Hollywood has heightened the bar to the stratosphere when it comes to sanctioning indecent behavior and individual responsibility in depicting the story of 'real life cowboy' Ron Woodroof.
The issue is not about homophobia, homosexuality, drug abuse, or the disenfranchised. It's about a much broader and dire one: society.
While the 'virtue' of the movie, Dallas Buyers Club, seems to steeped in its social commentary about how pharmaceutical companies, in consort with the FDA, denied people diagnosed with HIV and AIDS access to drugs to treat their disease in the 1980s, the bigger story applauds the entrepreneurial spirit of Ron Woodroof, a homophobic loser diagnosed as HIV positive, when he sets up a business to 'import' illegal drugs into Texas.
Since the FDA hasn't approved the use of the drugs in this country, despite apparent success in other countries, a desperate and dying Woodroof takes matters into his own hands.
After behaving like a first-class redneck engaged in reckless behaviors, from having unprotected sex with multiple partners and prostitutes, excessive drinking, and snorting cocaine (and who knows what other illegal substances), we are to believe that once the shock of his diagnosis sets in, he suddenly becomes an expert on the best options for treating people with the disease.
The Dallas Buyers Club, and stars Matthew McConaughey (Woodroof) and Jared Leto (portraying transgender Rayon) have been nominated for Oscars. But despite the brilliant performances of the cast, and Woodroof's very faint transition from despicable dirt-bag to empathetic entrepreneur and 'healer,' the bottom line is this:
If the academy is recognizing McConaughey's extradordinary commitment to his portrayal of his character, and Leto's stellar performance in his supporting role, then winning 'Best' is as much a sure thing as anything in Hollywood can assure.
But if embracing, or even accepting, Hollywood's premise that even the most lowly of souls can redeem themselves by taking up the gauntlet of 'savior,' without exploring the impact their risky lifestyles and poor choices have on their lives, is a sure sign that society is heading down a path that the Roman Empire took centuries ago.