Top News
WE CONTINUE TO SUPPORT MICHAEL-AN AWARD WINNING ACTOR

Congratulations to the cast and crew of "12 Years a Slave" winning an Oscar for Best Picture

Michael is currently filming "MacBeth"

Watch "12 Years A Slave" and "Frank" in theaters

Watch "The Counselor" and "12 Years A Slave" on DVD available now

Michael is set to star and produce on a film version of the video game "Assassin's Creed"

Completed projects: X-Men, Untitled Malik project

Upcoming projects Assassin's Creed, Prometheus 2, MacBeth,and more!

Header credit here

MFmultiply's Disclaimer


Order region 1 dvds-Amazon store

Order region 2-UK dvds-Amazon Shoppe

Please check the calender for films on TV, Theater, or dvd releases
September 2017
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
     12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930

Calendar Calendar


TYaS reviews

Page 1 of 3 1, 2, 3  Next

View previous topic View next topic Go down

TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Tue Feb 26, 2013 2:36 pm

http://blogs.indiewire.com/shadowandact/earlier-reactions-to-twelve-years-a-slave-suggests-average-black-audiences-wont-like-it

Early Reactions To 'Twelve Years A Slave' Suggest Average Black Audiences Won't Like It
News
by Tambay A. Obenson
February 22, 2013 12:12 PM

A film I'm eagerly-anticipating this year, which we believe will likely premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in May, is Steve McQueen's Twelve Years A Slave - one of 7 more slave-themed films I highlighted in a January post, that we can expect some time this year.

It's a film whose title was mentioned often in discussions about Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained, although, from what we know of McQueen's film, there's very little to compare between both films, other than they're both set during a time before slavery was outlawed in this country (the USA). But the narratives of each film, as well as the motivations of the filmmakers behind each film, are very different.

As we wait for an announcement on when McQueen's film will make its debut, as well as for a glimpse at the film, via a trailer, clips, or some official stills, test screenings of the film are currently taking place in a few cities across the USA, and some of our readers attended those test screenings and shared their reactions with us, although, more specifically, the reactions that attending audiences had to the film. So, no spoilers here.

I won't post every email I received, because they all had very similar reactions, but I thought this one was especially interesting in its focus on how black people in the audience received the film. So, check it out below.

As I told my comrades here at S&A, I'm sure Twelve Years A Slave will generate a lot of discussion within the black community. I certainly don't expect it to make anywhere near the box office that Django Unchained did. Not because of its quality - McQueen doesn't disappoint - but, again, these are 2 very different films (one was made strictly to entertain; the other - while its story of perseverance and triumph will move and even entertain you - will most certainly challenge you in ways the other did not). As I said a couple of months, if you were overwhelmed by the so-called realistic, disturbing violence in Django Unchained, you're not ready for Twelve Years A Slave, which, if you're familiar with McQueen's past work, and you've read the novel its based on, or read the script, is far more brutal than anything Tarantino showed you.

But, I'm looking forward to seeing it this year finally! Depending on who the distributor is, and what kind of marketing push it gets, Chiwetel Ejiofor could very well be in the mix for Best Actor during awards season next year; and obviously, Steve McQueen for Best Director. There could also be some Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress roles as well.

Without further ado, here's one reader-submitted reaction to reactions to the test screening of the film:

I'm a regular reader on your amazing site. I just wanted to let you know that I saw 12 years a Slave at a test screening. Technically, I can't say anything about it, but I just felt the need to write to you about it since it is heavily anticipated amongst the readers and creators of your site. It wasn't quite finished, it was a little long and still needs editing. However, I did enjoy it a lot. What I wanted to write about were the reactions of the crowd. The crowd was very diverse. I would say most of them were average movie-goers. There were also quite a few Black people in the crowd and of course cinephiles and film students. It seemed like a lot of Blacks (at least the ones that I was paying attention to) didn't like it. I mean the film is brutal and really dives into the horrors of slavery. There were no Black women dressed up like pets and there was no Dr. King Schultz (a White guy that the White audience could identify with as being cool and not a racist). Not to say all the White characters were evil racists, just saying there was no White Savior that had a huge part. The story was mostly Solomon's and really focused on Slave life. So I understand that it was going to be uncomfortable for many. A lot of Blacks lambasted it for not being inspirational or for not being fun and being too brutal. There were a few who have seen McQueen's previous films who liked it, but the majority of them did not. I guess they wanted a nicer sugar coated story like The Help or a fun Blaxploitation film like Django. I guess this just brings me to say what do we want? I mean not all Black people think alike or act the same. We are all different, but if we are shaking our heads at a more serious film about slavery then I'm just dumbfounded. I guess what I'm trying to say is maybe We are part of the problem with diversity among Black films. I mean if Black people do not want to see a serious film about slavery then why would anyone else? Why don’t we just fill the theatres with Tyler Perry's films and films like The Help or Jumping the Broom? Is that fair? We have many different stories to be told and I don’t think we should be subjected to just 3 or 4 types of films. Of course most of the Audience were average movie goers who have not seen Shame or Hunger. 12 Years a Slave would probably play better with the art-house crowd. Whites have the luxury of being the majority (in more ways than one) so it's much easier for them to have a diverse range of films. I just wanted to reflect a bit that's all and give my thoughts. Oh and I’m not saying that the film had a negative reception. Overall it was positively received. I just wanted to focus in on the reception from Blacks. I almost forgot, the N-word was dropped a lot. I know a lot of people were up in arms about that in Django.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Tue Feb 26, 2013 2:37 pm

http://blogs.indiewire.com/shadowandact/another-s-a-reader-gives-their-take-about-12-years-a-slave-and-the-audience-response

'Twelve Years A Slave' & Audience Response To It
Reviews
by Sergio
February 24, 2013 2:05 PM

And some of you aren't going to be happy....

I have to be honest and admit that you guys mystify at times. The reactions from S & A readers to certain pieces sometimes surprises. It doesn’t go the way one would expect. You’re a wacky bunch. (And I say that with love, of course)

Take for example, the recent piece in which a regular reader told us of their reaction, and those of the some of the audience, to a test screening of Steve McQueen’s 12 Years A Slave - HERE.

Some of you got quite upset and even accused the reader of making it up. Far from the case, there was an actual test screening (actually two in the area), and I know exactly the theater where the screening was held that the reader was in. In fact there have been several across the country.

However, several of you couldn’t believe that there would be black people who didn’t like a film about slavery. Why wouldn’t you believe that?

It all goes back to my recent piece about whether there is an audience for a serious, honest film about slavery to which I said there isn’t and I stand by that.

But once again, as I stated in my piece, don’t get me wrong, I can’t wait to see McQueen’s film and I am so glad that it got made. And, as I also said, I truly hope that I am completely wrong and the film is a success at the box office.

But let’s face it, the film has a tough road to hoe, and there’s going to be A LOT of resistance by people to see it. Lets be honest here, folks.

So with that, here is an e-mail that I personally received from another loyal S& A reader, who attended a test preview of the film in another city, and, this time, with a predominantly black audience, and the results were… well you can read for yourself below, completely unedited.

Though he did tell me that he was "upset that the audience was immature to the narrative".

But he starts off by answering my question - if moviegoers are ready for an honest realistic film about slavery…

No.

There is not.

This past Tuesday, I saw a sneak preview of "12 Years A Slave", and it was with a majority black audience. I was so disgusted at the commentary and the fact that people were laughing at some parts.

Now, I'm not an overly serious person when it comes to some films about slavery. There are some things you have to take with a grain of salt, but being a devoted fan of McQueen's work, I was prepared for it to be hurt.

The film was so heavy and, not traumatizing, but frustrating -- in a good way. And that's how you know he is doing his job, and doing it damn well. Particularly given the nature of the narrative, you would think that there would be some empathy amongst the audience. There was none. It ruined the film for me and it also hurt me. This is a film for the ages, to the point where this is a film that should be shown to classrooms all around the nation to truly expose the horrors of slavery. Roots was heavy, but it does make the aforementioned look -- well, I will just say it brings a new perspective to slavery.

Now, I loved Django Unchained, and I appreciate how Tarantino used his talent as an auteur to create such a distinguishing piece of cinema. However, it is in no way a replacement or commentary of history. Not sure if you noticed, but a lot of those slaves had free time on their hands. Playing on swings? Seriously? I was confused. And the one who obviously had a perm, but they tried to make it look "natural" and failed?

There was one genius at the screening that truly believed Django Unchained was a true story. Yes, maybe there were individuals like Django that existed, but that's not how it was marketed, that's not how it was sold, and as far as I'm aware, that is not true. The fact that they were comparing the two movies worried me. I hope to God she wasn't an educator. And if she is, the future generations are in big trouble.

Anyway, I do think 12 Years...if released at the proper time, will do well. It's a solid film with brilliant performances. Chiwetel (Ejiofor) was just amazing beyond comprehension, as was (Michael) Fassbender. They play incredibly well off of each other.

With that, like I said, I completely agree with you on the fact that audiences, and black audiences in particular, are not ready to see this film. It saddens me to no end that this is a reality. Yes, it is unfortunate that sometimes we are only relegated to this type of story in order to have some talent on the screen and behind the scenes. However, this is a story that needed to be told. And McQueen was the only person that could do it. For that effort, he deserves to have this be a box office success. I hope it works in his favor.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Sat Aug 31, 2013 1:43 pm

http://www.thewrap.com/movies/column-post/12-years-slave-stuns-telluride-114556


'12 Years a Slave' Stuns Telluride: Do We Have an Oscar Front-Runner?
Chiwetel Ejiofor, Lupita Nyong'o leap to front of awards conversation after first screening of Steve McQueen's brutal historical drama

Published: August 31, 2013 @ 6:45 am
By Chris Willman

The Telluride Film Festival is about nothing if not discouraging a sense of competition. But anyone at the fest representing the films that were riding a wave of Oscar hopes coming out of Cannes had to feel a bit unnerved by the world premiere of Steve McQueen’s slave drama “12 Years a Slave,” which rode into town Friday night and single-handedly sucked up all the awards talk in the room.

Suddenly, Chiwetel Ejiofor, a name not exactly on everyone’s lips, became the front-runner for Best Actor, at least as far as the immediate post-premiere tweet brigade was concerned.

Starring in the true-life story of a freeborn black man who was abducted by traders and sold into slavery in the pre-Civil War era, Ejiofor helped give sated passholders the feeling that they might now have seen four best actor contenders in the first day and a half of the festival – with Ejiofor joining a Telluride field already crowded with Bruce Dern in “Nebraska,” Oscar Isaac in “Inside Lleweyn Davis” and Robert Redford in “All is Lost.”

Ejiofor was hardly alone as an award likely at the Galaxy Theatre premiere.  Lupita Nyong'o is even less of a household name, but she jumped to the front of the Best Supporting Actress list for playing the hardest-suffering slave in McQueen’s brutal film — bypassing a long list of contenders despite noting, in the Q&A that followed the screening, that she was plucked out of Yale to have this as her very first feature credit.

Also on the dais was Michael Fassbender, whose supporting-actor nomination is a no-brainer, given how he takes a role that has no more than one dimension — as the purely evil slaveholder who makes Ejiofor’s and Nyong'o’s lives a living hell — and still manages to be riveting every moment he’s on screen.

That left only one of the cast members who came to Telluride, Brad Pitt, not being touted in social media and among Oscar bloggers as award-worthy, since his role as just about the only virtuous white man in the movie is brief and straightforward.

Getty Images
But Pitt (right, with Ejiofor) probably doesn’t mind being thus overshadowed, since he’s the picture’s producer.

“I’ve seen this film countless times now, and I find it a little bit difficult to speak directly afterwards,” Pitt told the crowd after the screening. “I think it might be more productive if we all just had a group walk around the block or something.”

That speaks to one possible hurdle the Fox Searchlight release might face on its way to winning Best Picture: It’s so chock full of beatings and whippings in its 133-minute running time that some Oscar voters may hit pause on their DVDs to go take a walk and never come back. But as far as further captive audiences for the captivity drama go, more standing ovations are likely in order.

The actors themselves said they’d had some difficulty accepting or going through with the parts. Said a muted Fassbender after the screening, “It’s the first time I’ve seen the movie, and I’m a little taken aback.”

When McQueen contended that Ejiofor had at first turned down the role, his leading man corrected him: “I needed a moment’s pause — which Steve took as a no,” he said. “I was aware of what it would mean and what it would take.”

Chiwetel Ejiofor and Michael FassbenderAs for Nyong'o, the then-Yale student who sent in an audition tape, McQueen said, “It was like searching for Scarlett O’Hara, it really was. Over a thousand girls auditioned for the part … It was looking for that kind of magic, that kind of beauty and grace—it’s very cliché, but when it happens on screen, a star is born.”

McQueen talked about the unlikely path he and screenwriter John Ridley took toward adapting the historical memoir of the same name. “I wanted to make a film about slavery, (but) I needed an in for the story, and I thought the idea of a free man who was kidnapped into slavery was my in, somehow,” he said.

After Ridley had toiled on a script with unsatisfying results, “My wife said to me, ‘Well, why don’t you look at a real account of slavery?’ Duh.”

McQueen’s wife found the source material, “and I could not believe I had not read this book before, and the vast majority of people I asked had no idea of the book. It basically was a script. My eyes popped out of my head. I couldn’t believe it: This was the film we wanted to make.”

And for Telluride attendees who relish enjoying the world’s first look at a front-runner, as they have previously with the likes of “Argo” and “Slumdog Millionaire,” "12 Years a Slave" was the film they wanted to see.


