I don’t get why “12 Years a Slave” is so groundbreaking

Home // Forums // Movies // I don’t get why “12 Years a Slave” is so groundbreaking

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 53 total)
Created
4 years ago
Last Reply
4 years ago
52
replies
3974
views
27
users
11
4
3
  • VanHeflin
    Member
    Joined:
    Feb 25th, 2013
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135814

    I’m sorry. I know this is controversial and I’m not trying to be racist BUT I just don’t see why this film is so acclaimed. Haven’t we seen this story before in Roots, Mandingo and just last year in Django? 

    Why is Sasha Stone so obsessed with it?  

    Reply
    Candy
    Member
    Joined:
    Nov 7th, 2011
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135816

    I find the film  overrated and recall most of the themes in 12 Yrs being shown  in PG rated form in Roots. As for Sasha I’ve stopped listening to her over the top praise for a film I consider good not great.I believe she said a win for McQueen would “change the world” or some such nonsense.I think that kind of hyperbole will hurt more then help the film.

    ReplyCopy URL
    Jackson Powell
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 5th, 2012
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135817

    ok here we go.  

    its groundbreaking because this is the first movie about slavery that is written, directed, and produced by Black people that has gained wide acclaim.  on top of that its unflinching and not a glossed over film, made to make you feel easy about slavery.  No film about slavery should aim to do that, imo.  Its not an easy subject to take in, nor should it be.  No movie about American slavery has been been this well done….and on top of that it was done by a acclaimed Black filmmaker.  This film will go down in history the same way Schinder’s List has, imo.  and for good reason.  Sublime Acting, gorgeous cinematography, production design, music.  12 Years A Slave is beautifully poetic piece of art.  Black films rarely get this time of production value, which is VERY sad.

    Django as great as it was…..is a spaghetti western that was part comedy.  Roots didn’t go far as it could have….the time period and television being its road blocks.  and I can’t speak on Mandingo.  haven’t seen it.

    None of those films depict slavery in the way 12 Years a Slave has.  

    BTW have you actually seen it?  

    ReplyCopy URL
    Tony Ruiz
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 5th, 2010
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135818

    I don’t see this as necessarily being worthy of its own thread.  But I think that while it is a good film, it’s not a particularly great film.

    ReplyCopy URL
    Jackson Powell
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 5th, 2012
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135819

    This is an unnecessariy thread made by someone who probably an American Hustle/Gravity fan…..who wants to use this forum to bash another front runner. 

    there is a 12 Years a Slave thread where this question could have been answered for you

     

    ReplyCopy URL
    Tyler The Awesome Guy
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 19th, 2011
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135820

    It’s groundbreaking because never before was there a movie this honest about slavery. It’s hard to watch, yet you can’t look away. It’s cruel, yet it’s necessary. 9 out of 10 of the people will be sickened by the subject matter, yet 10 out of 10 would be rooting for Solomon Northup all the way through. There were other movies about slavery before, but none captured the true horror and the awful inhumanity between man than Twelve Years did.

    It’s not perfect, but I happened to love it. I respect your opinion though. After all, not everyone can love every film. 

    ReplyCopy URL
    VanHeflin
    Member
    Joined:
    Feb 25th, 2013
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135821

    Yes I’ve seen the film. I have the screener and will vote for Lupita as BSA. I think she and Fassbender are wonderful and their scenes are the best part of the film. 

    Ejifor’s character is too reactive and he’s a little blank in the role. I feel that is why has award take has been so small.

    I don’t really understand the reason for the Shakesperian type line delivery and feel that is a big enough directorial misfire to eliminate McQueen for best director.  (at least on my ballot)

     

    ReplyCopy URL
    Jackson B
    Participant
    Joined:
    May 29th, 2013
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135822

    i saw this for the first time tonight.  it was my last of all the nominated films to see.

    i really liked it (for a long movie it didnt feel too long to me)

    it was good.  told a great story, some of the lesser supporting actors were really poor though.  i wish Sarah Paulson would have been given some more praise.  If they had just given her a “big” scene of some kind, she could have been in contention.

