Set in 1841 and living in New York with his wife and two children, making a living as a violist, Solomon Northup thinks he is about to play an out of town gig, only to be drugged and sold into slavery. Through bravery and co-operation, Solomon fights for survival but that doesn’t always get him in the good books of his master. After meeting a Canadian by chance, Solomon’s chances of reuniting with his family hang in the balance.
After bagging numerous awards at the Oscars, Golden Globes and BAFTA Awards, you may be curious as to why this film has become a massive hit.
Firstly, the film touches on history that some people try to avoid, because of how sensitive the subject matter is. However, Director Steve McQueen took on the challenge to highlight the past’s most horrendous history and has turned it into a masterpiece.
12 Years a Slave will tug at even the tightest of heart strings, with some scenes proving very difficult to watch.
Chiwetel Ejiofor (Salt and Savannah) plays the strong and determined Solomon Northup, committing to a demanding role that could challenge even the most professional actors to reach their emotional limits.
Brad Pitt (World War Z and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) stars as the Canadian, Bass, who Solomon relies on for one of the biggest favours he could ask for (but we won’t tell you what that is, because we’re not out to get you with spoilers). If you’re a fan of Brad Pitt’s previous work, we would recommend you adding this to the list of his best roles.
The one factor we found, which may sway the audience, is the historical influence that brought this film to life. Some people may find it too difficult to sit through, with emotions running high throughout, whereas others may be more or less interested in that period of time and watch it out of curiosity.
Overall, 12 Years a Slave highlights the torture and troubles of racial inequality in the United States, as well as providing an inspirational outlook, before the gap eventually closed between races.
Prepare for an emotional meltdown, excellent dialogue and acting at its finest.