National Society of Film Critics winners

For the films of 2012
The Original BJ
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Re: National Society of Film Critics winners

Postby The Original BJ » Sun Jan 06, 2013 1:45 am

Some additional thoughts before this whole topic becomes moot on Thursday:

I don't know that, even in a horrendously weak year, Denis Lavant would have ever had a prayer. That movie is just so much weirder than anything the Academy ever goes for. Of the foreign candidates, Trintignant might have had a shot in a less crowded field -- and, I guess he could still be a shockeroo nominee -- but I just have a hard time seeing him fall when there are so many Hollywood candidates who'd be, in a lot of years, dead-certain nominees.

What Washington really has going for him, I think, is that he was in a big-budget, wide-release adult drama that became an audience hit, i.e. the kind of movie Hollywood would be happy to have many more of. Also, I think the performance is full of quite a bit of dramatic, ACTING fireworks -- only Phoenix and Day-Lewis top him in this kind of intensity. The question is whether the fact that Washington is basically the movie's sole pillar of achievement will help him, because he's galvanizing his movie's attention, or hurt him, because it isn't really a major factor in other races.

I think OscarGuy laid out pretty extensively Cooper's weaknesses.

I was thinking today that The Sessions really never caught on the way it seemed like it might. It hasn't done especially well at the box office, didn't win anyone any major critics' prize, and even the script hasn't shown up in precursors. Hawkes is strong in his role -- though not, in my opinion, very dominant -- but if people are making the argument that The Master isn't that well-liked, I don't know you can say that The Sessions is anything beloved. In fact, given how much more accessible it is, one would think it would have been quite a bit stronger.

As for Jackman, I want to pose the opposite point of view on a thought I had earlier in the season: is Jackman really ADORED by Hollywood to the extent that is nomination is a slam-dunk regardless of performance? By all accounts, he's an incredibly nice guy, but if an actor playing Valjean sang the high notes the way he does on a Broadway stage, he'd be laughed out of town, not showered with awards. I'm just not sure how much to believe the Internet chatter about how voters can't wait to celebrate him, when the performance is so much less impressive (at least according to me) than his competition.

A good friend of mine the other day argued that Oscar's Best Actor lineup is very likely to just repeat the SAG list, and though it certainly COULD, I'm just not ready to take the position that Phoenix's one precursor miss has completely knocked out such an otherwise strong candidate. The Master really does seem like the kind of movie that could get a good handful of nominations, but could also be pretty easily absent from many of the categories in which it might contend, so it's hard to know where the Academy's chips will fall for this one.

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Re: National Society of Film Critics winners

Postby Sabin » Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:45 pm

Before I had seen Flight, I thought that Denzel Washington would get nominated for a Golden Globe, miss out on a SAG nomination, and ultimately would get edged out of an Oscar nomination. Now that I have seen him in Flight, I still would make the exact same prediction. Big star turn in a successful Hollywood production receiving strong reviews -- edged out by holiday fare? Happens a lot.
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Re: National Society of Film Critics winners

Postby Mister Tee » Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:27 pm

I'd just begun composing a response, and was immediately prompted that something new had been posted -- which turned out to be BJ saying damn near everything I was about to say.

I would add, to Okri/flipp's question about Lavant, that, while the category isn't remotely locked, he's probably locked OUT -- someone as obscure as he, from an as off-the-beam project, would need substantially more of a critics' push to qualify.

It's kind of amazing that Denzel feels like the second safest for best actor, given that you can't really imagine many putting him down as first choice. Cooper, Phoenix and Hawkes have all won a prize or two from critics' groups, even if just one of the minor ones. Denzel's won nothing, yet we all assume he's etched in stone. Is it just that the others have the disadvantages BJ lists, and we see Denzel's lack of obvious point of disqualification as his strongest argument?

Again without seeing the film: in a world where people had to truly earn nominations, Jackman wouldn't even be on the horizon; he got nothing close to strong reviews (even compared to those of his co-stars Hathaway and Redmayne). He and the whole Miserables crew seem to be kept aloft mainly by the idea that they were built as an Oscar movie, dammit, and that's what they're going to be whatever anyone says.

No, dws, I haven't seen Lincoln. You can take for granted this year that, unless I say otherwise, if it's not in DVD, I haven't partaken. I was simply going by the reviews Day-Lewis got for Lincoln, which didn't seem to me as enthusiastic as those he got for his previous Oscar winners, nor as strong as those Phoenix received this year. I knew there was an Internet "How can he not win?" buzz, but I didn't hear the same from critics, and I'm surprised they've come out so nearly uniformly.

Okri, I'd suggest the low vote totals in supporting actor may just mean there were alot of candidates drawing support -- as we've discusssed here before, there are close to a dozen whose reviews have been strong enough to merit mention. I might point out the best picture field also features lower totals (esp. compared to actor and actress), and I don't think that indicates low levels of admiration for Amour or The Master.

The Original BJ
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Re: National Society of Film Critics winners

Postby The Original BJ » Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:01 pm

Okri wrote:Is actor really that locked in? I mean, after Day-Lewis and Washington, there are four really strong candidates for those three spots (Cooper, Jackman, Phoenix, Hawkes) and a couple darkhorses (Tringniant, Gere).


