The harrowing 12 Years a Slave has all the makings of a mesmerizing period drama for the ages. The only question is whether the execution meets the potential.
The movie stars Chiwetel Ejiofor in the true story of Solomon Northup, a free man in 1800s N.Y. State, who was kidnapped and forced into slavery.
Toiling away on a plantation near New Orleans, he subsequently fought for his freedom with the help of a Canadian abolitionist, played by Brad Pitt.
Also starring Michael Fassbender, the film is drawing major Oscar buzz as it opens this weekend. Does it live up to the high expectations it sets?
Let's see what critics' 12 Years a Slave reviews are saying ...
"Sometimes you have to prepare yourself for the journey a film takes you on. So it is with 12 Years a Slave, a harrowing, unforgettable drama that doesn’t look away from the reality of slavery and, in so doing, helps us all fully, truly confront it." - The New York Daily News