Last edited by Admin on Mon Sep 02, 2013 4:49 pm; edited 1 time in total

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Sat Aug 31, 2013 1:45 pm

http://www.indiewire.com/article/telluride-film-festival-review-steve-mcqueens-12-years-a-slave-anchored-by-brilliant-chiwetel-ejiofor-is-a-slavery-movie-for-the-ages?page=2#articleHeaderPanel

by Eric Kohn
August 31, 2013 3:33 AM

Telluride Film Festival Review: Steve McQueen's '12 Years a Slave,' Anchored By Brilliant Chiwetel Ejiofor, Is a Slavery Movie For the Ages

Faced with the daunting task of imbuing a remote dilemma with realism, Ejiofor matches McQueen's filmmaking skill. The actor's expression alone conveys a wholly unique set of emotions, blending exasperation, fear and rage that intensifies with each scene. McQueen gives his talent the same room to breathe that he does the story, peppering the movie with patient long takes that often build into exceptional set pieces: In one near death encounter, Northup stands on his tip toes with a noose around his neck, gazing and gasping at the surrounding plantation while the minutes crawl by. Later, at a funeral for a fallen slave, his fellowmen deliver a moving rendition of the cotton field staple "Roll, Jordan, Roll," and McQueen's camera presses in on Ejiofor's face as the man gradually joins in. The scene effectively completes Northup's transformation into the role of victim that he initially resisted. With his slow-burn approach, McQueen makes the air of defeat into an unnervingly visceral encounter.
Faced with the daunting task of imbuing a remote dilemma with realism, Ejiofor matches McQueen's filmmaking skill.

The technique serves to elaborate on the decade-plus period covered over the course of the movie's 133 minutes. During that passage of time, the mounting sense of dread never lets up. At the one-hour mark, Northup finds himself on the plantation of depraved slave owner Edwin Epps (a convincingly monstrous Michael Fassbender), whose harsh antics provide the ultimate threat to Northup's stamina. While there are hints of tension between Epps and a neighboring white man, the script largely sweeps aside the specifics of the drama in favor of generalities that foreground the vividness of Northup's emotional turmoil.

On Epps' planation, the slave encounters a suicidal woman (Lupito Nyong'o) subjected to virtually every form of abuse, which places Northup's desperation in the context of tragedies even deeper than his own. With the horrible finality of scenes where he witnesses other slaves meet worse fates -- whips and nooses figure prominently in the plot -- Northup takes on the role of spectator in a drama that predated his arrival.

It's all so credibly enacted that once Brad Pitt (whose Plan B productions produced the film) arrives in a bit part as a kind-hearted Canadian who visits the plantation and speaks out against slavery, the character's messianic qualities seem like a bit much. Yet by the time we get there, it's hard not to plead for an end to Northup's battle. More than a powerful elegy, "12 Years a Slave" is a mesmerizing triumph of art and polemics: McQueen turns a topic rendered distant by history into an experience that, short of living through the terrible era it depicts, makes you feel as if you've been there.

Criticwire grade: A+

HOW WILL IT PLAY? Well-received after its sneak peek at Telluride, "12 Years a Slave" should continue receiving accolades as it next plays in Toronto and New York. Ejiofor is a lock for Best Performance in the Oscar race, as is McQueen and his movie.


_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Sat Aug 31, 2013 1:46 pm

http://variety.com/2013/film/reviews/film-review-12-years-a-slave-steve-mcqueen-1200593984/

Telluride Film Review: ’12 Years a Slave’

Email Print
2Talk

12 Years a Slave
August 31, 2013 | 01:20AM PT
This epic account of an unbreakable soul makes even Scarlett O’Hara’s struggles seem petty by comparison.
Peter Debruge
Senior Film Critic @AskDebruge

Had Steve McQueen not already christened his previous picture thus, “Shame” would have been the perfect one-word title to capture the gut-wrenching impact of his third and most essential feature, “12 Years a Slave.” Based on the true story of free black American Solomon Northrup’s kidnapping and imposed bondage from 1841 to 1853, this epic account of an unbreakable soul makes even Scarlett O’Hara’s struggles seem petty by comparison. But will audiences have the stomach for a film that rubs their faces in injustice? As performed by Chiwetel Ejiofor, Northrup’s astounding story is too compelling not to connect with American audiences, and important enough to do decent business abroad as well.
Get Variety News and alerts free to your inbox

The first thing fans of McQueen’s “Hunger” and “Shame” will notice here is the degree to which the helmer’s austere formal technique has evolved — to the extent that one would almost swear he’d snuck off and made three or four films in the interim. Composition, sound design and story all cut together beautifully, and yet, there’s no question that “12 Years a Slave” remains an art film, especially as the provocative director forces audiences to confront concepts and scenes that could conceivably transform their worldview.

If “Django Unchained” opened the door, then “12 Years a Slave” goes barreling through it, tackling its subject with utmost seriousness. The film opens in a world where slavery is a fact of life and Northrup has no recourse to challenge his captivity. Duped and drugged on a bogus job interview, he awakens in shackles and is beaten ferociously when he dares to assert his status as a free man. Some may wonder why he doesn’t continue to protest, forgetting that the word of a black man in pre-Civil War America had almost no legal currency, especially if said individual was unable to produce his free papers.

Assuming Northrup wants to survive, a fellow hostage advises, he must do and say as little as possible, in addition to hiding his ability to read and write. “I don’t want to survive,” Northrup bellows. “I want to live!” Separated from his wife and children, he faces a situation where the entire society is stacked against him. While not every white person in the film is evil, they willingly participate in a system that demeans their fellow man, and the injustice is too great simply to forget and move on (as Hollywood and society would evidently prefer).

Alarmingly, the few films of the past century to engage directly with the institution of slavery have nearly all come from the exploitation sphere, fetishizing aspects of violence and sexual abuse that McQueen endeavors to cast in a different light. An early scene in which slave trader Theophilus Freeman (Paul Giamatti) prods naked slaves for the benefit of prospective buyers offers an alarming yet in-no-way-arousing corrective to an equivalent sequence in the tasteless 1971 mock-doc “Goodbye Uncle Tom,” which lingers on the nudity and degradation of such a market. There’s little ambiguity in these unflattering depictions, though neither is there opportunity for audiences to misconstrue them as erotic.

To simplify Northrup’s memoir, John Ridley’s script lets the character — stripped even of his identity as he is redubbed Platt Hamilton en route to market — change hands just three times over the course of the film. Two of those owners, played by Benedict Cumberbatch and Bryan Batt, are as decent as the circumstances permit, even going so far as to encourage the fiddle playing with which he previously earned his living in upstate New York. The third, Edwin Epps (Michael Fassbender), becomes the bane of Northrup’s existence — a man who justifies his actions according to scripture and prides himself in “breaking” disobedient slaves.

On Epps’ plantation, “Platt” is expected to pick 200 pounds of cotton each day and is savagely beaten every time he falls short. For sheer productivity, none of the slaves comes close to Patsey (Lupita Nyong’o), a soft-spoken beauty of whom Epps is especially fond, much to the consternation of his severe wife (Sarah Paulson). This jealous big-house matriarch is a familiar character among such exploitation movies as “Mandingo,” constantly jealous that her husband prefers the favors of a slave, and yet Paulson dodges the caricature, even when throwing a heavy crystal decanter in Patsey’s face or urging her husband to beat the life out of her.

Such cruelty is commonplace in the film’s first two hours, and though audiences might not pick up on the technique, McQueen applies the same unflinching approach to these moments that he used in “Hunger” and “Shame”: long uninterrupted takes that force us to absorb the full impact of human mistreatment, as when Northrup survives a lynching attempt, only to dangle from a noose for several minutes while his fellow slaves move about in the background, too nervous to cut him down. This scene also perfectly illustrates McQueen’s knack for letting the characters’ behavior inform the sociology of the situation, rather than explaining things overtly through dialogue.

Though arguably too harsh for young eyes, “12 Years a Slave” will serve as an important teaching tool, giving audiences who’ve never witnessed the dynamics of slavery an impression of how the system worked. As in Northrup’s near-hanging, we see that even though slaves far outnumbered their white masters, harsh discipline could serve to discourage organization by playing upon their survival instincts. Few scenes this year could be more depressing than Patsey begging Northrup to end her suffering, unless you count the one in which Epps forces him to beat her nearly to death — another exchange heightened by the way McQueen constructs the entire sequence within a single shot, as the agitated camera circles her abuse.

Actors like Nyong’o don’t come along often, and she’s a stunning discovery amidst an ensemble that carves out room for proven talents such as Paul Dano, Alfre Woodard and Brad Pitt to shine. Though the film brims with memorable characters, the show ultimately belongs to Ejiofor, who upholds the character’s dignity throughout. McQueen shrewdly limits everything audiences see and feel to the sphere of Northrup’s direct experience, drawing us into his head and keeping us there by including occasional shots in which this hyper-intelligent individual (in many ways the superior of his captors) struggles to make sense of his station.

When it comes time to bestow awards, voters tend to prefer characters who suffer to those who abuse, and yet, this actorly transformation may be Fassbender’s most courageous yet, tapping into a place of righteous superiority that reminds just how scary such racism can be. In many respects, “12 Years a Slave” works like a horror movie, beginning with a “Saw”-style abduction and proceeding through subsequent circles of hell, the tension amplified by a score that blends chain-gang clanging with those same foghorn blasts Hans Zimmer used in “Inception.” As captured by cinematographer Sean Bobbitt, however, a rare beauty suffuses even the most infernal situations.

This radiant aesthetic, coupled with the rousing use of spiritual songs, provide a beacon of optimism amidst so much hate, once again proving cinema’s place as the ultimate human-rights medium. It’s a shame that such injustice was allowed to exist for so long — 12 years for Northrup and nearly 250 for those less fortunate — and an even bigger disgrace that it takes a British director to stare the issue in its face.
Telluride Film Review: '12 Years a Slave'

Reviewed at Telluride Film Festival, Aug. 30, 2013. MPAA Rating: R. Running time: 134 MIN.
Production

A Fox Searchlight release of a Regency Enterprises, River Road Entertainment presentation of a River Road, Plan B, New Regency production in association with Film 4. (International sales: Summit Entertainment, Los Angeles.) Produced by Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, Bill Pohlad, Steve McQueen, Arnon Milchan, Anthony Katagas. Executive producers, Tessa Ross, John Ridley.
Crew

Directed by Steve McQueen. Screenplay, , based on the . Camera (Deluxe color, widescreen), Sean Bobbitt; editor, Joe Walker; music, Hans Zimmer; production designer, Adam Stockhausen; art director, David Stein; set decorator, Alice Baker; costume designer, Patricia Norris; sound (Dolby Digital/Datasat), Kirk Francis; sound designer, Leslie Shatz; supervising sound editors, Ryan Collins, Robert C. Jackson; re-recording mixers, Shatz, Collins; visual effects supervisor, Dottie Starling; visual effects producer, Lauren Ritchie; visual effects, Wildfire Post NOLA, Crafty Apes; special effects coordinator, David Nash; special effects prosthetics, Tinsley Studio; stunt coordinators, Andy Dylan, Steven Ritzi, Lex Geddings; associate producer, Bianca Stigter; assistant director, Doug Torres; casting, Francine Maisler.
With

Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Garret Dillahunt, Paul Giamatti, Scoot McNairy, Lupita Nyong’o, Adepero Oduye, Sarah Paulson, Brad Pitt, Michael Kenneth Williams, Alfre Woodard, Chris Chalk, Taran Killam, Bill Camp.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Sat Aug 31, 2013 1:47 pm

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/race/telluride-steve-mcqueens-12-years-618625


AUG
30
11 HRS
Telluride: Steve McQueen's '12 Years a Slave' Met with Shock and Awe at World Premiere
10:09 PM PDT 8/30/2013 by Scott Feinberg

Steve McQueen's third film reunites him with Michael Fassbender and pairs him for the first time with Brad Pitt, but its unmistakable star is Chiwetel Ejiofor.

TELLURIDE, Colo. -- 12 Years a Slave, a drama based on the remarkable true story of a free black man from the north who was deceived and sold into slavery in the south in mid-19th century America, had its world premiere Friday evening here at the Galaxy Theatre. The film was greeted with thunderous applause when its end credits began to roll; moments later, the audience offered a standing ovation as its director, Steve McQueen, and principal stars -- the British actor Chiwetel Ejiofor, McQueen regular Michael Fassbender, Kenyan newcomer Lupita Nyong'o and Brad Pitt, who is also a producer of the film -- were introduced for a brief Q&A. The film, which will next screen at the Toronto Film Festival, will be released by Fox Searchlight on Oct. 18.
our editor recommends
Telluride: World's First Screening of 'Prisoners' Leaves Audience Stunned
Telluride: 'Blue Is the Warmest Color' Lands Stateside, Looking For a Way Into Oscar Race
'Shame' Director Steve McQueen on Making His NC-17 Sex Addiction Drama (Video)

Word leaked early in the fest that 12 Years would be a “TBA screening,' and the attendant excitement drew a full house that included Ralph Fiennes, Ken Burns, Michael Moore, J.C. Chandor and Cheryl Boone Isaacs, the recently-elected, first black president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. By the time the theater emptied out, few hadn't shed a tear in response to the emotional rollercoaster on which they had just journied.

PHOTOS: Telluride Film Festival: The Films

McQueen's previous two films -- Hunger (2008), which is about a hunger striker, and Shame (2011), which is about a sex addict -- both also debuted at Telluride. And like them, Twelve Years is an extremely dark and disturbing work that will almost certainly resonate more with critics than the general public. But unlike those earlier two films, which received a grand total of zero Oscar nominations, this one, because of its larger historical canvas and the magnificent performances from its giant ensemble cast, will almost certainly resonate more with the Academy.

Indeed, I believe that it will strongly contend for noms in the categories of best picture, best director (McQueen, for biting off more than ever before and capably chewing it), best actor (Ejiofor, for his total commitment in every scene of the film), best supporting actor (Fassbender, for playing a brutal Southern slave owner), best supporting actress (N'yongo, for portraying a slave who endures heartbreaking brutality), best adapted screenplay (for John Ridley's take on Solomon Northup's 1853 autobiography of the same title) and best original score (Hans Zimmer).