I think Best Actor is just unbelievably tight, and I don't view anyone as totally locked but Day-Lewis. I would rank Washington probably running second at this point, but I think he's vulnerable only because his movie isn't really being widely talked about for other nominations like the other films are. I think Cooper is vulnerable because of the fact that comedy candidates can often get squeezed out of competitive fields (a la Giamatti) AND he's seen as less "serious" an actor than the others. I think Hawkes is vulnerable because his film has made far less than the others at the box office, and because that movie has underperformed precursor-wise. And Joaquin Phoenix -- my personal favorite -- is, of course, vulnerable due to the more difficult nature of his movie (and maybe a bad personal reputation.)

Hugh Jackman is vulnerable because he's completely in over his head singing his role, and in a movie that I pray enough Academy voters found as disastrous as I did, so that he'll be the one booted off the lineup instead of given an A for effort.

But knowing the Academy, it's Jackman in, Phoenix out, The Original BJ thwarted yet again!

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Re: National Society of Film Critics winners

Postby Okri » Sat Jan 05, 2013 8:33 pm

Is actor really that locked in? I mean, after Day-Lewis and Washington, there are four really strong candidates for those three spots (Cooper, Jackman, Phoenix, Hawkes) and a couple darkhorses (Tringniant, Gere). Lavant, I think, needed more of a push from the critics. I'm disappointing Holy Motors couldn't snag a directing prize or anything more than a runner-up award here/there/everywhere. But really, any combination of these men wouldn't surprise me too much.

The thing that intrigues me is to see how low those vote totals are for supporting actor. Given the predictions we've been seeing, it's as if the critics cannot work up the energy to get behind anyone, really.

Ditto Adams in The Master, flipp. It's a limited role in terms of range, but she demonstrates some remarkable command. All three performances are astonishing.

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Re: National Society of Film Critics winners

Postby nightwingnova » Sat Jan 05, 2013 8:24 pm

Good to get confirmation that I should make the effort to see McConaughey in Bernie and Magic Mike.

Very surprised to see Hathaway so far behind. A little surprised to see Christoph Waltz off the list - but I did not think he was remarkable in Django.

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Re: National Society of Film Critics winners

Postby Sabin » Sat Jan 05, 2013 7:23 pm

I have not seen My Beautiful Laundrette, but I think Lincoln is the best acting he's ever done. He's never been so warm before.
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Re: National Society of Film Critics winners

Postby dws1982 » Sat Jan 05, 2013 4:41 pm

Mister Tee wrote:Also, I clearly underestimated Day-Lewis this season. My impression from the reviews was that he was not apt to sweep as he did for My Left Foot or There Wil Be Blood; yet, he took both New York and National, and came close in LA as well.

The thing that helped is that it's so different from what we're used to seeing from him. (Not sure if you've seen Lincoln or not.) It's a much smaller performance than you would expect from Day-Lewis or from any actor playing Lincoln. In the past I've never hid the fact that I'm not a fan of Day-Lewis, but of the potential nominees that I've seen, he would get my vote in a walk.

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Re: National Society of Film Critics winners

Postby flipp525 » Sat Jan 05, 2013 4:29 pm

Could Denis Lavant be considered a dark horse candidate at this point with any sort of shot or is Best Actor simply too locked up to allow his entry?

I think Amy Adams gives one of her best performances in The Master (the turnabout in her last scene is chilling). It's much more of a departure for me than her work in The Fighter supposedly was.
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National Society of Film Critics winners

Postby Mister Tee » Sat Jan 05, 2013 4:11 pm

A fairly straightforward set of choices, for this group. If there's any news, it's probably that the presence of both Amour and The Master in this year's race prevents either from gathering up all the cool-art votes and making a clear run at lone director or, in the field-of-ten, best picture. It's hard to believe there are enough such voters to propel both flms, and, divided, they may both fall.

Also, I clearly underestimated Day-Lewis this season. My impression from the reviews was that he was not apt to sweep as he did for My Left Foot or There Wil Be Blood; yet, he took both New York and National, and came close in LA as well.


BEST PICTURE
*1. Amour (Sony Classics) – 28
2. The Master – 25
3. Zero Dark Thirty – 18

BEST DIRECTOR
*1. Michael Haneke (Amour) – 27
2. Kathryn Bigelow – 24
2. Paul Thomas Anderson – 24

BEST ACTOR
*1. Daniel Day-Lewis – Lincoln – 59 (Dreamworks/Touchstone)
2. Denis Lavant – 49
2. Joaquin Phoenix – 49

BEST ACTRESS
*1. Emmanuelle Riva – Amour – 50 (Sony Classics)
2. Jennifer Lawrence - 42
3. Jessica Chastain– 32

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
*1. Matthew McConaughey – Magic Mike (Warner Bros.), Bernie (Millennium Entertainment) – 27
2. Tommy Lee Jones – 22
3. Philip Seymour Hoffman – 19

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
*1. Amy Adams – The Master (The Weinstein Co.) – 34
2. Sally Field – 23
3. Anne Hathaway – 13

BEST NONFICTION
*1. The Gatekeepers – Sony Pictures Classics – 53
2. This Is Not a Film – 45
3. Searching for Sugar Man – 23

BEST SCREENPLAY
*1. Lincoln (Dreamworks/Touchstone) – Tony Kushner – 59
2. The Master (P.T. Anderson)– 27
3. Silver Linings Playbook (David O. Russell) – 19

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
*1. Master (Mihai Malaimare, Jr. ) – 60
2. Skyfall (Roger Deakins) – 30
3. Zero Dark Thirty (Greig Fraser) – 21

EXPERIMENTAL: This Is Not a Film (Jafar Panahi)


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