Spoiler Alert: 12 Years a Slave
Another episode in our “Spoiler Alert” series. This time we discuss Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave (2013). Both Curtis and I had some problems with the film which we deal with in detail in the show but make sure read below for other perspectives on the film.
Post-script: After watching the film and then recording a podcast I was reminded of Richard Fleischer’s Mandingo (1975), a film that was critically panned upon its release but with time has become regarded by both film critics and directors as a great film (Quentin Tarantino cites Mandingo as a major influence for Django Unchained (2012)). I would encourage everyone to seek out this seventies for an example of a film that deals with racial politics without relying on liberal politics for its criticisms of racism. I would encourage everyone to read Robin Wood’s essay “Mandingo: vindication of an abused masterpiece” which is a terrific analysis of that film’s sexual and racial politics and explains many of the points we tried to articulate in our podcast but with more clarity and rigor.
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