The film -- which also features fine work by Sarah Paulson, Michael Kenneth Williams, Paul Dano, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Giamatti, Alfre Woodard, Garret Dillahunt, Adepero Oduye and Beasts of the Southern Wild stars Quvenzhane Wallis and Dwight Henry -- is one of several 2013 awards contenders that tackle the subject of race in America, along with Fruitvale Station, Lee Daniels' The Butler and 42. A year after similar subject matter was presented with humor in the best picture-nominated Django Unchained, it is being treated with the utmost realism and seriousness in these films. And, as we celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech, with a black president in the White House but racial tensions amongst the general population still high, that seems right.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Sat Aug 31, 2013 1:49 pm

http://thefilmstage.com/news/first-stellar-reactions-from-steve-mcqueens-12-years-a-slave-arrive-from-telluride/

First Stellar Reactions From Steve McQueen’s ’12 Years a Slave’ Arrive From Telluride
Posted by Jordan Raup, on August 31, 2013 at 12:02 am

After Venice Film Festival held the premiere of Alfonso Cuaron‘s Gravity (reactions here), one of fall’s other most-anticipated films has now been screened. Getting the jump on its Toronto International Film Festival premiere, Telluride held a “secret” preview of Steve McQueen‘s period drama 12 Years a Slave. Although only a few critics were in attendance, we’ve rounded up a batch of reactions, which are heavy on the positive side, praising Chiwetel Ejiofor‘s lead performance.

While there are one too many mentions of next year’s dog and pony show, check out the reactions below for the film also starring Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Paul Giamatti, Lupita Nyong’o, Sarah Paulson, Brad Pitt and Alfre Woodard, which will be updated as more reviews come in. One can also check back for our full review, which will arrive next week during the film’s official world premiere and if you missed the news, it’ll be screening at New York Film Festival ten days before it hits theaters.

Peter DeBruge at Variety:

Had Steve McQueen not already christened his previous picture thus, “Shame” would have been the perfect one-word title to capture the gut-wrenching impact of his third and most essential feature, “12 Years a Slave.” Based on the true story of free black American Solomon Northrup’s kidnapping and imposed bondage from 1841 to 1853, this epic account of an unbreakable soul makes even Scarlett O’Hara’s struggles seem petty by comparison. But will audiences have the stomach for a film that rubs their faces in injustice? As performed by Chiwetel Ejiofor, Northrup’s astounding story is too compelling not to connect with American audiences, and important enough to do decent business abroad as well.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Mon Sep 02, 2013 4:51 pm


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/31/12-years-a-slave-reviews-telluride_n_3848373.html?utm_hp_ref=entertainment

'12 Years A Slave' Reviews From Telluride: 'Masterful,' 'Phenomenal,' 'Slavery Movie For The Ages'

The Huffington Post | By Christopher Rosen Posted: 08/31/2013 9:37 am EDT | Updated: 08/31/2013 9:41 am EDT

On the last Friday in August of 2012, Ben Affleck's "Argo" made a surprise debut at the Telluride Film Festival. The film was met with rapturous reviews from critics attending the prestigious and secretive fest, with many early viewers already predicting Oscar nominations for Affleck's third feature. Six months later, "Argo" was named Best Picture at the 85th annual Academy Awards.

Whether that trajectory happens with Steve McQueen's "12 Years A Slave," of course, remains to be seen. The film, however, was a surprise addition to the already impressive Telluride Film Festival schedule on Friday night, and critics are gushing about the slavery drama, McQueen's third feature, in ways they haven't gushed thus far this year.

"Steve McQueen's '12 Years a Slave,' Anchored By Brilliant Chiwetel Ejiofor, Is a Slavery Movie For the Ages," reads the headline on Eric Kohn's A-plus review for Indiewire. The piece is no less enthusiastic, with Kohn writing that "Ejiofor is a lock for Best Performance in the Oscar race, as is McQueen and his movie."

Kohn's sentiments were echoed both by the audience response to the film's debut screening (THR described the applause as "thunderous"), and awards pundits. THR Oscar expert Scott Feinberg wrote that "12 Years A Slave" should not only factor in the Best Picture, Best Director and Best Actor race, but also in the supporting categories, where Michael Fassbender (as a slave owner) and newcomer Lupita Nyong'o stand good chances of breaking through.

Based on the memoir by Solomon Northup, "12 Years A Slave" tells the story of a man (Ejiofor) who was kidnapped into slavery in 1841 and forced to spend 12 years living in increasingly brutal circumstances. Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano and Bryan Batt play various oppressors, with Nyong'o, Sarah Paulson, Alfre Woodard, Paul Giamatti, Michael K. Williams, Quvenzhane Wallis, Dwight Henry, Taran Killam, Scoot McNairy, Garret Dillahunt and Brad Pitt rounding out the film's massive supporting cast.

"Had Steve McQueen not already christened his previous picture thus, 'Shame' would have been the perfect one-word title to capture the gut-wrenching impact of his third and most essential feature," wrote Variety critic Peter Debruge. "This epic account of an unbreakable soul makes even Scarlett O’Hara's struggles seem petty by comparison."

"12 Years A Slave" will also screen at the Toronto International Film Festival and New York Film Festival. Fox Searchlight is set to release the film on Oct. 18. More reactions from Telluride attendees can be found in the tweets below.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Mon Sep 02, 2013 4:52 pm

http://blogs.indiewire.com/shadowandact/telluride-review-in-steve-mcqueens-12-years-a-slave-black-pain-is-hard-torturous-visceral

Telluride Review: In Steve McQueen's '12 Years A Slave' Black Pain Is Hard, Torturous & Visceral
Reviews
by Frances Bodomo
August 31, 2013 3:03 PM

On his motivation for making 12 Years A Slave, Steve McQueen says with his usual sardonic wit, "I wanted to make a slave movie."

Yes, 12 Years A Slave is rife with the markers of a slave movie: mute negro masses, violent lashings, broken skin, objectified black bodies, chains, negro spirituals, self-pity. And my gut instinct resisted this iconography that usually asks me to feel blanket emotion, these visual markers that usually make black pain easy… because how can I not feel anything here? I am resistant to most war movies, Holocaust movies, and African genocide movies for the same reason.

But I am thankful McQueen did not break free of this iconography. He uses these markers to keep us rooted in both the physical and—more interestingly—the existential restrictions of the time.

12 Years is refreshingly not a slave revolt movie. It is not the rhythmic fever dream of Hunger, and thankfully so. Because in this era we are far enough from Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad, far enough from the Civil War. By keeping us firmly rooted in the tense twists and turns of a largely uncaring world, McQueen crafts a slave narrative filled with specific interiority and existential significance. We have little poetic respite—though Sean Babbitt's cinematography is literally breathtaking—we have no comfort in the distance of poetry. We must be drawn through the minutiae of obstacle after obstacle, punishment after punishment, betrayal after betrayal.

And it is physically draining.

12 Years A Slave is not a pity party, it is a heart-clenching horror film. It is not a sad film (because I am not distanced from these characters), it is tense and draining and gut-wrenching and uncomfortable. In the horror tradition, the objectification of pain—rather than "poeticizing' of their pain—is used to stunning result. As Solomon makes Sisyphean attempt after Sisyphean attempt at his escape, we are drawn through a tense and chilling journey with little respite.

I tell you, black pain in most other films is easy. Here, in the high altitude hills of Telluride, my heart was threatening to stop.

This is its greatest triumph.

I have never felt turned on during a slave movie; I have never giggled at a slapstick tumble during a slave movie; I have never felt so powerless and simultaneously refreshed during a slave movie. This audience involvement—borne from the complex ways in which we are asked to partake in the drama—is what makes this different from any other slave narrative I have ever seen.

Where Django was distanced in its postmodernity, where Lincoln was an apologist retelling that relegated blackness to naive dignity, this new installment in America's current obsession with slave narratives successfully achieves moments of—heck, rolling landscapes of—interiority.

Despite its rigidly temporal title, McQueen is masterful in removing a sense of the passage of time. We traverse the 12 years through escape tactic after escape tactic, struggle after struggle. At no point do we feel that Solomon is making a teleological journey towards his escape, that he is laying down building blocks towards freedom. No the (admittedly anachronistic) American idea of upward movement is not available to him. His attempts often twist him back to where he began. In fact—in a fantastic move—we are only ever cognizant of time when Solomon returns home to see that his young children are now grown. My heart fell deep into my belly, "Oh s$#!! It's been 12 years!"

As expected, the performances are just stunning. Most notable is newcomer Lupita Nyong'o, whose tempered treatment of both her character's pain and sexuality evokes a specific existential melancholia. To see a negress accused of such a complicated emotion as insolence!

Michael Fassbender shines in yet another chillingly charismatic role (honestly, the McQueen-Fassbender duo can do no wrong). The star-studded cameo list does not disappoint.

And then there is Chiwetel Ejiofor. In all honesty, going in, I was worried about his interpretation of Solomon. He tends to play characters with such dignified black pain and I was fearful his role could easily slide into Oscar-pandering. But as Solomon sits stiff in the presence of white men, I am reminded painfully of the way in which my Ghanaian elders curl their Rs in the presence of white people.

I ask: Solomon, are you really free in this world?

Thanks to Ejiofor relentlessly holding on to the dignity of his character, I am free to question him as a subject and not an object: what character traits led Solomon to be sold? Does he take too much pride in praise from the white men around him? Why does he so believe in the legal system (procuring his free papers to prove his freedom)? As a freed black man, does he not question a legal system in which his kin are still enslaved? Because the film is so loyal and relentless in stripping him of the affect of his socialization, it is exhilarating to watch dignified Ejiofor go through the twists and turns of a character that is being robbed of his identity, humanity, psychology. His reaction to this is full-bodied, fluid, and heartbreaking.

Solomon's psychology, which begins rife with flashbacks, is literally stripped of him. The flashbacks disappear to make way for mechanized bodies moving in perfectly-framed shots.

When Solomon finally gets his chance to escape, we finally see him as we haven't been able to yet: a long, slow, closeup with the POV sounds of the lush bayou ringing on about him. He has his psychology—his humanity—back.

McQueen is masterful. He explores characters through their attitude in this restrictive world, thereby giving them a sense of agency. But it is suggested early on that, for slaves, all tactics at betterment have universally brought them to the same despairing place. Seeing how each person has reacted to this fate is refreshing and intensely human.

McQueen explores nuances of character and attitude without falling prey to the sentimentality with which we regard our ancestors' struggle, the way in which we tend to unify their interiority. The intersection of these varying attitudes further intensifies the despair in a time right before the Underground Railroad, the Civil War, and Juneteenth.

With no end in sight, McQueen treats violence with finesse. He does not simply employ off-screen violence, he specifically shows the violence being enacted and keeps the recipient of this violence off-screen. A mother's pleas to not be separated from her children are out of focus, her voice is off-screen as cold-faced slave owners barter; a young woman's body is off-screen as we are see the contorting face of the slave owner; a woman's cries ring above a pristine powder-colored church service. McQueen shows us the products of such violence in later scenes—scars, open gashes, bloodied eyes, broken skin—to achieve a peculiar objectification of the black body that evokes empathy, not sympathy.

Once again, my visceral disgust puts me in the story. Within this framework, we are asked to watch violent acts in long (looong!) takes with all other people in frame simply milling about and going on with their day. This violence is everyday. And the camera serves to heighten this relentless, cold objectivity in the face of suffering. It is chilling, I am stunned, I am begging for the sequence to stop. I do not feel pity, I feel visceral pain and discomfort.

And what is more powerful than that?

As I rose with the largely white, upper-class audience—sorry, gotta say it—into a standing ovation, I wondered if we were feeling the same kind of catharsis.

Ultimately, though McQueen's usage of the slave narrative iconography is specific, it is still present. I am preparing myself to be stunned when, come awards season, this daring and heartfelt treatment of slavery will be assimilated into the sympathy and pity of "easy" black pain. I sincerely hope that the discourse will do justice to the fact that, in 12 Years A Slave, black pain is hard and draining and torturous and visceral.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Mon Sep 02, 2013 4:56 pm

http://www.filmschoolrejects.com/features/early-12-years-a-slave-reax-a-powerful-must-see-punch-to-the-gut.php

Early ’12 Years a Slave’ Reax: Best Picture Material
Features By Scott Beggs on September 2, 2013

12 Years a Slave

It feels a bit like the broader movie world is about to learn who Steve McQueen is. After they have the same chuckle over his name most hardcore prestige fans had several years ago, they’ll marvel at his abilities as a dramatic filmmaker. With 12 Years a Slave, he’s partnered once again with Michael Fassbender, dragging the actor through an arduous role to come out clean on the other side. He’s also got Chiwetel Ejiofor bringing staunch prowess to the lead role of a free Northerner named Solomon Northrup who is captured and sold into slavery.

In the early reviews from Telluride, critics are standing outside Ejiofor’s house with a sign that says, “To me you are perfect.”

Greatly encouraging in the same vein as the early Gravity responses from Venice, this film looks poised to punch awards season in the gut and plant an accomplished yet still budding auteur into more mainstream ground. Here’s what people are saying:

William Goss, Film.com

“Slave might be the most grimly accurate depiction of American slavery committed to film, which in turn threatens to render monotonous countless inhumane offenses as the story stretches into its third hour. It’s not that McQueen and writer John Ridley (working from Northup’s own memoir) could help it, assuming they even wanted to. The subject matter doesn’t exactly invite comic relief, while cutting away to Solomon’s surely concerned family up north would have rung false and detracted from such an aptly oppressive experience.

