Flashback: Dallas Buyers Club

I’ve just voted Dallas Buyers Club my 4th best film of the year in the writers’ poll which created ORWAV’s top 20.

In just 100 words, here’s why I loved Dallas Buyers Club.


Jean-Marc Vallée’s gripping tale of cowboy Ron Woodroof’s (Matthew McConaughey) transformation from foul-mouthed homophobe to resourceful AIDS-treating drug trafficker probed the immorality of pharma and FDA involvement with the AIDS crisis, without simply polarising the key players.

Making Woodroof an anti-heroic prejudiced paradigm through which to dispel common misconceptions about AIDS, Vallee’s film handled its subject with due sensitivity yet didn’t circumvent graphically presenting the disease. Shot sans lighting equipment in just 25 days, the result is a triumphant example of how much a modest budget can achieve, and masterfully avoids insincerity, sentimentality, and dialogue-as-exposition in favour of subtle storytelling.


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