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 12 Years a Slave

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Triceratops
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PostSubject: 12 Years a Slave   Mon 20 Jan 2014, 10:26

I saw this film at the weekend. Based on the true story of freeman Solomon Northrup and his abduction by kidnappers for sale in the Deep South as a plantation slave, the film traces Solomon's captivity over the period. 



There is a very brutal scene, with the sadistic Edwin Epps and Patsey the slavegirl, so be warned.

The book the film is based on is out of copywrite, so anyone wishing to read it can do so;

https://archive.org/stream/twelveyearsasla00nortgoog#page/n8/mode/2up
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Caro
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PostSubject: Re: 12 Years a Slave   Sun 29 Jun 2014, 17:56

I watched this on the way to Britain on the plane - not necessarily the best place to watch such a heart-wrenching film.  You feel a bit silly wiping away tears on an aeroplane.  There were some very brutal scenes and I was perhaps a little dismayed to realise they lost a little of their power to shock me as the movie went on, though the scene when the main character had to beat someone was still very distressing.

I suppose I am being unduly cynical but I wondered if it was significant that the two famous actors (Benedict Cumberbatch and Brad Pitt) were both given the only slightly sympathetic white roles in the film (though Pitt's character proved to be something of a hypocrite).
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PaulRyckier
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PostSubject: Re: 12 Years a Slave   Mon 30 Jun 2014, 21:10

Caro,

I now see that you are again on board. When you left some weeks ago I promised to reply on an intriguing thread of yours and now I don't remember the subject anymore...have to seek it back...something to do with "nationalism"???...no I don't guess...will do the search...

Kind regards and with esteem, Paul.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: 12 Years a Slave   Tue 01 Jul 2014, 15:21

Hi Caro,

I've just watched the film. The dialogue was superb - you could hear the majestic cadences of the King James Bible in John Ridley's brilliant screenplay.

I don't know if I've related this anecdote before, but at a KJV seminar at the University of Exeter a couple of years ago, I heard a speaker, a distinguished theology scholar who had at one time been responsible for the organisation of worship at Harvard University chapel, tell how once she had asked a guest black preacher what verses from the Bible he intended to use in his sermon. I think as she did so she made a gesture toward the pew Bibles in the chapel - the New International version. He waved them aside calling them "white men's Bibles" and as he did so, he produced from his pocket the Bible he intended to use. "This is the black man's Bible," he declared. Of course it was the now so despised KJV that he flourished at her. The same book ironically that the vicious - Edward Epps was it? - plantation owner in the film held aloft, proclaiming to his slaves, "That's scripture!"
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LadyinRetirement
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PostSubject: Re: 12 Years a Slave   Fri 04 Jul 2014, 19:29

I recently saw copies [I think in DVD form] of this film for sale in my local co-op shop. It's not been out that long so I wondered if it's one of those films that has been an artistic success but not a commercial one.
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PostSubject: Re: 12 Years a Slave   Wed 09 Jul 2014, 14:57

@LadyinRetirement wrote:
I recently saw copies [I think in DVD form] of this film for sale in my local co-op shop. It's not been out that long so I wondered if it's one of those films that has been an artistic success but not a commercial one.

 I think it did OK money wise, LiR. The figures from IMDB give the film a production budget of $20 million and it's US gross takings of $56 million.

 as an aside, one of the members on Historum, Charlie Bravo, has a role in the film (Burch)
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