McQueen nonetheless manages to reinvigorate these cruelties on each occasion, whether cutting between the sounds of music and the sights of agony during scenes of mandatory celebration or forced separation, or subtly incorporating his trademark long take during an extended whipping scene as the potential for maximum emotional and physical anguish aligns with a harsh sense of inevitability. For the most part, these high emotions are matched well by Hans Zimmer’s score, although the odd flair of “Inception”-like bombast deflates one particularly tense encounter early on.”

Kris Tapley, HitFix

Eric Kohn, IndieWire

“More than a powerful elegy, 12 Years a Slave is a mesmerizing triumph of art and polemics: McQueen turns a topic rendered distant by history into an experience that, short of living through the terrible era it depicts, makes you feel as if you’ve been there.”

Anne Thompson, Thompson on Hollywood

Chris Willman, The Playlist

“A parade of character actors famous for playing sleazeballs get to mistreat Solomon, starting with Paul Giamatti, and including Paul Dano as an imbecile sub-“master” who can’t stand the thought that there might be an educated slave in the midst. Transfers in ownership ensure that Solomon’s lot goes from bad to worse to worst, as he finally ends up in the hands of notorious “slave-breaker” Edwin Epps (Fassbender). Epps isn’t even the most villainous of the many detestable white people in the movie: that would be his jealous and bloodthirsty wife, played by Sarah Paulson, who makes Lady MacBeth look like Olive Oyl.”

Eugene Kovikov, Film Blather

“12 Years a Slave is a more conventional effort than Hunger or Shame, but it’s every bit as searing and tough-minded, and hardly less challenging. McQueen has edged toward the mainstream without surrendering what made him interesting, which is great to see.”

Peter Debruge, Variety

“When it comes time to bestow awards, voters tend to prefer characters who suffer to those who abuse, and yet, this actorly transformation may be Fassbender’s most courageous yet, tapping into a place of righteous superiority that reminds just how scary such racism can be. In many respects, 12 Years a Slave works like a horror movie, beginning with a Saw-style abduction and proceeding through subsequent circles of hell, the tension amplified by a score that blends chain-gang clanging with those same foghorn blasts Hans Zimmer used in Inception. As captured by cinematographer Sean Bobbitt, however, a rare beauty suffuses even the most infernal situations.

This radiant aesthetic, coupled with the rousing use of spiritual songs, provide a beacon of optimism amidst so much hate, once again proving cinema’s place as the ultimate human-rights medium. It’s a shame that such injustice was allowed to exist for so long — 12 years for Northrup and nearly 250 for those less fortunate — and an even bigger disgrace that it takes a British director to stare the issue in its face.”

Tom Shone, The Guardian

dashes

12 Years a Slave hits theaters October 18th.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Mon Sep 02, 2013 4:57 pm

http://thefilmstage.com/news/first-stellar-reactions-from-steve-mcqueens-12-years-a-slave-arrive-from-telluride/

First Stellar Reactions From Steve McQueen’s ’12 Years a Slave’ Arrive From Telluride
Posted by Jordan Raup, on August 31, 2013 at 12:02 am

After Venice Film Festival held the premiere of Alfonso Cuaron‘s Gravity (reactions here), one of fall’s other most-anticipated films has now been screened. Getting the jump on its Toronto International Film Festival premiere, Telluride held a “secret” preview of Steve McQueen‘s period drama 12 Years a Slave. Although only a few critics were in attendance, we’ve rounded up a batch of reactions, which are heavy on the positive side, praising Chiwetel Ejiofor‘s lead performance.

While there are one too many mentions of next year’s dog and pony show, check out the reactions below for the film also starring Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Paul Giamatti, Lupita Nyong’o, Sarah Paulson, Brad Pitt and Alfre Woodard, which will be updated as more reviews come in. One can also check back for our full review, which will arrive next week during the film’s official world premiere and if you missed the news, it’ll be screening at New York Film Festival ten days before it hits theaters.

Peter DeBruge at Variety:

Had Steve McQueen not already christened his previous picture thus, “Shame” would have been the perfect one-word title to capture the gut-wrenching impact of his third and most essential feature, “12 Years a Slave.” Based on the true story of free black American Solomon Northrup’s kidnapping and imposed bondage from 1841 to 1853, this epic account of an unbreakable soul makes even Scarlett O’Hara’s struggles seem petty by comparison. But will audiences have the stomach for a film that rubs their faces in injustice? As performed by Chiwetel Ejiofor, Northrup’s astounding story is too compelling not to connect with American audiences, and important enough to do decent business abroad as well.

Eric Kohn at Indiewire:

There are echoes of the paranoid urgency and claustrophobic McQueen memorably built around a single setting in “Hunger,” but “Slave” carries them to a grander emotional scale. As Northup is thrust on to a boat with other frantic new captures, Hans Zimmer’s pulsating score compliments an intense montage of whispered exchanges between Northup and the other prisoners. The strength of the images shot by cinematographer Sean Bobbitt (“The Place Beyond the Pines”), first glimpsed in the prologue, provide an intricate clash of colors — from the sharp blues of the surrounding ocean to the murky shadows of the ship’s belly.

Alex Billington at First Showing:

There are scenes, master shots, where watching the camera linger on Ejiofor’s face will bring tears to your eyes. The incredible depth and the earnestness behind this man, and all that he has to endure, is enough to make a grown man cry. McQueen is a master of the lingering shot, focusing the camera intently on the faces, on raw scenes of slavery brutality, and letting the audiences sit (occasionally uncomfortably) soaking up the images on screen. It’s very brave filmmaking, the kind that pushes the audience to understand and accept what they’re seeing even if it’s despicable or just disgusting. This film is extraordinary in the way everyone involved, from the actors to producers to the crew, committed themselves to making something so powerful.


_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Mon Sep 02, 2013 4:58 pm

http://www.hitfix.com/in-contention/review-powerful-12-years-a-slave-wont-turn-away-from-the-brutality-of-slavery

Review: Powerful '12 Years A Slave' won't turn away from the brutality of slavery

Chiwetel Ejiofor is exceptional in this true story

By Gregory Ellwood Saturday, Aug 31, 2013 3:02 AM
HitFix
A-

TELLURIDE, Colo. - After its premiere screening at the 2013 Telluride Film Festival Friday evening, it goes without saying that no narrative film or TV program has ever depicted the sheer brutality and horror that was American slavery as Steve McQueen's "12 Years A Slave" does. Based on the true story of Solomon Northup, a free black man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery in 1841, "12 Years" is a powerful drama driven by McQueen's bold direction and the finest performance of Chiwetel Ejiofor's career.

The film begins about halfway through Northup's ordeal as he finds himself cutting sugarcane and sharing a floor to sleep on with countless other slaves. It then quickly jumps back to his idyllic life in Saratoga, New York where he appears to have made a living as a violin player. While his wife and two children head out of town for a few weeks (Quvenzhané Wallis briefly appears as his daughter), Northup (Ejiofor) makes the mistake of partnering with two men who present themselves as circus promoters (Taran Killam, Scoot McNairy) for a few performances culminating in Washington, D.C. At that time the nation's capital was not a safe area for free men of color because it bordered the slave states of Virginia and Maryland. After a night of celebrating with his supposed business partners, Northup wakes up to find himself in a slave pen shackled in chains. The horror of this situation is immediate to both Northup and the audience. His predicament becomes even more painful to watch after he is sold to a Louisiana plantation owner and freedom is now thousands of miles away.

Northup's story and the brutality he witnesses during his time as a slave would be tough viewing for anyone, but that's McQueen's greatest strength and what truly sets "12 Years" apart. McQueen has no fear in depicting the true savagery thrust upon American slaves by their owners. He won't flinch in holding on the image, even if it's graphically disturbing. Slavery was an inhumane evil that McQueen refuses to turn away from. The fact McQueen makes this creative decision early on allows one heartbreaking whipping scene near the end of the movie to effectively become the picture's climax. The scene is filmed completely in one shot allowing the tension to build as you realize there will be no escape for the victim or the viewer. It's obviously tough to watch, but also brilliantly realized. As producer and supporting cast member Brad Pitt noted in the film's post-screening Q&A, the film is so intense it makes you "want to take a group walk around the block." And, yes, that's a good thing.
Related Videos

100
12 Years a Slave - Domestic Trailer #1

In the pre-Civil War United States, Solomon Northup, a free black man from up...

For all McQueen's considerable skills as a filmmaker, "12 Years" would not succeed without Ejiofor's incredible turn. In this day in age it may be hard to believe why a free man wouldn't run for his life or fight to his last breath in Northup's circumstances. Ejiofor makes history palatable as he captures Northup's desire to survive as well as his despair as the weight of his plight increases over time.

Michael Fassbender and newcomer Lupita Nyong'o are the picture's two other standout turns. Fassbender is essentially the embodiment of evil as Northup's last slave owner, Edwin Epps. McQueen's frequent muse ("Hunger," "Shame") is relentless in depicting the inhumanity in Epps, but expertly manages to avoid making Epps one note. Instead of pretending there is some good in Epps, Fassbender and McQueen provide him a range of combustible madness.

Epps primary victim is Patsey, a young slave girl played by Nyong'o. As Patsey suffers from Epps' affections, insecurities and jealousy, Nyong'o eloquently convinces us why her character sees death as her only viable escape. It's the film's breakthrough performance and may find Nyong'o making her way to the Dolby Theater next March.

McQueen is also blessed by fantastic small performances by a number of great actors including Paul Dano as an insecure overseer on Northup's first plantation, Benedict Cumberbatch as Northup's sympathetic (to a degree) first owner, Paul Giamatti as a cold-minded slave auctioneer, Alfre Woodward as a kept plantation owner's wife and Pitt as Northup's eventual salvation. Sarah Paulson deserves special recognition for superbly avoiding cliches in the familiar role of a jealous plantation owner's wife.

"12 Years" also features gorgeous cinematography by another longtime McQueen collaborator, Sean Bobbitt, and one of Hans Zimmer's more moving scores in some time.

One minor criticism of the film is that it shockingly fails to convey the passage of time during Northrup's forced slavery. This isn't to suggest McQueen needed title cards dictating individual years, but when your film is titled "12 Years A Slave" it might make a bit of sense to communicate the weight of the period to your audience.

Most importantly, however, long after its initial run in theaters and years after it earns whatever awards come its way, "12 Years,"" like "Lincoln," "The Hurt Locker" or "Milk," will have an enduring legacy as an educational tool for new generations. And, frankly, that might be the most satisfying reward someone like McQueen or Ejiofor could ask for.

"12 Years A Slave" will continue to screen at the Telluride Film Festival and have it's official world premiere at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. It opens in limited release on Oct. 18.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Mon Sep 02, 2013 5:07 pm

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/08/31/12-years-a-slave-starring-chiwetel-ejiofor-and-michael-fassbender-is-mesmerizing.html


‘12 Years a Slave,’ Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor and Michael Fassbender, Is Mesmerizing
by Marlow Stern Aug 31, 2013 4:46 PM EDT
Steve McQueen’s drama ‘12 Years a Slave,’ which tells the real-life tale of Solomon Northup, a free man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery in 1841, premiered to raves at the Telluride Film Festival. Marlow Stern reports on the Oscar-bait film.
Jaap Buitendijk/Fox Searchlight Pictures (Francois Duhamel/Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Following its debut screening at the 40th annual Telluride Film Festival, the drama 12 Years a Slave, helmed by acclaimed visual artist-turned-filmmaker Steve McQueen (Hunger, Shame), left the audience in stunned silence. Even the stars of the film were shell-shocked.

“I think it might be more productive if we all just had a group walk around the block or something,” said Brad Pitt, who produced and has a bit part in the film, during a post-screening Q&A.

“It's the first time I’ve seen the film, and honestly, I’m a little taken aback,” added co-star Michael Fassbender.

McQueen’s movie is, far and away, the most uncompromising depiction of slavery ever put to film. Cracking whips rip flesh off backs with rapacious license. Women are raped and mutilated. Men, women, and children are stripped naked and inspected like chattel, and later, lynched with impunity. But this is as it were, and the violence in the film is never fetishized, but rather serves as a stark reminder of what so many black men, women, and children endured in this country’s not-so-distant past.

12 Years a Slave is based on the 1853 biography of Solomon Northrup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free man and ace fiddler living with his wife and two children in Saratoga, N.Y. One day, two affable gentlemen convince him to accept a fiddling gig with a traveling circus in Washington D.C., for which he’ll be compensated handsomely. One night, the duo gets Solomon drunk, and when he awakes, he’s bound in chains.

“You’re just a runaway nigger from Georgia… Are you a slave?” screams his captor. When Solomon pleads his innocence, he’s paddled and whipped until his shirt is in bloody tatters.

Before long, Solomon finds himself on a ship headed for New Orleans. A fellow slave onboard (Chris Chalk) warns him to play dumb if he wants to survive.

“Don’t tell no one who you really are, and don’t tell no one you can read and write, unless you want to be a dead nigger,” he says.

When the ship docks, the “property” is scooped up by a sleazy slave merchant (Paul Giamatti), and sold at auction. Solomon is purchased for $1,000 by William Ford (Benedict Cumberbatch), a Baptist preacher and plantation owner who takes a liking to him, and treats him with respect (given the circumstances). Before long, however, Solomon runs afoul of his redneck sub-master (Paul Dano) and, after whipping him in a fit of rage, knows his days at Ford’s plantation are numbered. He’s sold to Edwin Epps (Michael Fassbender), an evil alcoholic slave master who’s convinced he’s doing god’s will by beating and maiming his “property.”

