12 Years a Slave is destined to become one of the masterpieces of 2013. Last week, two films stood out over any film this year when it came to acclaim: Gravity and Rush. This week, Toronto International Film Festival champion 12 Years a Slave (2013) has undoubtedly ascended to that position. Its director, Steve McQueen, has only two feature films behind him: Hunger and Shame. Both films were well-received and both starred Michael Fassbender who reunited with the director for a third time in 12 Years a Slave. The film’s cast is stellar, the story is based on the heartbreaking story of Solomon Northrup and the director knows his craft. It is great to witness a film with great promise fulfill it.
In addition to Fassbender, the film stars Chiwetel Ejiofor, Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Giamatti, and more and reportedly all of them deliver spectacular award-worthy performances. Rotten Tomatoes has assigned the film a perfect 100 percent rating based on nine reviews which heap praise on the film, going as far as calling it ‘one of the most powerful film you ever watch’ or ‘the definite movie on slavery in America’. The words ‘devastating’, ‘terrifying’, ‘superb’, ‘powerful’ are used beyond count in those nine reviews alone. Recently, the subject of slavery was reawakened in Hollywood after last year’s Lincoln and Django Unchained and in 2013 we will have three motion pictures with big names in them regarding the historical sufferings of black people. Lee Daniels’ The Butler was deemed good but not exceptional and we are still yet to see Mandella: The Long Walk to Freedom with Idris Elba starring. It is highly unlikely, however, that any one of those films surpasses the glory that 12 Years a Slave is about to garner in the days, weeks, months, years to come.
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