The story of King George VI of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, his impromptu ascension to the throne and the speech therapist who helped the unsure monarch become worthy of it.
Helena Bonham Carter
Acting under the cover of a Hollywood producer scouting a location for a science fiction film, a CIA agent launches a dangerous operation to rescue six Americans in Tehran during the U.S. hostage crisis in Iran in 1980.
Based on an incredible true story of one man's fight for survival and freedom. In the pre-Civil War United States, Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery. Facing cruelty (personified by a malevolent slave owner, portrayed by Michael Fassbender), as well as unexpected kindnesses, Solomon struggles not only to stay alive, but to retain his dignity. In the twelfth year of his unforgettable odyssey, Solomon's chance meeting with a Canadian abolitionist (Brad Pitt) will forever alter his life. Written by
In an October 2013 interview with NPR, Steve McQueen mentioned that Solomon Northup's 1853 book reminded him of "The Diary of Anne Frank" from nearly a century earlier. McQueen noted that he lives in Amsterdam and that Anne Frank is a national hero in his home country; when Northup's book resonated the same way with him, he then resolved he would not rest until he had turned it into a movie. See more »
When Solomon Northup was playing the violin in the early scenes, the violin strings were made from synthetic material. The material at the time would have been catgut. See more »
Alright now, y'all fresh niggers. Y'all gonna be in the cuttin' gang.
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It's rare that a movie lives up to its hype, even rarer that the hype is transcended by the actual achievement. 12 YEARS A SLAVE does both. Aided by powerful performances and cinematography, director McQueen exposes the barbarity of dehumanisation, of treating people as property. Reviews focus on the brutality on display, and it's true that the film is not easy to watch, with its powerful juxtaposition of sublime scenery and human degradation. But to me the final scene is the most powerful of all: we are party to the kind of raw emotion that in the hands of lesser artists could easily descend into tawdriness or sentimentality. Here, as in the rest of the film, it is raised up high, as high as cinematic art can go.
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