     

    overall i thought it was really good

    ReplyCopy URL
    Jackson Powell
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 5th, 2012
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135823

    Yes I’ve seen the film. I have the screener and will vote for Lupita as BSA. I think she and Fassbender are wonderful and their scenes are the best part of the film. 

    Ejifor’s character is too reactive and he’s a little blank in the role. I feel that is why has award take has been so small.

    I don’t really understand the reason for the Shakesperian type line delivery and feel that is a big enough directorial misfire to eliminate McQueen for best director.  (at least on my ballot)

     

    well to be fair.  Ejifor has won most of the critics awards…….across the country and has was runner-up in all the big ones……NYC, LA, and National Society of Film Critics. and Matthew has won none of the big critics awards. 

    His character was supposed to be “reactive”.  He was a slave that was supposed to only spoke when spoken to.  and had to be careful of his every move.  his character was never going to be as flashy as Matthew’s.

    I think people on here are missing a lot of the subtle beauty in Chiwetel’s performance.  everything was in his eyes.  the look on his face when he left the last plantation is enough to get a win.  its was so powerful.  I enjoy performances that are subtle and layerd like his.  I compare it to Adrien Brody’s work in the Pianist.  only this one is better, imo

    p.s.  I LOVED the script and delivery.  its “Shakespearean” quality made it all the more elegant.  That in itself makes it stand out from all the other slave movies we’ve seen. thanks for pointing that out.  

    ReplyCopy URL
    starfishgirl
    Member
    Joined:
    Oct 10th, 2011
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135824

    the shakespearean delivery bothered me too- it kept taking me out of the experience, which was supposed to be realistic. but i think i need to watch this again, because so many people LOVE it and think it’s this astounding masterpiece. i need to take another look.

    i gotta defend Roots though- just because it was PG doesn’t mean it had no impact. that had a huge impact on me when i saw it, and some of the scenes in that were unforgettable too, like when kunta kinte is whipped until he says his new name. and the characters on that show were fully rounded, memorable people aside from being slaves- they were not just reactive, as in this movie (of course, to be fair, they had a lot more time to develop those characters). and sasha stone’s insistence that no movie has ever shown that slavemasters raped the women is completely and utterly wrong- Roots made that point over and over again, as every black female character in that series was ultimately raped by their white master. The only thing in 12 Years that seemed like a new point being made about slavery was Alfre Woodard’s character as the mistress of that household- that was new, but a lot of it I knew I was going to see going in- beatings, whippings, family separation and rape.

    My problem is that I just didn’t think it was very enlightening about slavery- we just see everything in more graphic fashion. But that doesn’t mean it’s not worthwhile or a good movie, so I’m going to have to look at it again to see if I can see this masterpiece status that so many are claiming. Obviously to someone who doesn’t know the horrors of slavery this would be groundbreaking, so I can see it as a benchmark going forward, as a movie to teach people about it. 

    ReplyCopy URL
    Anonymous
    Joined:
    Jan 1st, 1970
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135825


    @jackson Powell you should calm down. None of us want to bash any movies here. Someone asked a simple question and we are all here to answer him/her. I see your enthusiasm, but as you can see, you are the only one who’s raving the movie here…it has to mean something.

    @vanheflin I think “12 Years a Slave” was a good film, but I find it overrated as well. It has a promisng story, great performances & characters and outstanding editing/score. I liked it, but when I was watching it in the cinema, there were moments when I was bored by it (the same goes to Amercan Hustle). Also the slavery topic is kind of used-to-death in 2014 and the fact that “it has to win the Oscar” because it’s about slavery is annoying as hell. This is a good movie, but nowhere near “Gravity” for example. And Steve McQueen is nowhere near Alfonso Cuarón. And Chiwetel Ejiofor is nowhere near Leo DiCaprio. It’s just not the best movie of the year. I know some of you have hard time accepting that, but it’s still remain the consensus among movie fans.

