ELLE reviews 12 Years A Slave

Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender and Lupita Nyong'o star

After Hunger and Shame, all eyes are on Brit director Steve McQueen's latest offering ­and you may have gathered from all the awards nominations, it's an impressive piece of work.

Chiwetel Ejiofor stars as Solomon Northup, a real-life New Yorker who was kidnapped and sold into slavery in 1841.

This gripping, challenging drama follows his fate as he is passed from a relatively kind slave master, Ford (Benedict Cumberbatch) to the despotic Edwin (Michael Fassbender).

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All the performances are fantastic but it's newcomer and ELLE interviewee Lupita Nyong'o who's the biggest discovery, putting in a sensitive and memorable turn as abused slave, Patsey.

The casting of producer Brad Pitt as Northup's potential saviour seems a bit self-congratulatory, but that's a small issue: this remains a profoundly moving and involving film that's also likely to win awards for its stunning cinematography.

12 Years A Slave is in cinemas 10 January

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