November 18, 2013
Dallas Buyers Club: An AIDS Drama the Tea Party Can Enjoy

So far, business is good for Dallas Buyers Club. The film sports a 95 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, pundits now consider Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto locks for Oscar nominations, and the box-office receipts have been high for its limited release.
But these accolades come with a caveat: Many commentators have criticized the film for its use of a “straight savior” character to convey the realities of the AIDS crisis in the 1980s. While it was gay people who were hit the hardest by the disease, and the country’s slow reaction to the epidemic was fueled at least in part by widespread homophobia, Buyers Club’s protagonist is a homophobic, chauvinistic Texan who contracts the virus through sex with a woman. When he learns that the Food and Drug Administration is running clinical trials on AZT, an ineffective drug with terrible side effects while better medication remains unapproved for use, he begins illegally importing the good stuff from Mexico and selling it to the gay community in Dallas.
The film is based on a true story. But the problem, perhaps best voiced by John Oursler at Sound and Sight, is that “Hollywood’s vision of AIDS is one where educated, white, and gay men become sick and where an altruistic, or entrepreneurial, straight man can swoop in and save the day if they so desire.”
Read more. [Image: Focus Features]

Dallas Buyers Club: An AIDS Drama the Tea Party Can Enjoy

So far, business is good for Dallas Buyers Club. The film sports a 95 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, pundits now consider Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto locks for Oscar nominations, and the box-office receipts have been high for its limited release.

But these accolades come with a caveat: Many commentators have criticized the film for its use of a “straight savior” character to convey the realities of the AIDS crisis in the 1980s. While it was gay people who were hit the hardest by the disease, and the country’s slow reaction to the epidemic was fueled at least in part by widespread homophobia, Buyers Club’s protagonist is a homophobic, chauvinistic Texan who contracts the virus through sex with a woman. When he learns that the Food and Drug Administration is running clinical trials on AZT, an ineffective drug with terrible side effects while better medication remains unapproved for use, he begins illegally importing the good stuff from Mexico and selling it to the gay community in Dallas.

The film is based on a true story. But the problem, perhaps best voiced by John Oursler at Sound and Sight, is that “Hollywood’s vision of AIDS is one where educated, white, and gay men become sick and where an altruistic, or entrepreneurial, straight man can swoop in and save the day if they so desire.”

Read more. [Image: Focus Features]

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    Saw this movie last weekend, and I’ve choked up at every ad for it I’ve seen since. Matthew McConaughey. Oscar. (via...
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    Innnnteresting
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    Can’t wait to see this. Janea?
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