: I had to make that note because the family went to see it the day after Christmas and we walked out.  Not a movie to see with your parents or little sister or her boyfriend.)

Dallas Buyers Club took over 10 years (after the movie was written) for it to finally get made.  There were different actors, directors and studios attached to the film.  They finally had Matthew McConaughey and director, Jean-Marc Vallee, attached and they planned to shoot in 2012.  Their backers pulled out last minute but Matthew had already started losing the weight… they were determined to make this film.  They ended up shooting the film on a 5 million dollar budget in 25 days with no lighting and one camera.  Amazing.


Matthew and Jared were incredible.  Jared completely transformed into his character, Rayon.  There was no trace of Jared Leto.  It was astonishing.  He should win every award he is nominated for.  It was the littlest things, like simple mannerisms or a look or a reaction, that you just couldn’t take your eyes off of him.  Matthew’s character, Ron, went through a full transformation.  Matthew said that his character (or Ron) didn’t have purpose until he found out that he had AIDS.  He now had something to fight for, and instead of destroying him, his disease turned him into a hero… a champion.  And Jennifer was a delight.  She added sweetness and heart to the movie.

One of the interesting facts about the movie is that the movie didn’t have a full score.  Jean-Marc purposefully chose not to have a score.  Matthew told a story about Jean-Marc’s role as the director of this movie.  He said directors can manipulate the audience.  They can force you to look at something by spotlighting it and going in for a close up or to have a score telling you how you should be feeling at every moment… but Jean Marc said, after one of the first takes,  that there was something special here and he had to do whatever he could to get out of the way.  The story itself is so raw and powerful and that’s how it should be seen.  Like real life and not a Hollywood movie.  Truly selfless move by a director and it made the movie what it is.

Go see it!

DallasBuyersClubReview6  Characters Photo Credit: Focus Features, Red Carpet Photo Credit: AKM-GSI/FAMEFLYNET

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