12 yrs a slave .. politically correct, boring

As for Brad Pitt ... he appears inexplicably as a goody two shoies liberal white guy working (I guess) as an indentured person while spouting word about the inhumanity if slavery.

As for Brad Pitt … he appears inexplicably as a goody two shoes, a liberal white guy working (I guess) as an indentured person while spouting word about the inhumanity if slavery.

The Emperor’s New Clothes Comes t0 a Slave Flick

We saw “12 Years a Slave.”  After preparing for something as hard to watch  as Schindler’s list or Roberto Benigni’s “Life Is Beautiful,” we saw a politically correct movie with flat performances and rather badly done efforts at conveying much other than the boredom slaves must have felt deprived of the rich world’s freedom.

The saddest part of the movie was less the movie than the hype about Brad Pitt’s bit part. For a moviue all about black slavery, why the fuck is he the star?

Almost as sad were the flat performance of most of the cast.  One review put this down to an effort to convey the need Chiwitel Ejiofor had as Solomon Northup, an educated and very elite free man who is captured and forced to hide his talents by acting like a step and fetchit iggerant nigger from Birth of a Nation. In the original book, a diary, Northrup  makes his living as a skilled carpenter and fiddle player. In the movie “platt” (his slave name) has no skills as a carpenter much less someone who can build a fiddle.  Instead he appears as wronged man who manages to  resigned to hell without  of the humorous  indignation shown in   Roberto Benigni’s performance as a waiter serving Nazi’s a formal dinner. Even the mandatory sex scenes of white man raping black woman come across as unconvincing sex and unconvincing acting of resignation on the part of the beautiful Lupita Nyong’o.

The movie is even PC when to comes to the role of Christianity.  Critics,  like Forrest Wickman of Slate, have written that the movie is harder on the religion that the original story in the book.  That book gave a favorable account of the author’s onetime master, William Ford adding that Ford’s circumstances “blinded [Ford] to the inherent wrong at the bottom of the system of Slavery.”   Perhaps this is true but the movie avoids the way that Christians, including slave -preachers, destroyed native religions and used Jesus’ resurrection promise to enforce the regimen of slavery. There is even a weird insertion of what appears to be a choir from some modern African Baptist church. The choir easily outnumbers the slaves we have seen so far and, as far as I could tell, no slaves are in the choir.  The singing  is beautiful but there isn’t any sense of the irony of that choir singing next to a decrepit slave cemetery  filled with  crosses.

With all due apologies to the politically correct among you, this is more a made for (broadcast) TV movie than anything else.

The extent of PC criticism was seen at the 79th annual New York Film Critics Circle Awards when CityArts editor Armond White started to heckle director Steve McQueen, the movie’s director.  McQueen had just accepted his prize He thanked the critics group for honoring him with an award previously given to John Ford and Woody Allen.   White hissed “pulease.”

White must have been drunk when he went on to blurt  from his table,  “You’re an embarrassing doorman and garbage man, “F—you. Kiss my ass.”

McQueen either didn’t hear the comments or pretended not to.

More on TA about slaves



0 Comments Add Yours ↓

  1. Roger Rabbit #

    The best thing to do with a bad movie is not watch it.

  2. theaveeditor #

    Well, that is hard to do if you do not know it is bad before you see it!