THE CRITICS PART DUEX: The Los Angeles Film Critics Weigh In


The most interesting of the awards came out this week, not because they necessarily show the best judgment, but because their taste and mine are so close this year (okay, so maybe that means they are showing the best judgment). I’m talking about the Los Angeles Film Critics Association. The LAFCA probably has more influence than any other critics group (outside the Golden Globes) on the Oscars, mainly because they are in Los Angeles, so they are probably the most difficult for voters to avoid.

Best Picture is The Social Network, which should put a number of contractors to work building shelves to hold all the awards it is getting. Interesting, though, is Carlos coming in second. Not eligible for the Oscars because it was made for TV, it is one of the finest films of the year. However, again, The Social Network winning only helps ensure that it gets a nom come Oscar time. The King’s Speech is still going to win. Just deal with it.

Best Actor went to Colin Firth for The King’s Speech adding to his momentum. Second place went to Edgar Ramirez for Carlos, again one of the finest performances of the year, but again, not eligible since it was in a made for TV film. However, joy to me, Kim Hye-Ja won Best Actress for Mother; Hye-Ja will most likely win my personal Best Actress award when I get around to doing the Howies. Runner up is Jennifer Lawrence for Winter’s Bone, which should help her momentum.

Director was a tie between Olivier Assayas for Carlos and David Fincher for The Social Network. Assayas, of course, doesn’t qualify for the Tinseltown award, but this helps Fincher’s momentum. There is an outside chance the Oscar voters could split the Picture/Director award this year and Fincher could win it, but I think it’s going to be Tom Hooper for The King’s Speech, and again, just deal with it.

Neils Arestrup won Supporting Actor for The Prophet (he was on my list last year). Significantly, though, Geoffrey Rush came in second. Will Rush be able to defeat Christian Bale for The Fighter? I say yes. Jacki Weaver won Supporting Actress for Animal Kingdom, which again helps that momentum thingy. It does seem to suggest the fight at the Oscars will be between Melissa Leo and Weaver; I still believe Leo will win, but Weaver’s awards are making the contest more interesting than usual. Olivia Williams came in second for The Ghost Writer, an unusual choice, and it won’t matter a hoot come nomination time.

Best Screenplay is Aaron Sorkin for The Social Network; second is David Seidler for The King’s Speech. I think that just about sums up the winners in those two Oscar categories this year.

Also of interest, Foreign Language film is Carlos, with my favorite film of the year Mother, coming in second. Since neither were entered by their respective countries, no Oscars. But I love the movies so much, I had to mention that.

Finally, though Toy Story 3 won Best Animated film, The Illusionist received runner up, which may give it the recognition it needs to be third on the ballot.

Next: The Golden Globes

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