Share

African American Film Critics Name 12 Years a Slave Best Picture of the year

It remains fundamentally wrong to me that there has to be a special group of critics for African Americans. The critics in this country should work harder to diversify their membership.  Same goes for women.  The Los Angeles Film Critics is 45 males to 11 females, etc.

1. “12 Years a Slave”
2. “Lee Daniels: The Butler”
3. “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom”
4. “American Hustle”
5. “Gravity”
6. “Fruitvale Station”
7.  “Dallas Buyers Club”
8. “Saving Mr. Banks”
9. “Out of the Furnace”
10. “42”

Best Actor -Forest Whitaker, “Lee Daniels: The Butler” (The Weinstein Company)
Best Actress–Sandra Bullock, “Gravity” (Warner Bros.)
Best Supporting Actress Oprah Winfrey, “Lee Daniels: The Butler” (The Weinstein Company)
Best Supporting Actor    Jared Leto, “Dallas Buyers Club” (Focus Features)
Best World Cinema  Mother of George” (Oscilloscope Laboratories)
Breakout Performance Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a Slave” (Fox Searchlight)
Best Director   Steve McQueen, “12 Years a Slave” (Fox Searchlight)
Best Screenplay John Ridley, “12 Years a Slave” (Fox Searchlight)
Best Music: Raphael Sadiq, “Black Nativity” (RCA Inspirational)
Best Independent Film:   “Fruitvale Station” (The Weinstein Company)
Best Animation: “Frozen” (Walt Disney Pictures)
Best Documentary: “American Promise” (Rada Film Group)

50 Comments on this Post

  1. Al Robinson

    I agree Sasha,

    that just seems weird that there is a separate group just for African-Americans.

    BTW, I finally saw Nebraska today, and I must say, you were right Sasha! Everything you have said about Nebraska is true. The critics SHOULD strongly consider this movie for Best Picture, and so on….

  2. Al Robinson

    BTW, I can’t figure out if it seems right or wrong for African-Americans to like 12 Years a Slave. If I were black, I’m not sure I would necessarily want to see a movie about slavery. Especially the brutality in it.

  3. Al Robinson

    But then again, I don’t know if it’s right for Caucasians to like 12 Years a Slave either. It seems wrong to think of liking a movie about slavery, where white people are demoralizing and beating black people.

    I like the movie because it was very well done, well told, and so forth. I am NOT okay with our past.

    Does anyone else understand, and agree with what I’m talking about?

  4. Al Robinson

    By saying “our” I mean, the United States of America’s. Not our’s meaning yours and mine.

  5. You All Take This Too Seriously

    I mean, it just seems like they are mostly selecting movies that were about race relations/issues. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but it does diminish the idea of ranking the “best” films of the year IF they are mostly basing it on that criteria. I mean, “42”? Come on. Long Walk to Freedom as #3? The Butler?!! (jk about that one….sort of).

    I typed that first and paused, and reflected on what I wrote. Was that racist? Just because these films don’t fall under the “consensus” of what is considered “best”, can’t that also be interpreted as saying how white all of the other critics groups/guilds/awards voters are? Is this about race at all, or do the African American Film Critics really put race aside and believe that films like 42 and Mandela deserve honors over many, many others? Or, even if they ARE intentionally picking/praising films that focused on black characters/struggles, is that even a bad thing in the first place?

    Man I’m tired. But I gotta process these things, you know. What do you think?

  6. Al Robinson

    You All Take This Too Seriously,

    I know what you mean, and I think it comes off that way too.

  7. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    …even if they ARE intentionally picking/praising films that focused on black characters/struggles, is that even a bad thing in the first place? …What do you think?

    I think it’s sincerely gratifying to see a thoughtful individual ask a touchy question and then work through the possibilities, sorting out the various meanings, to arrive at a sensitive answer to his own question.

  8. You All Take This Too Seriously

    @Ryan, I appreciate that (unless I missed some super subtle sarcasm).

    I like to be sassy on here (and sometimes my issues are projected by venting negative things sometimes…oh, the internet), but I was really trying to write out something that I would really have trouble finding the space to talk about it out loud. Anyway, thanks.

