12 Years A Slave
There's not much more to be said about Steve McQueen's landmark film "12 Years A Slave". Personally, it left me a blubbering mess when I screened it in October. Despite the hellish images on screen though, the film hasn't left my head space since. Apart from its emotional power, it's so bold in the way it tackles its difficult subject through cinema. There are so many unexpected details - the eloquent 18th century dialogue, the painterly cinematography, the stoicism of its protagonist and the complex portrayals of the black condition (Alfre Woodward's character for example). The title and story may indicate a traditional period piece, but the way Solomon's journey is presented is far from typical. "12 Years A Slave" is a daring, moving and vital document of human history.
Steve McQueen, 12 Years A Slave
Steve McQueen is a stark visualist director and his uncompromising style is on full display in "12 Years A Slave". Yesterday I praised Sean Bobbitt's contribution to the film and much of that is due to McQueen's own visual ideas. Every scene has a purpose and I'm still trying to unpack the deeper meaning behind so many of them. The film's ensemble is amazing but at the end of the day the real star of the film is Steve McQueen himself. He's a shining example of the auteur theory and his work in creating this extraordinary film certainly merits an Oscar nomination come Thursday morning.
Best Supporting Actor
Michael Fassbender, 12 Years A Slave
We all know that Michael Fassbender is a great actor but nothing could quite prepare me for this. He's disturbingly captivating as slavemaster Epps, giving depth to a fundamentally unlikable character. He's got this indescribable spark in his eye that let's you know that this was a real human being, not an exaggerated monster created for a movie. It's no easy task and Fassbender pulls it off to perfection. It's time for the Academy to acknowledge the brilliance of Michael Fassbender by finally nominating him for an Oscar.
Best Cinematography, Best Actress, Best Actor
Best Supporting Actress, Best Original Screenplay, Best Production Design
Best Foreign Language Film, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Makeup & Hairstyling
Best Editing, Best Costume Design, Best Original Song
Best Animated Feature, Best Documentary Feature, Best Visual Effects
Best Original Score, Best Sound Editing, Best Sound Mixing