Well, this isn’t a great way to kick off the series. I wish I could begin with a more positive review, but I have a lot of things to say about this film so I might as well get them out now. Dallas Buyers Club is an atrocious movie. It’s the kind of film where it seems like everyone involved was completely half-assing it. Even the title card and the subtitles appear to be in the default font from some editing software. The script is stiff and artificial, the directing is soulless and purposeless, and almost all the actors are on auto-pilot. Save for one, of course.
When we complain that a movie is “too long,” what do we mean? It could be that it had too many scenes that weren’t necessary or entertaining. Maybe there was a pacing problem, and the film felt laborious and plodding. Some people complain that, in general, no movie really “needs” to be more than two hours long. There’s a great Roger Ebert quote that goes, “No good movie is too long, and no bad movie too short.” So when I walked out of The Wolf of Wall Street, I was confused. It was clearly a very sharp, smart, and enjoyable picture. But why was it three hours long? Continue reading Best Picture Odyssey: “The Wolf of Wall Street”