    ReplyCopy URL
    Eddy Q
    Participant
    Joined:
    Oct 13th, 2012
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135826

    I think this is a time to quote the late Roger Ebert: “It’s not what a movie is about, it’s how it is about it”. I don’t mind that the film doesn’t offer “groundbreaking” insights into slavery, as it is an adaptation of a specific memoir, not a historical treatise. The formal nature of the dialogue (some have described it as “Shakespearean”) is similar to the book and I found it very authentic. Most importantly, it’s masterful filmmaking, the cinematic technique brilliantly serving the narrative. And Ejiofor is not ‘blank’ at all – he absorbs everything around him, and responds with subtle shifts of facial expression and body language. It’s to his credit that he doesn’t make it feel like an actor’s showcase, and the role is undoubtedly more difficult than other more active types of roles. And Vincelette, your comparison with DiCaprio is completely arbitrary, as is your description of “consensus” among movie fans.

    ReplyCopy URL
    Anonymous
    Joined:
    Jan 1st, 1970
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135827

    I think this is a time to quote the late Roger Ebert: “It’s not what a movie is about, it’s how it is about it”. I don’t mind that the film doesn’t offer “groundbreaking” insights into slavery, as it is an adaptation of a specific memoir, not a historical treatise. The formal nature of the dialogue (some have described it as “Shakespearean”) is similar to the book and I found it very authentic. Most importantly, it’s masterful filmmaking, the cinematic technique brilliantly serving the narrative. And Ejiofor is not ‘blank’ at all – he absorbs everything around him, and responds with subtle shifts of facial expression and body language. It’s to his credit that he doesn’t make it feel like an actor’s showcase, and the role is undoubtedly more difficult than other more active types of roles. And Vincelette, your comparison with DiCaprio is completely arbitrary, as is your description of “consensus” among movie fans.

    I was talking about the movie itself. The consensus is “Her” or “The Wolf of Wall Street”, not “12 Years a Slave”.

     I only mentioned DiCaprio as someone brilliant in the lead actor category. He would be a much worthy winner than Ejiofor, who’s a clear runner-up in my rank.  

    ReplyCopy URL
    Gabriel
    Participant
    Joined:
    Jul 10th, 2012
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135828

    I’m sorry. I know this is controversial and I’m not trying to be racist BUT I just don’t see why this film is so acclaimed. Haven’t we seen this story before in Roots, Mandingo and just last year in Django? 

    Why is Sasha Stone so obsessed with it?  

    From the many comments she’s made, It seems that Sasha Stone just wants it to win because it’s “important” and it will “make history”.

    ReplyCopy URL
    Eddy Q
    Participant
    Joined:
    Oct 13th, 2012
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #135829

    [quote=”Wilkomirsk11″]I think this is a time to quote the late Roger Ebert: “It’s not what a movie is about, it’s how it is about it”. I don’t mind that the film doesn’t offer “groundbreaking” insights into slavery, as it is an adaptation of a specific memoir, not a historical treatise. The formal nature of the dialogue (some have described it as “Shakespearean”) is similar to the book and I found it very authentic. Most importantly, it’s masterful filmmaking, the cinematic technique brilliantly serving the narrative. And Ejiofor is not ‘blank’ at all – he absorbs everything around him, and responds with subtle shifts of facial expression and body language. It’s to his credit that he doesn’t make it feel like an actor’s showcase, and the role is undoubtedly more difficult than other more active types of roles. And Vincelette, your comparison with DiCaprio is completely arbitrary, as is your description of “consensus” among movie fans.

    I was talking about the movie itself. The consensus is “Her” or “The Wolf of Wall Street”, not “12 Years a Slave”.  [/quote]

    Says who? Consensus is such a vague thing. And The Wolf of Wall Street’s detractors have been just as vocal as 12 Years a Slave’s.

    ReplyCopy URL
Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 53 total)
Reply To: I don’t get why “12 Years a Slave” is so groundbreaking

You can use BBCodes to format your content.
Your account can't use Advanced BBCodes, they will be stripped before saving.

Similar Topics
Spenser... - Aug 16, 2017
Movies
Tegan - Aug 16, 2017
Movies