As Edwin, Fassbender is utterly terrifying in his unpredictability. You never know if he’ll stab you in the chest, or unleash his teethy smile. Unlike Leonardo DiCaprio’s P.T. Barnum-esque mandingo monster in Django Unchained, Edwin is not a caricature, which makes him all the more menacing. His sadistic obsession with his prized cotton-picker, a teen slave who goes by “Patsey,” played by newcomer Lupita Nyong’o (a revelation), is especially disturbing. The more he yearns for her, the worse he treats her, refusing to even let her wash herself. We haven’t seen a character this revoltingly racist since Ralph Fiennes’ Amon Goeth in Schindler’s List. And, Edwin’s wife Mary (Sarah Paulson), isn’t much better. She’s manipulative monster in the Lady Macbeth mold who forces Edwin to take out her own jealousies and insecurities onto the slaves—especially poor Patsey.

There are shades of The Pianist here, as McQueen tells the real-life story of a talented musician who is suddenly thrust into chaos, and must endure unspeakable hardships. And, like Adrien Brody before him, Chiwetel Ejiofor delivers an astonishing performance full of gravitas. The occasional outburst aside, the beauty in Ejiofor’s turn is in the quieter moments, where McQueen lets the camera linger on Solomon’s face so that we all bear witness to the full breadth of his torture, and how his soul has been all but vanquished.

And, while there are many startlingly violent scenes, they are juxtaposed with beauteous ones. McQueen and his cinematographer Sean Bobbitt capture the beauty amid the ugliness—lush Cypress trees towering over sullied waters, boilworms slithering over cotton plants, and the embers of a fire being devoured by the darkness. It’s all hauntingly poetic.

The only minor—and they are minor—downsides come courtesy of Hans Zimmer’s booming score, which sounds like a mash-up of that blaring noise from Inception and Shame’s strident synths, as well as a cameo by Brad Pitt as a Canadian carpenter who believes that, “in the eyes of god, what is the difference” between blacks and whites.

But this is a triumph of a film, and one that you’ll be hearing plenty more of during awards season.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Wed Sep 04, 2013 4:23 pm

http://blogs.indiewire.com/theplaylist/telluride-review-steve-mcqueens-12-years-a-slave-starring-chiwetel-ejiofor-michael-fassbender-more-20130831

Telluride Review: Steve McQueen's '12 Years A Slave' Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender & More
Reviews
by Chris Willman
August 31, 2013 10:55 AM

Steve McQueen’s “12 Years a Slave” instantly establishes itself as the most unflinching of all slave dramas, which is to say, there is plenty of flinching, not to mention cowering and recoiling and passing out, thanks to beatings and whippings that arrive at roughly 10-to-15-minute intervals throughout a 133-minute running time. “Amistad,” meet the Marquis de Sade, in the form of slavemaster Michael Fassbender, who puts his victims through more tortures than Mel Gibson ever could have imagined for Jesus.

This revolving door of graphically rendered brutalities might feel like its own punishment if not for an array of astonishing performances that’s practically a one-stop Oscar-nomination shopping spree. At the film’s world premiere in Telluride Friday night, it quickly became apparent that leading man Chiwetel Ejiofor had moved to the head of the line of best actor candidates, with Fassbender and newcomer Lupita Nyong'o sure to contend in the supporting categories. Even those of us who aren’t Oscar bloggers should break out whatever mnemonic devices we need to immediately commit Ejiofor’s and Nyong'o’s names to the tips of our tongues.

'12 Years' has a sex scene within its first five minutes, which will have some viewers sniggering that they wouldn’t expect anything less from the director of “Shame.” But there are no pleasures to follow for any of the characters after that brief undercover coupling in a crowded slave’s quarters. After that flash-forward, we see Solomon Northup (Ejiofor) and his family in happier times, as free and even privileged blacks in the north, before he’s kidnapped and transported to the South for a quick and easy sale. He pleads his case to captors along the way, who respond by pounding Northup each time he insists his name isn’t really Platt. It’s a classic wrong-man/mistaken-identity setup, although no noir ever required this many scarring prosthetics.

A parade of character actors famous for playing sleazeballs get to mistreat Solomon, starting with Paul Giamatti, and including Paul Dano as an imbecile sub-“master” who can’t stand the thought that there might be an educated slave in the midst. Transfers in ownership ensure that Solomon’s lot goes from bad to worse to worst, as he finally ends up in the hands of notorious “slave-breaker” Edwin Epps (Fassbender). Epps isn’t even the most villainous of the many detestable white people in the movie: that would be his jealous and bloodthirsty wife, played by Sarah Paulson, who makes Lady MacBeth look like Olive Oyl.

It may seem foolish to complain that a movie about slavery makes the white characters look bad, but John Ridley’s script certainly sees things in terms of black and white in every way, which means that all the Southern white characters are caught up in their own awards race for most contemptible. Paulson’s one-note beeyotch character doesn’t do the actress any favors, but Fassbender, in what could have been a mustache-twirling part, is utterly transfixing as the kind of guy who really does have a deeply emotional investment in manic racial sadism.

“Long-suffering” isn’t easy to play with layers, either, but Nyong'o—as Epp’s slave mistress, who actually manages to get privileges taken away, not added, for her sexual services—is a heartbreaker in every way. She’d steal the movie if it weren’t Ejiofor’s performance, but few actors could pull off the combination of dignity and torment he manages here. McQueen gives the actor a lot of dialogue-free long takes, including one close-up toward the end that’s content to study his face for what seems like at least a minute as Solomon considers the possibility that his last and best chance for freedom has ended in another betrayal.

Among supporting players, Alfre Woodward has one great scene as a gossipy, highly intelligent, exalted lady among slaves, and she makes you wish the movie had a few more character sketches like hers among the lashings. Executive producer Brad Pitt shows up in the last 20 minutes, looking vaguely Amish, and given that there hasn’t been a likeable white character since the opening minutes of the movie, it feels incongruous to see him suddenly come on screen and immediately give a speech about God-given racial parity. But by this time, we’re ready for the light at the end of the tunnel, even if his dialogue does seem right out of “Lincoln.”

Although Ridley sometimes writes his villains’ lines a little more broadly and obviously than needed, the overall mixture of period flavor with contemporary accessibility in the verbiage couldn’t be any better balanced. As for McQueen’s work, advance chatter had some wondering whether he had what it took to make a mainstream entertainment his third time around, but there won’t be much questioning of that after doubters see “12 Years a Slave.” It has the strokes you’d expect out of a studio picture but also some moments few other directors would have attempted, like an agonizingly beautiful sequence in which Solomon literally tip-toes his way through a near-hanging that goes on for several silent minutes. If McQueen could forge a career working arthouse moments into multiplex movies, that’d be a case of mistaken identity we’d be happy to live with. [A-]

Browse through all our coverage of the 2013 Telluride Film Festival to date by clicking here.

"12 Years A Slave" is receiving rave reviews out of Telluride. Click on page 2 to read more of the buzz, which of course has the word "Oscar" being thrown around quite a bit.



Variety: "The first thing fans of McQueen’s 'Hunger' and 'Shame' will notice here is the degree to which the helmer’s austere formal technique has evolved — to the extent that one would almost swear he’d snuck off and made three or four films in the interim. Composition, sound design and story all cut together beautifully, and yet, there’s no question that '12 Years a Slave' remains an art film, especially as the provocative director forces audiences to confront concepts and scenes that could conceivably transform their worldview."

HitFix: " '12 Years' is a powerful drama driven by McQueen's bold direction and the finest performance of Chiwetel Ejiofor's career."

FirstShowing: "Phenomenal. A profound cinematic achievement on every level. Filmmaking at its finest. Chiwetel for Oscar. It's his."

Hollywood Elsewhere: "Sad & ghastly as the story is, '12 Years A Slave' is a humanist masterpiece & a slamdunk Best Picture contender right out of the gate."

Washington Post: "12 YEARS A SLAVE = Masterful rendering of intolerable cruelty. Standing O for McQ, Ejiofor, Pitt, Fass & stunning Lupita Nyong'o."

Awards Daily: "Another powerful collaboration for McQueen and Fassbender. They make magic together."

The Guardian: "12 YEARS A SLAVE (A-) is neo-brutalist, compassionate stunner, more Haneke than Hollywood, stand-outs from Fassbender, Ejiofor, and Nyong'o"

Indiewire: "More than a powerful elegy, '12 Years a Slave' is a mesmerizing triumph of art and polemics: McQueen turns a topic rendered distant by history into an experience that, short of living through the terrible era it depicts, makes you feel as if you've been there."

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Wed Sep 04, 2013 5:23 pm

http://www.hitfix.com/in-contention/off-the-carpet-telluride-launches-the-season-from-gravity-to-12-years-a-slave

Off the Carpet: Telluride launches the season from 'Gravity' to '12 Years a Slave'

Will films that hit be able to keep the high going through the circuit?

By Kristopher Tapley Monday, Sep 2, 2013 12:27 PM

"Gravity," "12 Years a Slave" and "Labor Day" hope to keep the fire going through the fall.
Credit: Warner Bros./Fox Searchlight/Paramount

The Telluride Film Festival wraps up today and with that, the upcoming awards season has finally taken a little shape. We have a long way to go, of course, and no one should be calling the race from this far out, but we certainly know a few things.

Despite the weird and borderline envious sniping on Twitter from non-Telluride journos eager to have their own say on how the narrative was being shaped, "12 Years a Slave" is a knock-out contender full stop. Chiwetel Ejiofor has already been the recipient of some extreme "one-to-beat" coverage, and that may be a reach (we don't know how the other performances in a hugely contentious Best Actor race will be received), but he's outstanding in an emotional piece of work that elicits outright sobbing.

And it's certainly not cheaply achieved emotion, either. Steve McQueen is further refining his filmmaking acumen, and even if I remain partial to the abstractions of "Hunger" and "Shame," as more conventional work goes, "12 Years" is masterful stuff. Fox Searchlight was smart to bring the film here ahead of its Toronto premiere in order to make a nice splash before diving into that upcoming glut, and it's really the only all-cylinders film they have to work with this season. They know what they're doing and the film does plenty of its own work, so expect Academy members to take it seriously. And with an October release, it will have a long time to sit and marinate with voters, much like "Argo" last year.

The other big sneak preview of the festival was Denis Villeneuve's "Prisoners," which is an unexpectedly patient and measured studio thriller. Villeneuve has chops, there's no question, but despite some breathy exclamations elsewhere, I remain a bit reserved on its awards prospects. At the end of the day, it doesn't quite match the filmmaking prowess to which it has been compared (David Fincher's "Zodiac," for instance, which, by the way, wasn't an Oscar movie). I think ultimately we'll see this was "just" Villeneuve's impressive leap onto the Hollywood stage, and at the end of the day, there's no shame in that. However, critics in love with the film could end up pushing the issue and Warner Bros. thinks its a film to nurture through the circuit. Hugh Jackman will have trouble cracking the tight Best Actor field but Jake Gyllenhaal isn't a huge stretch for supporting. Others think Melissa Leo is someone to consider but in my humble opinion she represents the weakest element of the film.

Jason Reitman has big shoes to fill on the awards circuit: his own. And the director's latest, "Labor Day," was the biggest official world premiere on the schedule. The film landed in somewhat more mixed waters than I was expecting, though women are really responding to it. If cynical takes on the film don't hurt the film's chances, it could find room to navigate the Best Actress (Kate Winslet) and Best Adapted Screenplay races, and perhaps Josh Brolin could hit in supporting. But, like a number of films actually, it could be a victim of a crowded, quality year. Paramount also has another pair of films that are hardly Best Picture slam dunks, so we'll have to watch the reaction further as the film heads to Toronto next week.
Related

Lostgravity_article_story_main_article_story_main
Telluride: 'All is Lost' and 'Gravity' play with similar themes at sea and in space

Survive this life-affirming double feature

12years_article_story_main_article_story_main
Telluride: On the beauty and barbarity of sure-fire Oscar contender '12 Years a Slave'

Steve McQueen's and his cast reflect on an intense but rewarding experience

Labor_article_story_main_article_story_main
Telluride: 'Labor Day' with Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin marks a fresh and mature departure for Jason Reitman

None of the director's trademarks are present in this old-fashioned narrative

Nebraska_article_story_main_article_story_main
Telluride: Bruce Dern shines as, yes, a leading man in Alexander Payne's 'Nebraska'

A longtime character actors gets a much-deserved moment in the spotlight

The other big official drop (no pun intended) was "Gravity," which saw its North American debut in Telluride. It was the festival's hottest ticket, and it delivered. Alfonso Cuarón's vision is impeccably realized and the emotion lands just right by film's end. Like "Avatar" and "Life of Pi," it will be the technical marvel of the season. As such, I would expect to see nominations across the board, particularly since it's a better play on the circuit than WB's "Prisoners" and, certainly, all the other hopefuls on the studio's slate. Picture, Director, Actress, Screenplay, Cinematography, Editing, Score, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Visual Effects -- with all the shots on goal this film has throughout the categories, 10 nominations are certainly reachable. Look for more excitement out of Toronto next week.

Films that first landed at Cannes and made the transition to North America three months later included J.C. Chandor's "All is Lost," the Coen brothers' "Inside Llewyn Davis," Alexander Payne's "Nebraska" and Asghar Farhadi's "The Past." And all found fertile ground to keep their awards hopes blooming.

Payne's film, in particular, found new life after a different cut screened in Telluride than what audiences in Cannes saw. It's a delicate piece of work that will absolutely resonate with Academy members and really, a Best Picture nomination isn't out of the question. At the moment the best shots seem to be for Best Actor (Bruce Dern), Best Supporting Actress (June Squibb) and Best Original Screenplay.

Speaking of Dern, there's a very strange desire to torpedo his chances by a media (particularly The Hollywood Reporter, which has gone to the well three times on this issue) obsessed with his category placement. Of course, it doesn't help that he has been as forward about it as he's been when asked the question, but he's old school and will tell you how it is. That said, there's nothing particularly embarrassing or even untrue about his actual quotes on the matter, and the fact is, the question itself is kind of pointless. But kudos on landing more traffic with sexy headlines.