  9. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    No sarcasm! I meant every word. I plugged “SINCERELY” into my reply for a reason. I packed my sentence full of appreciative adjectives for a reason.

  10. You All Take This Too Seriously

    Gah! Missed word. Too much wine on a lonely Friday night

    *sobs quietly over ice cream*

    I guess I would have liked to see them do what the OTHER “special group” or critics did for their categories. I’m talking about the Alliance of Female Journalists. They had the normal categories, but then they had specific categories for women.

    I say “I guess” because the Alliance seemed to have wayyy to many categories.

  11. There are ways to tell a story about atrocities such as war, the holocaust, and here, slavery. Its not liking the subject as much as appreciating how it is dealt with. 12 Years was masterful in this regard as was Schindlers List , The Pianist and United 93. It is always easier to relate to something more pleasant, but we humans like to torture each other and this is a sad but realistic part of life.

  12. SallyinChicago

    BTW, I can’t figure out if it seems right or wrong for African-Americans to like 12 Years a Slave. If I were black, I’m not sure I would necessarily want to see a movie about slavery. Especially the brutality in it.
    ^^
    You bring up something interesting. Such a great movie, but it gets almost 0 support from African Americans. Many of my Black friends & family won’t see it. The audience is about split, 50% white/black, but it would be a $100Mil boxo movie if Black people supported it.

  13. Agree with top statement. Especially if they are gonna slot a film with 58% on RT and a 59 on MC as the 3rd best film of the year. They might as well have nominated Madea’s Christmas. Pandering at it’s worst.

  14. Sean Troutman

    Karen nailed it with the way I was thinking. I tried to answer it like that when Al Robinson first asked that question but I kept digressing.

    I’m a white male and I personally loved the movie. I hadn’t seen a powerful film like it in years and it may be the best film of the decade.

    My girlfriend, who is African American, saw the film with me and she agreed it was amazing. We especially thought Lupita Nyong’o was quite good. (Maybe the best performance of the entire year?). However, she thought The Butler was a better film mostly because she could relate to the characters more than those in 12 Years. She has relatives who lived through the Civil Rights movement so I can totally understand why she’d say she felt like she knew people like the characters portrayed by Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey. Winfrey for some reason seems to be getting a lot of hate but I thought she was the best part of The Butler. I really hope she’s nominated but that’s for another conversation.

    On the other hand, my girlfriend’s cousin, an African American male, saw 12 Years a Slave but he said it was merely okay. It was more like a history lesson than a great movie according to him. He told us this before we had seen the film and I thought it was an interesting perspective, but one that my girlfriend and I ultimately disagreed with.

    I think it basically comes down to this, if the film is well made and the viewer (no matter what ethnicity) understands the gravitas of the subject but, more importantly, the masterful filmmaking, then that viewer will most likely enjoy it a lot. If the viewer (no matter what ethnicity) is your average moviegoer who does not follow the Oscars and just sees whatever looks good to them, they’ll probably like the film but it won’t be a favorite.

    Of course, everyone is going to be different so coming up with these generalizations could be completely pointless. This is just from my humble experience and opinion.

  15. Al Robinson

    I just want to say that I hope no one was confused or offended by my previous comments. I am all for equality for all, and I wish people would stop being prejudice and racist. I just meant by my previous comments that I as a white person, I feel a little “guilty” for liking 12 Years a Slave. The “guilt” comes from the (obvious) fact that for 98% of the movie, the African-Americans are in bondage (both mentally and physically). I don’t want to support a movie like that. BUT, the reason I don’t feel “guilty” about liking 12 Years a Slave is because of the fact that in the end Solomon was freed. That was a beautiful scene where he was finally able to see his family again. I felt his pain, sadness, AND happiness when I was watching that. I can support the movie because he overcame his bondage.

  16. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    “Agree with top statement. Especially if they are gonna slot a film with 58% on RT and a 59 on MC as the 3rd best film of the year. They might as well have nominated Madea’s Christmas. Pandering at it’s worst.”

