What happens when man is forced to live in subhuman conditions, is violated and his freedom taken from him? What happens when he is pushed to the limits so much so that he is forced to use his body as a weapon of political warfare? What happens to the body when it is deprived of nourishments?

Based on the events that took place in the Maze Prison’s H-Block in 1981, Hunger follows the Irish Republican soldiers who were captured, beaten and violated simply because they wanted political status and not to be treated like common criminals. After staging their “blanket” and “wash” protests and negotiating with the British government did not get them anywhere, the film slowly continues as the prisoners decide to go on a hunger strike led by Bobby Sands (played by Michael Fassbender).

Filmed in beautiful and scenic Northern Ireland, Hunger is Steve McQueen’s first feature film. Influenced by Sands’ passion, McQueen’s film tries to relay to the audience the anguish and torment both the prisoners and guards felt.

His amazing directorial skills greatly portray Sands’ last days. However, as a last single tear trickles down Sands’ face and the credits roll, the audience is left with only one question: Was it worth it?

Grade: B

Hunger releases in select theaters Dec. 5.