AND THEY’RE ROUNDING THE FIRST CORNER: New York Film Critics announce their winners


The New York Film Critics announced their awards yesterday. Though they don’t influence the Oscars a great deal, they can add to the buzz and help voters remember possible nominees they may have forgotten. But it’s hard to say that the NYFC will be doing much of that this year in the top categories (since it has now become somewhat clear, though still a little vague, that the picture, directing and acting awards are more or less decided), though there are a couple of possibilities in the other categories.

The Hurt Locker once again won best picture and director, but I still contend that the Oscar voters will go for the less in your face Up In The Air, since it’s topical and not as heavy as the last couple of winners, Slumdog Millionaire and No Country for Old Men. Best pictures genres often run in cycles and I think something a tad lighter is due to take home the gold. George Clooney won the NYFC acting award (for two movies, The Fantastic Mr. Fox and Up in the Air), but it still looks like a Jeff Bridges career achievement year. Meryl Street, Christoph Waltz and Mo’Nique won the others, which will probably mirror the Academy Awards.

The two areas where NYFC might be of help to potential nominees is that In the Loop (perhaps the best writing of the year) won for best screenplay and since there are ten nominees for screenplay at the Oscars (original and adapted), this may very well help remind the voters. It was also runner up for the Los Angeles Film Critics award. Also to be noted is the win of The White Ribbon for cinematography in both the NYFC and LAFCA, which may help translate to Oscar noms (assuming it will be eligible; I’ve been told it’s going to open the last day of the year and unless it’s played for a week in either LA or New York, it shouldn’t be eligible for anything but foreign language film).

I was also excited to see that the NYFC awarded Of Time and the City, Terence Davies wonderful portrait of his home city, Liverpool, through found footage, best non-fiction film (no longer always called documentary because too many people are expanding what the term documentary means). Also Summer Hours, the beautiful French film, won best foreign film for both NYFC and LAFCA, but since it’s not the French foreign language film entry (The Prophet is), that won’t make any difference.

Today, the Golden Globes were announced, but I have to talk to my best friend Jerry first before commenting on that. Also, Wed. or Thurs. I’ll start listing what I think are going to be the nominees, unless I suddenly find myself with time on my hands and do it earlier.

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