12 YEARS A SLAVE (2013)
A film by Steve McQueen
Cast: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Kenneth Williams, Michael Fassbender
In 1841, Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor) lives a free black man in Saratoga, New York along with his wife Anne (Kelsey Scott), daughter Margaret (Quvenzhane Wallis), and son Alonzo (Cameron Zeigler). Solomon is very well educated and plays the violin. He takes off for several week to play the violin in a circus. He is recruited by Brown (Scoot McNairy) and Hamilton (Taran Killam). The two man drug solomon and when he wakes up he is chained up to the floor and thrown in the world of slavery which he can not escape and contact his love ones.
Horrible true story of a black man named solomon which he wrote the book. It took 2013 to tell his story to the screen and McQueen has done a terrific job here. I do not know how the man has survived 12 years of abusing masters, small portion meals, tight living quarters on the top of that found time to write it all as his memoirs. In the film when solomon drifts away you will get a flashback to how was his life back then from time to time so you get a sense to whom he was before he was a slave. The cast is fantastic and all star cast at that. Benedict Cumberbatch as a Baptist preacher and slave owner, Paul Giamatti as a man in charge of selling slaves and getting the best price for them, and Brad Pitt as a Canadian carpenter with an Amish beard. Most masters treats their slave like property they are not human to them they are things and can be replaced. Solomon has a different set of mind than most slave, he is more educated and can read and write but does not tell his masters that. Ejiofor is the star in this picture he turn a beautiful performance, he is the great British actor. Mcqueen makes sure that he gets some long shot of him thinking or looking somewhere thinking and you are pretty much know what is he thinking at a time like that. McQueen has this close up of him and you can see his facial expression changing. There are beating, death, desperation. Solomon knew how to survive he was smarter than most, and it was not easy. I doubt that you will see this film twice. It is a great piece of film making.