I happen to think this is a lead performance so it's easier for me to talk in these terms, but those arguing for supporting act as if it's cut and dry. It's not. "The film is Will Forte's story" is facile, poorly considered reasoning, in my opinion, and I'm already on the record about the cynical logic of going supporting merely to chase a win. In any case, it doesn't matter because a) voters will make that call themselves and b) the performance will register and, in all likelihood, be nominated in lead. Paramount would be smart, though, to put a pin in this for now before it becomes the story of the movie.

In the case of Chandor's film, Robert Redford's Telluride tribute gives him another boost into the season. Here is a nuanced, rich performance with a narrative already humming: that the actor wanted to see what he was capable of at 77. Interestingly, he and Dern, if both are nominated, could end up pulling votes from one another while someone like Ejiofor or Matthew McConaughey slips in for the win. We'll save that kind of analysis for when it actually matters, though. But "All is Lost" also deserves notice in a number of other areas, not least of them the sound categories where a last minute change to the post-production crew yielded brilliant results at Skywalker Sound.

And finally, the Coens' "Inside Llewyn Davis." As noted, I'm still turning this one over in my head. But Oscar Isaac's performance is so incredible it pains me to realize it will probably fall out of contention in a Best Actor race full of heavy-hitters. I do hope I'm wrong and I wish CBS Films all the luck in the world as they are very excited about pushing this film through the circuit. The film also deserves plenty of below-the-line recognition, from its lush photography to its crisp sound mix. And if anything, the whole enterprise argues in favor of bringing back official Academy recognition for adapted soundtracks; T Bone Burnett is the hero of this film. CBS will continue to play the long game, wisely skipping Toronto and heading for New York at the end of the month. Drips and drabs will keep it bobbing on the circuit through to its early December release.

Beyond that, the documentary race could be spiked by Penn and Teller's "Tim's Vermeer," though Errol Morris' "The Unknown Known" faced a bit of a muted reaction at Telluride, largely because no one wants to sit through Donald Rumsfeld's lies and platitudes for so long; there aren't epiphanies to be found here like there were in "The Fog of War." Maybe more distance would have yielded that, but then, who knows how much longer Rumsfeld will even be with us? Finally, "Salinger" screens Monday at the fest ahead of its release next week. Maybe that will figure into the race as well. (And thankfully everyone is okay after a scary crash landing with the film's crew and Weinstein publicists at the Telluride airport.)

Speaking of The Weinstein Company, Harvey picked up John Curran's "Tracks," but expect that to release next year and be part of his next wave of countless films thrown at the wall to see what will stick. "The Invisible Woman" from Ralph Fiennes didn't quite launch him onto the Best Actor radar as Sony Classics might have hoped, while the foreign film race, from "Bethlehem" to "Gloria" to "The Past," kept the coals stoked. Oh, and "The Wind Rises," which showed up as a last minute TBA, kept chugging after a warm Venice reception. Hayao Miyazaki's swan song is sure to place in a thinner animated film than we've seen in a while

Beyond that, there isn't much left to say about how Telluride shaped the race this year, and that's frankly plenty. A year ago the story coming out of Colorado was "Argo" and Warner Bros. kept that conversation alive throughout the circuit. That's not an easy thing to accomplish. Can "Gravity" keep its high going? Can "12 Years a Slave?" Time will tell. But from here, the rest of the fall festival circuit will continue to have its say.

The Contenders section has been updated in full but Telluride is still going. Check back for a festival wrap later today.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Wed Sep 04, 2013 5:24 pm

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/telluride-big-premieres-outshine-retrospectives-619384

Telluride: Big Premieres Outshine Retrospectives as Festival Throws Itself a Great 40th
3:48 PM PDT 9/2/2013 by Todd McCarthy

Gravity Still La Biennale di Venezia - H 2013
"Gravity"
Steve McQueen’s "12 Years a Slave," Alfonso Cuaron’s "Gravity" and a slew of Cannes hits punctuate the five-day Colorado event, bolstered by the opening of a new theater.

The Telluride Film Festival celebrated its 40th birthday in grand style over an extended five-day Labor Day weekend with a banner collection of generally outstanding new films, stellar tributes and a big new theater that considerably eased the perennial problem of guests not getting in to see everything they desired.

As has increasingly been the case over the last several years, big new fall titles caused the greatest anticipation and, in most cases, excitement when they were unveiled in the rarefied, 8,750-foot altitude town, which now has eight first-class venues running films all day and often until 1 a.m.

Of the hitherto unseen titles from name directors from whom much was expected, all were extremely well received, most of all Steve McQueen’s gripping biographical drama 12 Years a Slave, Alfonso Cuaron’s eye- and mind-blowing Gravity and Denis Villeneuve’s gritty Prisoners. Jason Reitman’s moving Labor Day kicked things off in very nice fashion, while Ralph Fiennes’ romantic drama about Charles Dickens, The Invisible Woman, provided a happy surprise; Gia Coppola’s teen study Palo Alto revealed a distinctive hand; John Curran’s Australian trek epic Tracks and David Mackenzie’s violent prison drama Starred Up generally satisfied; Shane Salerno’s long-awaited documentary Salinger made it (but just barely, given the crash landing at Telluride Airport of the plane carrying the elements and support staff) for a final-day surprise; and Hayao Miyazaki’s latest, The Wind Rises, also arrived at the end -- along with the unwelcome news that the great Japanese animator is retiring.

An unknown quantity that quickly generated great enthusiasm was the camera optics art documentary Tim’s Vermeer from Teller (as in Penn & Teller), as did the account of weird doings in one of the world’s most far-flung outposts, Dan Geller and Dayna Goldfine’s The Galapagos Affair: Satan Came to Eden.

Not living up to expectations for most viewers was Jonathan Glazer’s Woman-Who-Fell-to-Earth-style mystery piece Under the Skin, while Errol Morris’ elaborate documentary about Donald Rumsfeld, The Unknown Known, was widely considered to be not on a par with his similar The Fog of War, about Robert McNamara.

Yuval Adler’s Israeli thriller Bethlehem received generally positive marks, while Pawel Pawlikowski’s Polish entry Ida was one for the high-art types but was widely praised for its black-and-white cinematography.

All the films picked up out of festivals in Cannes, Berlin or elsewhere hit the bullseye in their North American debuts. The Canners Palme d’Or winner, Abdellatif Kechiche’s Blue Is the Warmest Color, was a huge success, with its lead actresses Adele Exarchopoulos and Lea Seydoux around all weekend and avidly pursued by press and fans who wanted to express their feelings about the explicit love story.

If anything, Alexander Payne’s Nebraska went over even better here than it did in Cannes, with quite a few visitors professing that it was the best film they saw. Payne said he’s trimmed the film by one minute since May -- just tiny slices here and there, but he’s convinced they make a difference.

Two other big Cannes hits, J.C Chandor’s All Is Lost and Joel and Ethan Coen's Inside Llewyn Davis, repeated their success in the mountains. On top of that, the first film’s star, Robert Redford, and the Coen brothers, in tandem with their ace musical cohort T Bone Burnett, received tributes over the weekend, as did Iranian Mohammad Rasoulof, whose Manuscripts Don’t Burn was also shown.

Also widely appreciated in their U.S. bows were Asghar Farhadi’s The Past, Ritesh Batra’s The Lunchbox, Sebastian Lelio’s Gloria, Rithy Panh’s The Missing Picture and Agnieszka Holland’s three-part European HBO drama about Czechoslovakia in 1968-69, Burning Bush.

More entries included Philppe Claudel’s Before the Winter Chill, Mitra Farahani’s Fifi Howls From Happiness, Stefano Sardo’s documentary Slow Food Story, Nicolas Philibert’s La Maison de la Radio and two more installments in Werner Herzog’s ongoing Death Row series.

Given all the excitement swirling around these new films, the revival and retrospective showings of old films, always a Telluride staple, seemed to take something of a backseat this year. The vintage titles shown included Aguirre, the Wrath of God (aptly offered as the inaugural title in the spacious new Werner Herzog Theater), Chris Marker’s Le Joli Mai, Victor Sjostrom’s He Who Gets Slapped, Vsevolod Pudovkin’s A Simple Case, Sasha Guitry’s La Poison and the David O. Selznick/William Dieterle Portrait of Jennie.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Sat Sep 07, 2013 1:44 pm

http://www.buzzfeed.com/adambvary/12-years-a-slave-is-the-must-see-movie-of-the-year-and-shoul

“12 Years A Slave” Is The Must-See Movie Of The Year, And Should Win All The Oscars

Director Steve McQueen, star Chiwetel Ejiofor, and screenwriter John Ridley deliver a film for the ages. posted on September 7, 2013 at 1:05am EDT
Adam B. Vary

Michael Fassbender, Lupita, Nyong’o, and Chiwetel Ejiofor in 12 Years a Slave Fox Searchlight

TORONTO — There is a scene in 12 Years a Slave that will haunt me for the rest of my life.

I don’t think I should say anything more about that particular scene, but I will say that 12 Years a Slave — which screened Friday night at the Toronto International Film Festival after its world premiere last week at the Telluride Film Festival — is nothing less than the most emotionally powerful film I have seen in a decade, at least. I was a sobbing wreck during and after the film, in only the way a work of great art can affect you to your marrow. I walked out of the theater with the firm conviction that everyone needs to see it, because it is one of the only American films to deal head-on with slavery; because it is a great work of cinema and storytelling; and because we are all human beings who feel feelings.

Am I overselling it? Is it over-the-top to say I suspect that director Steve McQueen, star Chiwetel Ejiofor, screenwriter John Ridley, and the movie itself are destined for Oscars, and with due respect to the many fabulous movies that have and will come out this year, no other film can compete? No. It is not. It is that good, and that great, and I really do not mind saying it.

OK, here is a little more about the movie: Ejiofor plays Solomon Northup, a free black man living in New York who, in 1842, was lured to Washington D.C., and from there kidnapped and sold into slavery in Louisiana. It’s based on a true story — you can read about it here — and if you are paying attention to the title, you already have a sense of how the movie ends. But that does not diminish the film’s hold and power at all.

McQueen has marshaled a superlative cast, including Benedict Cumberbatch as Northup’s first owner; Paul Giamatti as the slaver who sells him; Alfre Woodard as the well-off mistress of a philandering plantation owner; and Brad Pitt (also one of seven credited producers) as a Canadian abolitionist. But the performances people will want to talk about after the film belong to Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender as Northup’s main, cruel owner Edwin Epps, and newcomer Lupita Nyong’o as Patsey, the slave who receives the lion’s share of Epps’ affections, and cruelty.

This is just a first draft reaction, and there is so much more to discuss with this film, including Hans Zimmer’s affecting score and Sean Bobbitt’s stunning cinematography, its subtle demolition of long-held tropes about American slavery, and an ending that, were this historical fiction, could feel a bit too convenient. But this is a movie that will lash itself to your memory, and stay there, permanently. There will be plenty of time to talk about it.


_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Sat Sep 07, 2013 3:54 pm

http://insidemovies.ew.com/2013/09/07/toronto-12-years-a-slave-is-a-landmark/


Toronto 2013: '12 Years a Slave' is a landmark of cruelty and transcendence
By Owen Gleiberman on Sep 7, 2013 at 11:00AM

Last year, watching Quentin Tarantino’s pop slave drama Django Unchained, the cruelty on-screen could be hideous and shocking, but one thing it never was, at least to me, was terrifying. Even when the white-on-black violence left you drop-jawed, it was still part of a heightened Tarantino landscape of thrills and sick spectacle and kicky dark danger and revenge. But in Steve McQueen’s agonizingly magnificent 12 Years a Slave, which premiered last night in Toronto, a sense of terror is alive in almost every scene. To describe even one moment of this movie as a “kick” would be obscene. It evokes the lives of African-American slaves as the nightmare it was, with violence spun into a daily fabric of brutality, one that’s neither heightened nor exaggerated, just scarily real. Forget the earnest and epochal (but, in hindsight, not really raw enough) TV mini-series Roots, forget the baroque exploitation of Mandingo, and — despite the overstated accolades it received — forget Django. As a drama of the slave experience, 12 Years a Slave renders them all irrelevant. It is a new movie landmark of cruelty and transcendence.

The movie, which is based upon a true story, starts in 1841 and is about a free black man in Saratoga, NY, a musician named Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), who walks around town in a natty gray suit and matching bowler hat, secure in his talent and in the courtly modesty of his life as a husband and father. He has two children, a boy and a girl, and he loves them tenderly. He has everything that a man — not a 19th-century black man, but any man — could want. But then, when his family is out of town, he takes up an offer to go on a trip to Washington, D.C., with a couple of traveling entertainers. They say that they’ll pay him generously, and when the trip is winding down, and they’re all having dinner at a ritzy restaurant, drinking wine, and the two men give him even more money than he was promised, we get a queasy feeling that this is all too good to be true. And it is. Solomon isn’t being hired for his talents. He’s being trafficked.

A moment later, he wakes up in a cold stark prison cell, with a spider web of chains shackling his arms and legs. His wine was drugged, he has been stripped of his identity and kidnapped, and he is about to be placed on a riverboat and sent down to Louisiana, where he’ll be sold into slavery. Gazing at his chains, as if he were in a bad dream that he simply had to wake up from, the great actor Chiwetel Ejiofor places us right inside his skin, and all of a sudden, we’re sharing the horror movie that Solomon’s life has become. Ejiofor has the noble sculpted features of an ancient Roman soldier, and he may also have the most eloquent eyes of any actor working. Now twinkly, now mournful, they are oversize orbs of pure expression, and in this movie, they need to be, because Solomon can’t often speak what he’s feeling. What we read in his intensely private, thousand-yard stare is the agony of a man robbed of freedom, but also the moment-to-moment recunciation of that despair. Whatever happens, he will persevere. He will survive. He will know misery, but he will not fall into the trap of madness. He will transcend.

