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Information

Year
2008
Runtime
96 min.
Director
Steve McQueen
Genres
Crime, Drama, Thriller, Biography
Rating *
7.5
Votes *
40,440
Checks
9,347
Favs
881
Dislikes
58
Favs/checks
9.4% (1:11)
Favs/dislikes
15:1
* View IMDb information

Top comments

  1. greenhorg's avatar

    greenhorg

    This is a movie like Citizen Kane or I Am Cuba where the director deliberately and ambitiously experiments with filmmaking choices. (e.g. very little dialogue, then an uninterrupted 20 minute cut of dialogue; main character not introduced until middle of movie, etc). Steve McQueen is one to look out for. 12 years 1 month ago
  2. the3rdman's avatar

    the3rdman

    Unflinching and unsentimental. McQueen is very good at examining the dehumanizing qualities of the prison apparatus, for both the prisoners and the warders/law enforcement officers. The contrast between the brutality of the first half of the film and the almost sanctified treatment of Sands during his hunger strike is fascinating; while the early resistance of the prisoners results in reactionary violence, the internalization of violence by the hunger-strikers upon their own bodies complicates and disturbs the cycle. Care is taken to provide every comfort for Sands as he literally wastes away. But why? The film is ultimately extremely ambiguous; a necessity, perhaps, considering the troubling subject.
    I don't think that McQueen was attempting to present a "compelling story," at least not in the narrative sense. It seems to me to be a reflection on the prison institution, ideological fervour, and their effect on the body. More horrifying than "beautiful," and, although spare, conceptually complex.
    11 years 10 months ago
  3. stexdo's avatar

    stexdo

    The best movie debut by a director of the last 10 years. I would have expected McQueen to have a Haneke-like continuation of his career but instead he went hollywood and still made two other great movies. Fassbender is stellar. 10 years 3 months ago
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In 6 official lists

  1. This movie ranks #49 in Time Out's The 100 Best British Films
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    Time Out's The 100 Best …

    49
  2. This movie ranks #78 in TSPDT's 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films
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    TSPDT's 21st Century's M…

    78
  3. This movie ranks #448 in Cahiers du Cinéma's Annual Top 10 Lists
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    Cahiers du Cinéma's Annu…

    448
  4. This movie ranks #577 in The Criterion Collection
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    The Criterion Collection

    577
  5. This movie ranks #638 in Sight & Sound's The Greatest Films of All Time
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    Sight & Sound's The Grea…

    638
  6. This movie ranks #709 in TSPDT's 1,000 Greatest Films
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    TSPDT's 1,000 Greatest F…

    709
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