    I hope you march right on over to The New York Times in a huff and point a finger in the face of Manohla Dargis and tell her she is PANDERING for naming The Counselor one of her 10 favorite movies of 2013. The Counselor only got a 50 on metacritic so Dargis must be full of some sort of agenda shit if she dares to like a movie more than half of her colleagues hated.

    Before you head off to scoff at Manokla Dargis you should take a moment to sneer at me for having my own mind, my own taste. Because I will have The Counselor in my top 12 or maybe top 10 too. Or perhaps white folks are allowed the priviledge of letting any movie affect us and we’re free to make lists showing the wide variety of our unique tastes.

    Meanwhile if a black critic dares to state publicly that he likes any more than the 3 white-certified black movies then that black critic must be a sneak, a cheat, or a liar or unreliable, right?

    By the way, Inglorious Basterds has a 62 or something on metacritic. And so does Middle of Nowhere (#6 on my top 10 last year), so consider the possibility that ministering the gospel of metacritic is one of the dumbest sermons any true movielover can preach.

  17. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    “If I were black, I’m not sure I would necessarily want to see a movie about slavery. Especially the brutality in it.
    ^^ You bring up something interesting. Such a great movie, but it gets almost 0 support from African Americans.”

    And yet, 12 Years a Slave will sell more tickets than The Hurt Locker sold. So where were all the millions of white people who should’ve lined up to see the brutality white people inflict on other white people in Iraq? For that matter why didnt millions of Iraqis make The Hurt Locker a hit in the middle east? I will worry about what black people choose to see and not see as soon as white people stop spending 2 billion dollars to watch Iron Man 3 and The Hobbit….

    It’s not the responsibility of black people to make 12 Years a Slave a hit. It’s the responsibility of smart people, smart people of any race. There are not enough smart people of any color in America to make every smart movie a hit.

    Luckily most of us dont need to give a damn whether a movie makes $100mil. I don’t own any Hollywood studio stock, do you?

  18. Al Robinson

    Ryan,

    I can’t tell if you are remarking on my part of the comment, or SallyinChicago’s part, but I liked what you said about the white people not lining up to see The Hurt Locker.

  19. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    Oh hey, Al! I am on my mobile and inside of wordpress so I wasnt even sure who SallyinChicago was responding to.

    Anyone who has read your comments regularly will know you’re one of the nicest guys at AD and we know Sally is a kind considerate AD contributor as well. It’s me who crashing into your conversation with my arms windmilling on a rant.

    But yes, just to be clear, The Hurt Locker earned $17mil and 12 Years a Slave has already earned twice as much ($35mil). In 2010 nobody was blaming white people for not showing up to see the movie about white people at war with other white people.

  20. Al Robinson

    Okay, thanks Ryan!! LOL. :-)

    That’s very nice of you to say.

  21. Al Robinson

    But, let me just say that if I do somehow say something mean or offensive, that I am a “big boy”, I can take it. :-)

    (I feel kind of silly saying it). :-)

  22. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    I saw Django Unchained with a black friend on a date and I could soon see he was uncomfortable, could not wait to get out that theater. We saw it on opening night. The crowd was roughly 95% white. The audience reaction was like busloads of escapees from an insane asylum. Laughing hysterically at things onscreen that disgusted me. That audience scared the hell out of me. Seriously shook my faith in humanity. My friend hated the movie, and I spent days, weeks, trying to make amends for dragging him to see it. This is my own personal anecdote, and may be unique to my experience. But that weird evening should have told me that Django would do well at the Oscars. Instead, I refused to believe that its ugliness and slapstick brutality would be endorsed by any awards. I was wrong.

    I was too stunned, speechless, overwhelmed, and awestruck to cry at 12 Years a Slave. I can’t explain why I wasn’t sobbing (some in the theater were), except that I don’t usually ever get emotional in public.

    I saw The Butler in Nashville with two black friends in an audience that was probably 80% black on opening weekend. The crowd laughed and cried in all the right places. It was… joyous. I cried during Oprah’s final scene. Just spontaneously cried. The only time all year long that I have cried tears of sadness at the movies. So go ahead and laugh, everybody. Oprah made Ryan cry, lol. I don’t care. That scene got to me.

