In 1986 in Dallas, a man diagnosed with HIV (McConaughey), began smuggling alternative medicine with Rayon, an HIV-positive transgender woman (Leto). It is loosely based on the true-life tale of Ron Woodroof, a drug taking, women loving, homophobic man who, in 1986 was diagnosed with HIV/AIDS and given thirty days to live. He started taking the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved AZT, the only legal drug available in the U.S, which brought him to the brink of death. To survive, he smuggled non-toxic, anti-viral medications from all over the world, but still illegal in the U.S. Other AIDS patients sought out his medications forgoing hospitals, doctors, and AZT. With the help of his doctor, Eve Saks (Garner) and a fellow patient, Rayon, Ron unintentionally created the Dallas Buyers Club, the first of dozens which would form around the country, providing its paying members with these alternative treatments. The clubs, growing in numbers and clientele, were brought to the attention of the FDA and pharmaceutical companies, which waged an all out war on Ron. DBC follows Ron Woodroof’s personal fight to survive, which had lasted 2191 days when he died on September 12, 1992, six years after he was diagnosed with HIV.
Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Garner in the “Dallas Buyer’s Club.” Photo by Ann Marie Fox/Focus Features