Steve McQueen has been an interesting public figure in the world of cinema ever since he released his second indie feature “Shame” in 2011. “Shame” was met with positive reviews, but a subject matter not fit for many. The film received an NC-17 rating for explicit sexual content, which was fitting considering it was a film about sex addiction.
Michael Fassbender was the star of “Shame” and he is a supporting player here. His performance was talked about a lot after the screening of “12 Years a Slave,” but not quite as much as the films star Chiwetel Ejiofor playing Solomon Northup.
The consensus of the reactions is that Ejiofor delivers a career best with Fassbender and Nyong’o performing great as well. Also that the film is incredibly dark and violent, embodying the true horrors of slavery. After these reactions, this would be a safe film to bet on for the Oscars.
No critical reviews have been posted for the film yet. Here are some Twitter reactions:
@erickohn: 12 YEARS A SLAVE is a startlingly realized period drama, maybe the best movie about slavery ever. So help me, Ejiofor deserves that Oscar.
@wellshwood: Sad & ghastly as the story is, “12 Years A Slave” is a humanist masterpiece & a slamdunk Best Picture contender right out the gate.
@wellshwood (Later): “12 Years” is easily McQueen’s finest film. A perfect blending of art & narrative. Brutal but compassionate. A great American epic.
@wellshwood (Later): Chiwetel Ejiofor is probably THE Best Actor contender to beat at this stage of the game. Who can beat him? Who could not vote for him?
@wellshwood (Later): John Ridley’s “12 Years A Slave” script is deft, direct, unsparing and highly intelligent. It puts Quentin’s “Django” screenplay to shame.
@wellshwood (Later): Masterful, tender and eloquent, “12 Years” nonetheless contains some of the most horrifically vile behavior I’ve ever seen or contemplated.
@firstshowing: Huge standing ovation for 12 Years from the corwd here at Telluride. Everyone is here: Chiwetel, Brad Pitt, Michael Fassbender and McQueen.
@firstshowing (Later): There are scenes in 12 Years a Slave where just watching the face, the deep emotions and nuances of Chiwetel Ejiofor, will make you tear up.
@AwardsDaily: Another powerful collaboration for McQueen and Fassbender. They make magic together. #Telluride
@AwardsDaily (Later): Sustained applause for 12 Years and standing ovation.
@HitFixGregory: Powerful 12 years a slave appropriately brutal with a stunning turn by Chiwetel Ejiofor which should earn him a best actor Oscar #Telluride
@HitFixGregory (Later): Michael Fassbender is the pure embodiment of slavery’s evil in 12 Years a Slave. #Telluride
@HitFixGregory (Later): It’s hard to think of any film that has so startlingly depicted the horrors of slavery as seen in 12 Years a Slave. #Telluride
@eugenenovikov: 12 YEARS A SLAVE (B) Set expectations to “straightforward.” (But good.)
@TomiLaffly: McQueen’s camera fixates to brutal effect. 12 Years A Slave-harshest account of racism I’ve seen. Get ready USA-it’ll hit in a big way. WOW!
@MrDanZak: 12 YEARS A SLAVE = Masterful rendering of intolerable cruelty. Standing O for McQ, Ejiofor, Pitt, Fass & stunning Lupita Nyong’o. #TFF40
@AskDebruge: 12 YEARS A SLAVE (Steve McQueen, 2013), #Telluride – 9/10
@AskDebruge (Later): Can we rename McQueen’s last movie “LUST”? SHAME would’ve been the perfect title to capture the gut-wrenching impact of his latest feature.
- 12 Years a Slave Adam Stockhausen Alfre Woodard Anthony Katagas Arnon Milchan Benedict Cumberbatch Bill Pohlad Brad Pitt Chiwetel Ejiofor Dede Gardner Dwight Henry Fox Searchlight Pictures Garret Dillahunt Hans Zimmer Jeremy Kleiner Joe Walker John Ridley Lupit Nyong'o Michael Fassbender Michael Kenneth Williams Paul Dano Paul Giamatti Quvenzhane Wallis Sarah Paulson Sean Bobbit Solomon Northup Steve McQueen Taran Killam Telluride early reactions Telluride Film Festival Tessa Ross