    At 12 Years a Slave a fusty old white fart in the row in front of us laughed out loud 5 different times. (Once was when Lupita’s character got smashed in the face with a cut glass brandy decanter). We waited outside the theater and I took a photo of that guy and posted his face on Twitter so everybody could see what a sick whitetrash asshole looks like.

    The audiences at movies affect my impression of mankind, but audience response does not have any effect on my feelings about the movie we’re all there to see.

  23. Al Robinson

    Wow!! Thank you so very much for that Ryan!!!

    I saw Django Unchained too in the theaters (alone unfortunately), but I had a very different kind of experience. 1 person in the theater kept on talking out loud, which made everyone else uncomfortable. He was black, and unfortunately, the kind of person that you don’t like. He kept on yammering away when everyone else was trying to listen. Finally someone yelled at him to be quiet. He told them to “shut the fuck up!”. The nerve. Ooo! That made me soo mad!!!
    My limits in people are tested, and I just keep reminding myself, that it’s not the color of the person’s skin, it’s the environment they grew up in, live in, and the kind of friends and family they have that makes them bad or good. We are all born the same: Naked and Dumb. Then we grow up…. (hopefully anyway).

    That’s my little anecdote.

  24. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    I am all for equality for all, and I wish people would stop being prejudice and racist. I just meant by my previous comments that I as a white person, I feel a little “guilty” for liking 12 Years a Slave. The “guilt” comes from the (obvious) fact that for 98% of the movie, the African-Americans are in bondage (both mentally and physically).

    Al, Al. No need to explain. Solomon Northup wrote his memoir for us to read. He didn’t write it to be “entertainment” and he would not have expected people to “enjoy” his story — but he would appreciate knowing that millions of people have interest in his life and would be gratified to know we simply respect his resilience.

    But we can enjoy and admire and respect the talents of writers and filmmakers without worrying about how shallow people might wonder how we can possibly want to watch a movie that shows such harsh realities.

    We don’t “like” watching Black Swan or Sunset Blvd or A Streetcar named Desire because we enjoy seeing mental deterioration. We just admire the astonishing work of the writers and actresses who show us what mental illness is like — so we can feel the terrible mix of horror and sympathy. And those are fictional examples!

    One of my favorite war movies is Gallipoli but I never worry that anybody would think I like watching young men get slaughtered. That movie does not even have a happy ending for me to find a shred of uplifting redemption. But I can still admire the bravery of those boys — as well as admire the unflinching talent of the filmmakers who told me a story I had never before heard.

  25. Al Robinson

    Ryan, you have a way of putting things that just make so much sense.

    That is so true. :-)

    I liked Saving Private Ryan, but I don’t like war or killing. I liked The Silence of the Lambs, but I don’t like serial killers. I liked 12 Years a Slave, but I don’t like racists.

    Thanks for reminding me of that Ryan. :-)

  26. At 12 Years a Slave a fusty old white fart in the row in front of us laughed out loud 5 different times. (Once was when Lupita’s character got smashed in the face with a cut glass brandy decanter).

    The way that scene was shot…it seemed awfully out of place compared to the rest of the film.

    I hope you march right on over to The New York Times in a huff and point a finger in the face of Manohla Dargis and tell her she is PANDERING for naming The Counselor one of her 10 favorite movies of 2013. The Counselor only got a 50 on metacritic so Dargis must be full of some sort of agenda shit if she dares to like a movie more than half of her colleagues hated.

    Apples and Oranges. Manhola Dargis is only speaking for Manhola Dargis. Manhola Dargis can’t push an agenda because she can only speak for herself. African American Film Critics Group is speaking for all African American Film Critics. That would be like saying oh how about Peter Travers giving a good review for a movie is the equivalent of a film winning Best Picture at New York Film Critics. Obviously one has a little less weight then the other….I don’t believe I had to explain all that…..