McQueen has made two previous features: the sex-addict drama Shame (2011), which I found oddly and almost perilously unconvincing, and his first film, Hunger (2008), about the 1981 IRA prison hunger strike led by Bobby Sands — a movie that focused, with purity and power, on the agony of the body, and how that carried the devotion of the soul. 12 Years a Slave reaches back to the McQueen of Hunger, but it’s an even more lyrically wrenching and intense movie. There’s a scene early on in which Solomon gets sold, by a grossly lighthearted slave trader (Paul Giamatti), and McQueen puts the spotlight not on Solomon but on the woman next to him, who is being separated from her two children. Her plight echoes Solomon’s, and it lends an underlying sadistic aura to every cruelty that follows. Whatever physical pain will be involved, the agony is really spiritual: parents cut off from their children, each made dead to the other. That’s not just slavery, that’s soul murder.

A free man kidnapped and placed into slavery may, historically speaking, be a relative anomaly (though it happened often enough). McQueen’s horrifying inspiration is to realize that Solomon’s plight can lead us into the experience of slavery far more than that of a born-and-bred slave. American slavery was, among other things, the world’s most egregious example of Stockholm Syndrome: Those who lived their entire lives as slaves were coerced into a perverse identification with their “masters.” But in giving us the story of a proud free man who becomes a slave, and must therefore learn to answer insults with silence, to bear whippings, to pretend that he’s an inarticulate toady who can’t read or write, McQueen makes us feel the extreme unnaturalness of slavery. For, of course, it’s not just Solomon who is really a “free man.” So is every slave.

12 Years a Slave is based on a book, published in 1853, that Solomon Northup wrote about his ordeal, and McQueen, working from a superb script by John Ridley, has structured the movie as a diary-like series of anecdotes. There are characters we get to know, like the two slave owners Solomon is sold to — the first (Benedict Cumberbatch) relatively benign, the second (Michael Fassbender) a snarling, lusty, despotic son-of-a-bitch. There are motifs and developments, scenes of hope and fear and intensity. Yet there is no trumped-up movie-ish drama, no “arcs,” no filler to pad out the experience we’re watching. The crushing reality of Solomon’s day-to-day existence is the drama; that’s all the drama the movie needs. The organic artistry of McQueen’s approach hinges on what he does visually: He stages scenes without a lot of cuts, using his camera as a kind of peering, gliding invisible witness. He captures not just the barbarity of slavery but the degraded nature of the relationships we’re seeing, and he does it with a terrifying intimacy. Edwin Epps, the Fassbender character, is depicted as a mean and wily psychologist of racial obsession, and when he discovers that Solomon has tried to get a white laborer to send a letter up north for him, he takes the slave outside and holds his face close, saying he knows what’s up, and Solomon defuses the situation with an ingeniously crafty lie that he must sustain for several minutes, without a tremor, while staring his overseer right in his taunting, skeptical eye. This is gripping filmmaking, with nothing allowed to get in the way of the super-close-up interaction on screen.

Edwin develops an obsession with Patsey (Lupita Nyong’o), the teenage slave girl he regularly rapes, and their “relationship” becomes part of a debased triangle, since Edwin’s wife (Sarah Paulson) is all too aware of his obsession. The way this plays out is that Patsey, who picks more cotton each day than any of the other slaves (500 pounds of it), gets subjected to the torments of the damned, and the performance of Lupita Nyong’o is brilliant beyond words. She’s like Falconetti in Carl Dreyer’s The Passion of Joan of Arc, going to a place of private craziness and communion beyond pain, to the point that Patsey begs Solomon to take her down to the river and drown her. The most twisted moment in the movie comes when Solomon is forced to whip her himself, and McQueen plays a startling cinematic trick: He shows us the beating by focusing on the man holding the whip — a Hollywood cliché — and then, just as we’ve been lulled into that old familiar it’s-only-a-movie mode, the camera, without a cut, spins around to show us what the whipping is doing. The mortification of flesh hits us in our solar plexus.

12 Years a Slave lets us stare at the primal sin of America with open eyes, and at moments it is hard to watch, yet it’s a movie of such humanity and grace that at every moment, you feel you’re seeing something essential. It is Chiwetel Ejiofor’s extraordinary performance that holds the movie together, and that allows us to watch it without blinking. He plays Solomon with a powerful inner strength, yet he never soft-pedals the silent nightmare that is Solomon’s daily existence. The ultimate cruelty he’s subjected to isn’t the beatings or the humiliation. It is that he is ripped from his family, blockaded away from all that he is. Yet such is the force of Ejiofor’s acting that he made me think of Nina Simone’s sublime rendition of “Ain’t Got No/I Got Life,” the two songs from Hair that she transformed into an African-American gospel epiphany. Simone sang about how she, too, had known what it was to lose everything (“Ain’t got no clothes, no country, no friends, no nothing, ain’t got no God”), and because she had lost everything, she had only one thing left: She had life. 12 Years a Slave is a movie about a life that gets taken away, and that’s why it lets us touch what life is.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Sun Sep 08, 2013 7:34 pm

http://tutorstate.heyclick.net/12-years-a-slave/12-years-a-slave-toronto-film-festival-first-look-review/


12 Years a Slave: Toronto film festival – first look review
Posted on September 8, 2013 by

Suspend the betting, close the books, and notify the engraver: I've just seen what will surely be this year's Best Picture winner, and it's 12 Years a Slave. There's no question in my mind that this will be our ultimate awards season victor, and the

Steve McQueen's slave drama stars Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender and Benedict Cumberbatch.

Following its triumphant bow in Telluride, Steve McQueen's brutal drama about slavery is another sign that Toronto doesn't really get going until Friday night. Steve McQueen's “12 Years a Slave” came to Toronto on Friday

12 Years a Slave is the movie that left a whole theater speechless. And that's saying something. Festival-goers tend to gab easily about their likes or dislikes as they walk out of a film, but the crowd exiting Friday night's

Stark, visceral and unrelenting, 12 Years a Slave is not just a great film but a necessary one. The phrase "long-awaited" has been much used to describe this third feature from British director Steve McQueen, which sees Chiwetel Ejiofor alongside

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Sun Sep 08, 2013 7:34 pm

http://www.theguardian.com/film/2013/sep/07/twelve-years-a-slave-review-toronto


12 Years a Slave: Toronto film festival - first look review

Steve McQueen's much-hyped slavery drama is a brutal, excoriating and vital companion to Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained

12 YEARS A SLAVE
Chiwetel Ejiofor in 12 Years a Slave. Photograph: Allstar/NEW REGENCY PICTURES/Sportsphoto Ltd./Allstar

Stark, visceral and unrelenting, 12 Years a Slave is not just a great film but a necessary one. The phrase "long-awaited" has been much used to describe this third feature from British director Steve McQueen, which sees Chiwetel Ejiofor alongside Michael Fassbender in a star-studded cast. It's a common piece of cinematic hyperbole but it also describes the function this picture serves in confronting a practice that endured in the United States of America for nearly 250 years.

12 Years a Slave
Production year: 2013
Country: USA
Directors: Steve McQueen
Cast: Benedict Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Paul Dano
More on this film

Based on a first-hand account, Ejiofor plays Solomon Northup, a violin player who lives a happy and relatively affluent life in Saratoga Springs, near New York City. It is 1841 and Northup is a free man apparently accepted as an equal by his white peers. When his wife takes a trip out of town, however, Northup is tempted into earning extra money by performing for a travelling circus. He heads to Washington with new companions only to be drugged, kidnapped and bound in chains just a stone's throw from the Capitol building.

From there Northup is severed completely from his old life. His name is changed to Platt and this urbane family man is told both to forget his identity and his skills. "Tell no one who you are and tell no one you can read or write," warns a fellow captive, "unless you want to be a dead nigger". He is shipped to Louisiana like so much chattel; one shot shows the tarpaulin pulled off a cart in which the slaves are carried like the lid being pulled from a sardine tin.

The rest of the film concerns itself with Platt's passage through the hands of several owners, each barbaric in their own way to someone they cannot stop to consider as being human. Paul Giamatti's trader Theophilus Freeman proves the strengths and reflexes of his slaves by jauntily beating them with cudgels. Benedict Cumberbatch's Master Ford considers himself a man of conscience but presides over plantation in which brutality reigns untrammeled.

Then, finally, there is Fassbender's Master Epps. He is renowned as a "nigger breaker", a sadist who keeps order through constant application of the lash. He wakes his slaves in the middle of the night and forces them to dance amid casual, liberal beatings. He is in constant fear of conspiracy and believes the ill will of his slaves to have caused God to curse his cotton crop. At the same time he has taken his most productive worker, Patsy (Lupita Nyong'o), to be a sex object.

Fassbender is brilliant in the part. Violence is always only a hair's breadth away, but his belief in his authority results in an eccentricity at times so delicate as to be even more terrifying than the temper. With his arm draped amicably over his shoulder he calmly threatens Platt with death. He goes straight from strangling a woman to softly cuddling terrified friend. Hand in hand with a child, he prances around in a smock.

Comparisons here can be made with another loquacious slaver, Leonardo Di Caprio's Calvin Candie from Django Unchained. Candie was a villain who conducted depraved acts without blinking. But, as with many of Tarantino's bad guys, he also had a rat-like cunning and a dry wit that lent him a kind of glamour. There is no such veneer on Fassbender's Master Epps however - and this is surely an important distinction.

As with the Tarantino movie there is frequent bloody violence and the word "nigger" is used as a matter of course. Not once does any of it provoke a thrill however. At first it provokes horror and disgust but ultimately there's an exasperation, a feeling that you cannot watch any more. Northup and his peers however have long since grown a callus where those sensitivities once lay. One of the most shocking things for the viewer might be how the slaves at various plantations carry calmly about their work as men and women are lynched and beaten around them.

12 Years a Slave is a scarifying, unblinking portrayal of life as it was for tens of thousands of people less than 200 years ago. It pulls no punches. But neither does it lecture. McQueen chooses to let all the actions and inactions convey their own message. As the film ends, there is no barnstorming speech, promise of change or bloody revenge fantasy, just a lingering shot of a man sobbing inconsolably.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Sun Sep 08, 2013 7:37 pm

http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/news/12-years-a-slave-at-the-toronto-film-festival-steve-mcqueens-brutal-scenes-divide-festival-audience-8803464.html


12 Years a Slave at the Toronto Film Festival: Steve McQueen's brutal scenes divide festival audience

Some walk out, others stay to cheer director Steve McQueen
Kaleem Aftab

Toronto

Sunday 08 September 2013

A harrowing depiction of slaves being beaten, tortured and killed that forced some audience members to walk out of the Toronto Film Festival has been defended by a film's Oscar-tipped British star.

Chiwetel Ejiofor said the violent scenes in Steve McQueen's adaptation of Solomon Northup's memoir, 12 Years a Slave, were necessary in the bondage tale.

"Solomon's story is full of [violence] but also full of beauty and hope and human respect and dignity," he said. "With Steve there to guide it, we weren't afraid to explore all that, and go to those dark places."

The "dark places" included brutal scenes that saw some members of the audience leave yesterday's screening. There are several realistic scenes of brutal violence, with McQueen paying particular attention to the scarring of the victims.

Ejiofor, who plays Northup – a free musician living in Saratoga, New York, who is kidnapped by supposed circus owners in Washington DC and sold into slavery in the South – is seen in one early scene being beaten 15 times with a bat and then whipped 14 times by his kidnappers.

McQueen does not shy away from showing slaves being hanged and killed, and in one particularly harrowing 10-minute scene, a plantation owner Epps, played by Michael Fassbender, strings a slave to a post before ordering her beating. She is shown being whipped 41 times.

McQueen's previous film Shame depicted a sex addict, but this time it is likely to be the violence that will attract attention.

McQueen is particularly effective in showing the impossibility of escape for the slaves in the film based on Northup's 1853 memoir. Northup is given the slave name Platt and told by fellow slaves not to reveal that he can read or write, or say that he can prove he is a free man, as this would result in certain death. The potential for brutal violence is overwhelming. Many beatings occur off-camera, but when McQueen does show brutality on-screen little is left to the imagination. These scenes may test the British censors, although given the story that is being told, it is likely no cuts will be ordered.

There was a deserved 10-minute standing ovation for the film at the festival with many in the audience in tears. Critics are already comparing 12 Years a Slave to Schindler's List. And the film is being touted as the frontrunner for next year's Oscars with a Best Picture nomination seemingly guaranteed.

Three Brits are likely to be in the running for individual prizes. Steve McQueen for best director, Ejiofor for best actor, and Fassbender for best supporting actor. In the film, Ejiofor delivers a performance comparable to his multi-award winning turn as Othello at the Donmar theatre in 2007.

McQueen and his impressive cast – which also includes Alfre Woodard, Brad Pitt and the Kenyan actress Lupita Nyong'o – took the stage after the credits rolled at its official world premiere to answer questions.

McQueen told the audience he wanted to adapt Northup's story as he felt the harsh realities of slavery had too rarely been depicted on the big screen. "I wanted to see that story on film," said the London-born filmmaker. "It's that simple."

Pitt, who also served as producer, said: "Steve was the first to ask why there have not been more films on the US history of slavery. It's a question it took a Brit to ask."

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Tue Sep 10, 2013 6:24 pm

http://thefilmstage.com/reviews/tiff-review-12-years-a-slave/

12 Years a Slave
TIFF 2013 Review

[Fox Searchlight; 2013]

Director: Steve McQueen

Runtime: 133 minutes


Written by Christopher Schobert, September 10, 2013 at 3:00 pm

As the end credits rolled during TIFF’s first press and industry screening of Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave, a peculiar thing occurred: very few people moved. Some quickly sprinted down the stairs, hurrying for their next screening, but many, like yours truly, just sat and stared, feeling emotionally overwhelmed by the experience. The film is that kind of success, a stunningly realized achievement that will clearly rank among the finest — if not the finest — films of 2013. McQueen, the British helmer behind Hunger and Shame, has brought America’s most shameful period to the screen with a fury and authenticity the likes of which audiences have never seen.

