A free man is abducted and sold into slavery.

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A quite frankly astounding supporting cast (Brad Pitt, Paul Giamitti, Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Fassbender, Paul Dano) frame a solid but not Oscar worthy performance from Chiwetel Ejiofor. The real stars are Michael Fassbender who froths with indignation one minute and charms the next and relative newcomer Lupita Nyong’o as luckless slave Patsy.

I am not really familiar with Ejiofor’s previous work but he didn’t have enough screen presence and almost faded into the background when up against heavyweights such as Pitt and particularly Fassbender.

One thing that 12 Years a Slave does indicate is the versatility of director Steve McQueen, coming as it does after the vastly different Shame. This will probably win Best Picture but it probably wouldn’t make my top ten of 2013.

IMDB TOP 250 #178

Won 3 Oscars (9 nominations):

Best Picture

Best Supporting Actress

Best Adapted Screenplay