  27. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    “Manhola Dargis is only speaking for Manhola Dargis.”

    Every voter in every awards body speaks for herself and himself. They ALL vote with their individual tastes and the choices shared by the majority are the winners. Part of the reason we see differences in choices among various awards groups is because the Background of the Individual Critics varies from city to city, state to state. It’s no coincidence that the Chicago and St Louis critics most often match my own taste. I share their background. It’s no accident so many of us find validation with the San Francisco critics — so many of us share San Francisco attitudes and values. All these mythical “agenda” fears are not borne out by the reports of group conflict and dissent we hear from individual critics every single year. Critics do conspire to cook up agendas.

    “African American Film Critics Group is speaking for all African American Film Critics…I don’t believe I had to explain all that…..”

    Ridiculous. Ridiculous. African American Critics Group speak for all African American Critics?? Is that the same as how American voters who elect Obama speak for ALL American voters? Is that the same as how American voters who elected Bush speak for ALL American voters? Ridiculous. Do you seriously think ALL the African American critics in America agree on all 10 of these Top 10 films. I wish I could lock you in a room with Armond White for a week. I don’t believe I had to explain all that…..

  28. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    Please explain to me the “agenda” of the LA film critics who in your eyes speak for every critic in LA when they all conspire to have James Franco tie with Jared Leto for their supporting actor prize? Is the LA film critic conspiracy trying to plant the insiduous suggestion that transexuals in LA are equivalent to maniac drug dealers?

    ….Or maybe.. MAYBE… a lot of the LA critics just got sucked in by Franco’s performance and a lot of them (the same number) got sucked in by Jared Leto.

    While youre explaining this LA film critic illuminati agenda to me, go take a look at the metacritic score for Spring Breakers.

  29. Christophe

    OT: according to Nikki Finke, American Hustle is having a potentially record-breaking debut in limited release, whereas Saving Mr. Banks is bombing, further damaging its Oscar chances (it needs public support badly after a so-so run with critics and precursor awards).

    https://mobile.twitter.com/NikkiFinke

    Why do the films I support always fail? And those I badmouth always succeed beyond expectations?

  30. JPNS Viewer

    Merci for the updates, Christophe, mon ami.

    I know you most likely didn’t mean every word about the lament thus fortunately so; au contraire, perhaps just a phase of discerning the pathos of your movie-going life, philosophically or so. But I wish you could break the movie jinx in no time [though not at the cost of American Hustle, and my lovely JLAW xD].

    (Sidenote: I’ve got a feeling, Finke is probably awaiting the end of some sort of her temporary non-compete clause or so; I mean, it looks as if she so much wanted to do something, and seemingly could have done otherwise but somehow just kept to herself for now save for those Twitter gimmicks [some of which, due respect, I thoroughly enjoyed reading in case […] no better thing to do with my time] . . . . Well, I might be reading too much into it.)

    Re that film with poetic allurement to its title, I’m just hoping at least Ms. Thompson will make it to the final round of Best Actress nom (Oscar).

  31. There are ways to tell a story about atrocities such as war, the holocaust, and here, slavery. Its not liking the subject as much as appreciating how it is dealt with.

    Thank you, Karen.

    Too many people, including those inside AMPAS, equate appreciation with endorsement. Our culture should reflect ALL of our history, not just the raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens.

  32. JPNS Viewer

    Your Honor, directing your attention to the originally written clause: “[some of which, due respect, I #though# enjoyed reading in case […] no better thing to do with my tide]”, well, . . .
    I do remember not writing “I #thoroughly# enjoyed . . .”.

    Anyway, this is what I meant to write, grammatically correct or un-wrong:
    [some of which, due respect, I, #though#, enjoyed reading in case […] no better thing to do with my tide]
    (Am I right, or un-wrong, Lebowski.) : )

  33. SallyinChicago

    I have Saving Mr. Banks on my list to see….but it’s snowing in Chicago, 3″ of snow so I probably won’t get out this weekend, which I wanted to.

