This harrowing depiction of slavery is getting a lot of buzz around its release.
12 Years A Slave, the historical drama based on true events, detailing the life and trials of Solomon Northup, is out in the UK and in selected US cinemas today, however it won’t see a wide release until January 24th of next year. The film centers on Northup, a free, educated man from a well-off family living in upstate New York who gets tricked and abducted on a trip to Washington. Following his abduction, Solomon is forced to work on a Louisiana plantation, despite the fact that in 1841, there are laws in place against slavery.
Ejiofor looks excellent in this challenging adaptation.
Solomon’s new life puts him under the thumb of the brutal and abusive owner Edwin Epps. However, determined to regain his freedom, Solomon befriends Samuel Bass, a Canadian carpenter, also working on the plantation. Eventually, Bass’ friendship changes Solomon’s life forever. The film is an exploration into themes of slavery freedom, racial inequality and the cruelty of mankind.
The movie, which is already being predicted a successful awards season, was adapted from the 1853 autobiography Twelve Years a Slave by the real Solomon Northup. Screenwriter John Ridley ('U Turn', 'Red Tails') created the screenplay, with acclaimed BAFTA-winning director Steve McQueen at the helm. The talented, if underrated Chiwetel Ejiofor takes on the role of Solomon Northup in this challenging and engaging adaptation.
Michael Fassbender is cold and ruthless as Edwin Epps.