12 Years A Slave: What You Need To Know
It took home three Oscars, won universal critical acclaim and made almost $200 million at the box office. Now, Steve McQueen's dark, troubling masterpiece 12 Years A Slave is about to be released on DVD and Blu-Ray on Monday (May 12th). Here's what you need to know about it…
What’s the plot?
12 Years A Slave is the story of Solomon Northup, a free black man from upstate New York, who is abducted and sold into slavery in 1841 and his quest to survive the terrible torture and backbreaking conditions that he is forced to work in as he works to try and get back to his family.
Who’s in it?
Chiwetel Ejiofor delivers an outstanding performance as Northup, with Michael Fassbender on terrifying form as Edwin Epps, Northup's second owner. Lupita Nyong'o bagged an Oscar for her turn as Patsey, a slave who suffers horrific cruelty as the hands of Fassbender's Epps.
There are also supporting roles for the likes of Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Paul Giamatti,, Sarah Paulson, Brad Pitt, and Alfre Woodard.
Does it deliver?
Absolutely it does. It's not an easy watch though. Director Steve McQueen shows the torture and cruelty that slaves experienced in its full horror and there are numerous moments throughout the film that will have you watching through your fingers. But, as a piece of cinema, it's outstanding. All the performances are terrific and its beautifully shot. An absolute must see.
12 Years A Slave is released on DVD and Blu-Ray on Monday (May 12th) in hmv stores all over the UK.