    I’m not interested in seeing American Hustle right now. Right now, I want to see hilarity light-heartedness and comedy, and Saving Mr. Banks fits my wants.
    Savings Mr. Banks is in limited release right now, so I don’t think that Boxo should be taken too seriously.
    BTW, does anybody remember the ABSCOM news upon which AH is based? I don’t.

  34. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    SallyinChicago, I think it’s ABSCAM. From what I understand, nobody needs to know anything about the real ABSCAM story before seeing American Hustle, and nobody should expect to know anything about the real ABSCAM story after seeing it.

  35. Bryce Forestieri

    consider the possibility that ministering the gospel of metacritic is one of the dumbest sermons any true movielover can preach.

    +1

    Truth!

  36. Bryce Forestieri

    At 12 Years a Slave a fusty old white fart in the row in front of us laughed out loud 5 different times. (Once was when Lupita’s character got smashed in the face with a cut glass brandy decanter).

    The way that scene was shot…it seemed awfully out of place compared to the rest of the film.

    Uh. What? Please explain. It’s one of the “best” scenes. Also the grade of difficulty is pretty high. It’s McQueen’s trademark swift change of pace all over. Saw 12 YEARS 3 times and was astonished at how it never lost an iota of power. The editing uff.

  37. Wow, such a glorious thread!

    I’m a mixed boy, and I loved 12 Years. Went by myself and an older white lady sat next to me and we cried together. Once it was over, she turned to me and said “Thank you for haring this experience with me.” And that’s what it was – an experience, a journey. Not entertainment. Not all films are entertainment.

    I didn’t want to watch The Butler in public. That film is set in the time that created my father and he’s a hardened, racist Creole. I have personal wounds that I won’t pick in public, though I am itching to see that film. Similar to why I won’t watch Fruitvale in public or with friends. I learned my lesson with Crash – as over-appreciated as it may seem these days, it struck an unhealthy chord with me in theatres. I’m sorry, but that was my reality. That is the world that sent my brother to prison for twenty years for killing the man who was trying to kill my sister. That is the world that still has my white friends determined to crack racist jokes to show in some sick, twisted way that “we’re cool.”

    Ryan, you’re a better man than me. I would’ve confronted chuckles. And I probably would’ve walked out of Django (I refused to watch it for all the reasons you ended up not liking it).

  38. Ryan, I knew you weren’t a fan of Dhango Unchained (I was) but reading what you wrote about the experience and being with your friend really gave me pause. Don’t take this lightly when I say it’s one of the more profound things I’ve ready from you all year. It really moved me how one man’s laughter is another’s pain/embarrassment. Well put, my friend.

  39. First trailer for Chris Nolan’s Interstellar here:!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=827FNDpQWrQ

  40. Official teaser for Nolan’s Interstellar with Matthew McCaunaghey:)))))))

    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=nyc6RJEEe0U&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3Dnyc6RJEEe0U

  41. Bryce Forestieri

    Kane, Ryan

    Just to add a different experience. The first time I saw DJANGO, it was with a predominantly African American audience, I’d say anywhere between 80-90%, and the room was laughter after laughter (like LOUD). It was packed and the atmosphere was as intoxicating as anything I’ve experienced at a multiplex. In fact they were more in it for most of the jokes than any of the other audiences with whom I saw it later times, and they got all the humor (or whatever Tarantino intended as humor). I subsequently saw the film two more times with more mixed audiences, safe to say they were predominantly white, and while yeah it was pretty much a lot laughter and some chuckling, but nothing near as “hysterical” as that first viewing. In fact I’m pretty sure people were very uncomfortable when the white guy was reading from the bible as he was about to whip that girl. But back to that first time, I’m sure there were some black people who were offended and/or uncomfortable, but they were clearly a minority. Of course this proves nothing, but all I can say is that it was one of the best theater experiences I’ve had in my lifetime, that first viewing of DJANGO UNCHAINED. The definition of riot.

  42. Unlikely hood

    Ryan thanks for the look inside you.

    Months ago, someone commented that McQueen’s style in 12YAS is more Haneke than Spielberg. Sasha loved that comment and heartily agreed. After I saw the film, I wondered why. It’s not particularly avant-garde, I thought.