Perhaps a story of slavery set along these particular lines was necessary to truly connect with modern viewers, for the protagonist of this true tale, Solomon Northup, was a free man sold into slavery in 1841. (The film itself based on Northup’s eponymous account.) Solomon, played by the great Chiwetel Ejiofor, was a musician in Saratoga, New York, a respected husband and father of two. When offered the lucrative opportunity to perform with a traveling circus in Washington, D.C., he cannot help but accept. But in a stunning jump cut, we shift from a wine-fueled dinner to Solomon in nightmarish shackles, cruelly betrayed by the gentlemen who recruited him. Despite the almost 150-year time differential, the situation of a free man made enslaved is identifiable; there is a moment when Ejiofor looks directly into McQueen’s camera, and it hammers home the feeling that Solomon is one of us, and we are Solomon.

And whether one already knows how Northup’s story ended or not, we are an eyewitness to his brutal journey. One of Solomon’s early encounters after losing his freedom is with slimy trader (Paul Giamatti), with whom Solomon is rather lucky to have been sold to William Ford (Benedict Cumberbatch), a plantation owner who, about as likable as an onscreen slave owner can be, treats him with respect, even something resembling kindness. But, after an altercation with a monster in Ford’s employ (the ever-weasel-y Paul Dano), Solomon is sent to the cruel, complex, diabolical Edwin Epps. In what is perhaps the actor’s most effective performance yet, he is played by McQueen’s Hunger and Shame star, Michael Fassbender.

The majority of the film takes place on Epps’s horrific plantation. Here, we meet Epps’s equally vile wife (Sarah Paulson gives a performance unlike any she’s delivered thus far), the sweet-natured Patsey (Lupita Nyong’o), and, eventually, a Canadian carpenter played with confident efficiency by 12 Years’ producer, Brad Pitt. All are memorable, especially Fassbender’s Epps and Nyong’o’s Patsey, but there is no one who commands the screen like Ejiofor. Not every actor could make a shouted line like “I will not fall into despair” work, but nothing which comes out of his mouth sounds rote or unbelievable; the man is in almost every scene, and he nails all featuring his presence.

The film is, then, a tremendous achievement for its actors and directors, but also for screenwriter John Ridley, composer Hans Zimmer, cinematographer Sean Bobbitt, and, frankly, virtually everyone else involved. It’s rare to say a movie has no false notes, but such is the case with 12 Years a Slave, a film that, days later, may still leave viewers shaking. When was the last time you experienced a movie that truly lingered in the memory? McQueen has crafted such an epic, and, in doing so, has made a 21st-century masterpiece. This is likely to be the most moving cinematic experience of the year, and if there is any justice, McQueen’s film will be required viewing in American classrooms — itself something of an ironic statement, given that McQueen is British. You want to see, hear, and feel slavery? Here is the system, in all its awful components.

12 Years a Slave premiered at TIFF and opens on October 18. Click below for our complete coverage.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Wed Sep 11, 2013 10:55 am

http://www.flickeringmyth.com/2013/09/tiff-movie-review-12-years-slave-2013.html

TIFF Movie Review - 12 Years a Slave (2013)
Wednesday, 11 September 2013
12 Years a Slave, 2013.

Directed by Steve McQueen.

Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Fassbender, Sarah Paulson, Paul Dano, Paul Giamatti, Quvenzhané Wallis, Garret Dillahunt and Taran Killam.


SYNOPSIS:

In 1841 New Yorker Solomon Northup was kidnapped and sold into slavery.


A talented violinist believes that he has been offered a financially rewarding job only to be sold into slavery; over the span of 12 years he goes through a series of plantation owners until the wrong is rectified. This is the basic storyline for the latest offering from filmmaker Steve McQueen (Shame) which has the straightforward title 12 Years a Slave. Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor) is first shown in captivity trying to write a letter. Flashbacks are incorporated showing him living freely with his family and then the narrative reconnects with the opening sequence in a manner that would please Martin Scorsese (The Departed).

Undoubtedly comparisons will be made between the true life slavery saga and Schindler's List (1993) though the former is lot more brutal in its depiction of the derogation and violence. The imagery is painterly and sound design is so sharp that one can hear every whiplash as rips through the human skin. Surprises that occur are the clapping of hands by the Negro workers while the foreman John Tibeats (Paul Dano) sings a racist song over a medley of shots, Solomon Northup stumbling upon a hanging, and plantation owner Edwin Epps (Michael Fassbender) dancing across the sleeping quarters of his workers.

Chiwetel Ejiofor (Kinky Boots) carries the narrative weight upon his shoulders and does so with conviction and subtlety. Paul Dano (Prisoners) is excelling in the role of weasel characters much like Edward Norton (Fight Club). Michael Fassbender (Prometheus) embodies a moody psychotic who is unpredictable and volatile. The arrival of Brad Pitt (Se7en) is a critical plot element but his bearded face makes one wonder if he is trying to channel the look of Abraham Lincoln. Paul Giamatti (Sideways) is dependable as a slave dealer. Lupita Nyong'o (Non-Stop) is very posed for a newcomer.

Whites are not caricatures but undone by their own ignorance and purposeful misinterpretation of the Bible to suit the needs of business. Obstacles and hardships are plentiful which makes the protagonist resemble Orpheus who descended into Hades and comes back. There is an painful long shot where Northup is left hanging with a noose around his neck and he slowly makes his way toward the camera. Considering the subject matter it is hard to imagine audience members getting entertained. Perhaps it is more accurate to say emotionally drained as crying was heard during the press screening. 12 Years a Slave will certainly be a major Oscar contender.

Flickering Myth Rating - Film: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ / Movie: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Fri Sep 13, 2013 4:26 pm

http://www.complex.com/pop-culture/2013/09/12-years-a-slave-review


TIFF Review: The Amazing "12 Years a Slave" Begins Its Road to the Academy Awards Here
By Matt Barone | Sep 12, 2013 | 8:36 am | Permalink

Review by Matt Barone (@MBarone)

Director: Steve McQueen
Stars: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Paul Giamatti, Lupita Nyong'o, Adepero Oduye, Sarah Paulson, Brad Pitt, Alfre Woodard
Running time: 133 minutes
✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✩
Score: 9/10

Lee Daniels could learn a lot from Steve McQueen.

Despite its huge box office success and mostly positive critical response, Lee Daniels' The Butler suffers from one major, deal-breaking (for me, at least) flaw: It's an unnecessary, often frustrating hey-it's-that-famous-actor-now affair. A stranger to subtlety, Daniels cast several big-name actors to play minor, sometimes single-scene roles. Robin Williams as Dwight Eisenhower. Liev Schreiber as Lyndon Johnson. Mariah Carey as a mother working on a plantation. And…David Banner as Carey's character's husband? Yes, that's true, and incredibly distracting. It's not that those folks aren't good actors—they're all fine in The Butler. It's a two-headed matter of tone and intent. Rather than play the movie with restraint, Daniels goes for the big emotions, all-around showiness, and, as a result, overheated melodrama. He really wants you to acknowledge that it's not some no-name actress playing Nancy Reagan but, rather, Jane Fonda. He'd probably be heartbroken if gossip bloggers didn't notice Minka Kelly playing Jackie Onassis Kennedy. Yes, Lee Daniels has the industry gusto and respect to gather such an impressive lineup of talent. Please, give him that praise—it's what he so desperately craves.

McQueen, however, doesn't need your back patting. Heavyweights like Paul Giamatti and Brad Pitt don't show up for minuscule cameos in his latest film, 12 Years a Slave, because the British filmmaker wants people to admire his clout. He's confident enough to know that the film does all the heavy lifting, so that by the time Pitt appears late into 12 Years a Slave for a brief but pivotal performance, McQueen's already earned the carte blanche to introduce whomever he pleases. The film is a remarkable achievement in tone, storytelling, and boldness that never calls attention to its bravery. The A-listers involved aren't simply playing dress-up; they're small, though equally powerful and important, parts of a much bigger picture. One that's as devastating as it is expertly made.

Chiwetel Ejiofor stars as Solomon Northup, a free black man living in Saratoga, New York, in 1841, with his wife and two children. He's an accomplished violin player, and when his family goes on a two-week trip out of town, Solomon's tricked into joining a circus to share his musical abilities in Washington, D.C. His travel companions drug Solomon and sell him into slavery after a week's worth of performances, for which he wakes up in chains, confined to a dark, lonely room in an unknown building barely miles away from the Capitol Building. As 12 Years a Slave progresses, Solomon is passed around from one slave master to the next, starting with an all-business trader (Giamatti), getting bought by the kindly Mr. Ford (Benedict Cumberbatch), renamed "Platt," and, after a violent confrontation with Ford's malicious righthand man (Paul Dano), ending up under the ownership of Master Epps (Michael Fassbender). Tyrannical, impulsive, and unhinged, Epps becomes the film's main antagonist, particularly in how he mistreats Patsy (Lupita Nyong'o, worthy of all the Best Supporting Actress awards), his helpless plaything.

Inevitably, comparisons have been drawn between 12 Years a Slave and Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained, parallels that are unavoidable once you've seen the former (based on Northup's 1853 memoir of the same name). For one, like Jamie Foxx whipping the hell out of that evil white man, there's a cathartic moment in McQueen's film where Solomon lays the smack-down on Dano's character. But connecting 12 Years a Slave to Django Unchained is like making parallels between the startling serial killer flick Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer and Showtime's goofy Dexter. Whereas Tarantino played every scene for applause and cool-guy points, McQueen's trying to paint as honest—moreover, brutally real—a presentation of our country's most inhumane period as possible. His method: showing the horrors of slavery (whippings, humiliation, the tearing apart of families, hangings) without any filters or genre trappings.

The effects are clear in 12 Years a Slave's most harrowing sequence, where Epps forces Solomon to administer seemingly endless lashings upon Patsy's back. In a single take, McQueen's camera calmly moves around the scene, shifting from the hideous scars on Patsy's back instantly forming on Patsy's back as the whip makes contact to the look of anguish on Solomon's face, right back around to the look of pain on Patsy's. You're right there with them. It's impossible to look away.

12 Years a Slave is the third towering motion picture from McQueen, who's firmly established himself as one of the world's best working directors, bar none. His previous films, Hunger (2008) and Shame (2011), were aggressively raw depictions of prison life and sexual addiction, respectively. Unless you're an adventurous moviegoer who's willing to submit to a filmmaker's darkest impulses, they're inaccessible. Here, though, perhaps knowing the importance of the material and the fact that he's working with Brad Pitt's Plan B production company, McQueen replaces his usually uninviting approach delivering a gorgeously shot, somewhat Hollywood veneer to the film, right down to its emotive, Oscar-ready musical score.

But make no mistake—he's no less daring. Known for long, static shots that reveal much about characters without cutting away or needing any exposition, McQueen one-ups himself midway into 12 Years a Slave. Having narrowly avoided being hung, Solomon's left in the noose that's attached to a tree, his feet barely touching the muddy dirt beneath him, the rope still tight enough to restrict his breathing. And as he remains there, struggling, life goes on all around him—his fellow slaves ignore him. The wind blows as normal. The soundtrack is all gnats, rustling leaves, and other nature sounds.

As much as you're hoping that either McQueen will switch frames or someone, anyone will help Solomon out, everything remains as is. You feel Mr. Northup's misery. As you do every other emotion he feels over the course of his 12 grueling years as a slave, thanks to Chiwetel Ejiofor's exceptional performance. Always one of the movie game's most underrated actors (see: Kinky Boots, Children of Men, Talk to Me), the London native is a powerhouse, internalizing his emotions when it's needed (McQueen isn't afraid to fasten the camera on Ejiofor's face for extended portraits) and lashing out with thunderous sorrow and anger when he's pushed beyond his constantly readjusted breaking point.

When 12 Years a Slave concludes, you're left reeling from both Solomon Northup's incredible ordeal and the mastery with which McQueen has executed the whole thing. Tears are warranted, though not requested by the director or yanked from viewers' eyeballs through insecure artistry. Jane Fonda's services aren't required.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Admin on Fri Sep 13, 2013 4:51 pm

http://www.newstalkflorida.com/12-years-a-slave-first-look-review/


Updated: September 12, 2013, 15:36 PM

Stark, visceral and unrelenting, 12 Years a Slave is not just a great film but a necessary one. The phrase “long-awaited” has been much used to describe this third feature from British director Steve McQueen, which sees Chiwetel Ejiofor alongside Michael Fassbender in a star-studded cast. It’s a common piece of cinematic hyperbole but it also describes the function this picture serves in confronting a practice that endured in the United States of America for nearly 250 years.

Based on a first-hand account, Ejiofor plays Solomon Northup, a violin player who lives a happy and relatively affluent life in Saratoga Springs, near New York City. It is 1841 and Northup is a free man apparently accepted as an equal by his white peers. When his wife takes a trip out of town, however, Northup is tempted into earning extra money by performing for a travelling circus. He heads to Washington with new companions only to be drugged, kidnapped and bound in chains just a stone’s throw from the Capitol building.

12 Years a Slave is a scarifying, unblinking portrayal of life as it was for tens of thousands of people less than 200 years ago. It pulls no punches. But neither does it lecture. McQueen chooses to let all the actions and inactions convey their own message. As the film ends, there is no barnstorming speech, promise of change or bloody revenge fantasy, just a lingering shot of a man sobbing inconsolably.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: TYaS reviews

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Page 1 of 3 1, 2, 3  Next

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum