The AIDS epidemic was not a happy-ending story. But it was certainly a test of the human spirit. Ron Woodroof passed that test.
Just about everything is right with Dallas Buyers Club, beginning with Matthew McConaughey's literally transformative portrayal.
A solid biopic is made transcendent by McConaughey, who shed nearly 50 pounds and deserves to gain an Oscar for his ferocious, funny performance.
One of the best films of the year.
A straight-up portrait of a man who figured out a way to cling to life longer than anyone expected and, in the process, learned to let the world in.
Played with raw, rattling fury and grace by Matthew McConaughey, Woodroof is a tarnished protagonist of the first order.
"Dallas Buyers Club" takes audiences back to the worst of the AIDS crisis, where the disease was a death sentence, and the public's terror and hostility were at its height.
Vallee, working from a script by Craig Borten and Melisa Wallack, infuses the film with some humor - Woodroof's posing as a priest as he smuggles drugs from Mexico is a hoot - but he never lets us forget that the stakes are deadly serious.
Once we get past McConaughey's stunning transformation, we're transfixed by a performance that reminds us of why this guy became a movie star in the first place.