    This thread reminds me why Sasha and that commenter were right. McQueen may have eschewed some of his tricks from Hunger and Shame, but he’s 100% more committed to motifs of being frozen than, say, “Frozen.” Repeated shots of still, bird less trees. Repeated shots of a group of slaves waiting for orders. The famous hanging. The narrative in general – and for audiences weaned on a 3 act structure (and the triumphalism of the last 3 BP winners), it’s a little hard to love.

    Spielberg heard about a mosquito trapped in Amber and made a movie about dinosaur chases. McQueen focuses on the trapping. He has certainly made a great movie, but only for audiences who are ready for form to match content – audiences like Haneke’s.

  43. Bryce Forestieri

    I think it’s more pure McQueen intercut by less than competent John Ridley episodes. The hanging of Solomon is pure McQueen, the lynching Solomon encounters as he first feels compelled to escape is pure History Channel insert by John Ridley. McQueen could have kept parts like this but gone OK we’re going to take our time with this instead of just getting this facts over with.

  44. Bryce Forestieri

    I disagree with this being similar to HANEKE’s style at all. If anything SHAME is the most Hanekian film from McQueen. The film is -among other things- about past secrets/events we’ll never know, and how they are (or could be) responsible of the evens show the segment (i.e. film) of the lives of those characters. You could argue this is narrative similarities and not style, but yeah we could.

  45. Bryce Forestieri

    Am I the only one who thinks 12 YEARS A SLAVE could perfectly be 30 minutes longer? I wish it were. I want see more how patsy spent her days. The scene where she’s making the dolls is perfection, and yeah, if that required to present more of the harsh stuff so be it.

  46. Hi, Al and others,

    Really, there is no great harm in groups with a more narrow focus to single out films that fall within that focus. In fact, sometimes it is intriguing and enlightening to see which films get mentioned that don’t fall into what would seem to be that focus. And certainly the list here is a pretty decent “best” list by anybody’s standards.

    A fascinating year for movies. Here’s some of my more recent reflections on one of the major contenders, the one at the top of the list above: http://www.hollowsquarepress.com/4/post/2013/12/3-great-films.html

    – Jonathan

  47. Unlikely hood

    Thanks for thoughts Bryce – you make good points.

    I saw Borat opening weekend with a 20-year-old woman from Kazakhstan. She LOVED it, was laughing the whole time. Proves nothing, but these stories remind me of that.

  48. SallyinChicago

    I didn’t want to watch The Butler in public. That film is set in the time that created my father and he’s a hardened, racist Creole. I have personal wounds that I won’t pick in public,

    ^^ The Butler makes the South look worse than what it is today.

  49. SallyinChicago

    I think it’s more pure McQueen intercut by less than competent John Ridley episodes. The hanging of Solomon is pure McQueen, the lynching Solomon encounters as he first feels compelled to escape is pure History Channel insert by John Ridley. McQueen could have kept parts like this but gone OK we’re going to take our time with this instead of just getting this facts over with.
    ^^
    Disagree. This was taken from the book, which I read and suggest you all read. The movie is almost scene by scene from the book. There is some deviation but not much. Also — McQueen consulted with Henry Louis Gates on everything about slavery.

  50. “You bring up something interesting. Such a great movie, but it gets almost 0 support from African Americans. Many of my Black friends & family won’t see it. The audience is about split, 50% white/black, but it would be a $100Mil boxo movie if Black people supported it.”

    This is an untrue statement. African American’s have been supporting 12 Years A Slave. White people make up 47 percent of the audience seeing 12 Years A Slave according to this article not 99.9 percent which your statement suggest. I have not heard a single african american say they wouldn’t see the film. I have only heard extremely positive and passionate support. Black people make up only 13 percent of the population so if 50 percent of the audience is black it means not enough white people are supporting it either. Lets get one thing straight. 12 Years A Slave and The Butler are not “Black films”, they are American Films.

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/12-years-a-slave-whites-657370

Leave a Comment

Warning: Assholes get their comments deleted