Oscar History

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Dec 18 2014

Boyhood Trophies.Nightcrawler Sweeps.Plus: A Bunch of Oscar Chart Updates

Pro Boyhood.Meh on Gone GirlAs you have undoubtedly heard by now even President Barack Obama has boarded theBoyhoodtrain,declaring it the best of the year...that he has seen (it might surprise you to hear that presidents don't have a lot of time for moviegoing).FLOTUS,who helped hand out the Oscar for Best Picture toArgoif you'll recall,offers up no"Best"opinion to People Magazinebut randomly shares that she didn't thinkGone Girlwas all that and preferred the book.

Where were we?Oh yes.Regional critics groups are feeling a tiny bit friskier than usual.No,they really are.Oh sure there isa lotof hive mind action happening (Boyhood,Arquette,J.K.,Citizen Fouretcetera) but it's not quite as lockstep as it has been in recent years.

Since we last spoke a few more cities have weighed in and it's semi-interesting at least to see a range of Best Actress choices (Reese & Rosamund) and how about San Diego's total unblinking obsession withNightcrawler?

Lou Bloom must have given them the hard sell.Lou Bloom gotthatjob.[More...]

Established in 1996,slightly before the glut in critics organizations happened they've been a bit hard to pin down in terms of their taste often going for unexpected choices like Winters Bone  or Ghost World or...um...King Kong as well as the usual Best Picture frontrunners that all critics groups succumb to semi-regularly.Nightcrawleris their most-winning film of all time with 7 prizes.Can you believe it?

DirectorDan Gilroy,Nightcrawler
ActressMarion Cotillard,Two Days One Night
ActorJake Gyllenhaal,Nightcrawler
Supporting ActressRene Russo,Nightcrawler
Supporting ActorMark Ruffalo,Foxcatcher
Adapted ScreenplayGone Girl
Original ScreenplayNightcrawler
Animated FeatureThe Boxtrolls
DocumentaryCitizen Four
EditingEdge of Tomorrow
Production DesignGrand Budapest Hotel
Foreign FilmForce Majeure
Body of WorkWillem Dafoe forThe Fault in Our Stars / The Grand Budapest Hotel / John Wick / A Most Wanted Man / Nymphomaniac Vol.II

Established in 2000 Phoenix tends to get stuck in weird ruts.They gave ALL of their best picture prizes to the Lord of the Rings trilogy in their day and for the past seven years with an Inglourious Basterds exception they've given their best picture prize to the total Oscar frontrunner.But this year Birdman,which could well win Best Picture but is no sure thing like the others.

DirectorAlejandro Inarritu,Birdman
ActressRosamund Pike,Gone Girl
ActorMichael Keaton,Birdman
Supporting ActressKeira Knightley,Imitation Game
Supporting ActorJK Simmons,Whiplash
Youth Performance MaleJaden Leiberer St Vincent
Youth Performance FemaleLilla Crawford,Into the Woods
Original ScoreBirdman
Production DesignGrand Budapest HOtel
Costume DesignGrand Budapest Hotel
Visual EffectInterstellar
StuntsEdge of Tomrorrow
BreakthroughPerformancceOn CameraRosamund Pike,Gone Girl
Breakthrough Performance Behind CameraDan Gilroy,Nightcrawler
Original Song"Everything is Awesome,"The LEGO Movie
Original ScreenplayGrand Budapest Hotel
Adapted ScreenplayGone Girl
Animated FeatureThe LEGO Movie
Family FilmInto the Woods
Foreign FilmIda
DocumentaryI'll Be Me

You know that Texas critics branch have to vote for Boyhood.It's in their bylaws.I kid I kid.I am partial to films about New York City and Detroit myself.Especially when they ring true.

Their top 10 went like so...

  1. Boyhood
  2. Whiplash
  3. Grand Budapest Hotel
  4. Birdman
  5. Snowpiercer
  6. Nightcrawler
  7. Selma
  8. The Imitation Game
  9. [TIE] Inherent Vice & Gone Girl

DirectorRichard Linklater,Boyhood
ActressRosamund Pike,Gone Girl
ActorJake Gyllenhaal,Nightcrawler
Supporting ActressPatricia Arquette,Boyhood
Supporting ActorJK Simmons,Whiplash
Adapted ScreenplayGone Girl
Original ScreenplayNightcrawler
Animated FeatureThe LEGO Movie
DocumentaryCitizen Four
Foreign FilmForce Majeure
First FilmDan Gilroy,Nightcrawler
Breakthrough ArtistJennifer Kent,The Babadook
Best Austin FilmBoyhood
Special Honorary AwardGary Poulter for his performance in Joe

Formed in 2007.I was amused to see thatone of the membersof my home away from home (I grew up in Detroit) listed the best supporting actress winner as Patricia's eldest sis "Rosanna Arquette".I'm sure Rosanna wouldn't mind a similar revival and,hell,she probably deserves one.At her best she was a very memorable screen presence.There was even a top 10 pop hit about her,people!

DirectorRichard Linklater,Boyhood
ActressRosamund Pike,Gone Girl
ActorMichael Keaton,Birdman
Supporting ActressPatricia Arquette,Boyhood
Supporting ActorJK Simmons,Whiplash
DocumentaryCitizen Four
Breakthrough AwardDamien Chazelle,Whiplash

This critical organization handed out its first Best Picture prize toMississippi Burningfor 1988.But they immediately moved to their still-in-use format of a nomination round first in whichDo The Right Thingtrumped and interesting array of competitors - far more interesting than the Oscar lineup sharing only one film (Born on the Fourth of July).Their nominations after that were more Oscar in synch.In fact in their past decade of awardage only 8 of their 50 Best Picture nominees,haven't been similarly honored by Oscar though that number will probably jump to 9 of 50 sinceUnder the Skinwas a top nominee for them this year.We used to love the nomination round with Chicago,which was idiosyncratic to them for a long time,but now that 60%+ of the tiny critics organizations do it it feels like overkill.Especially with so much Oscar overlap.

It's also the land ofNick&Tim!So we love the Windy City.Though you cannot hold them responsible for these prizes.I'm just saying they live there.Miss you guys!

DirectorRichard Linklater,Boyhood
ActressJulianne Moore,Still Alice
ActorMichael Keaton,Birdman
Supporting ActressPatricia Arquette,Boyhood
Supporting ActorJK Simmons,Whiplash
Adapted ScreenplayGone Girl
Original ScreenplayGrand Budapest Hotel
Animated FeatureThe LEGO Movie
DocumentaryLife Itself
Cinematography[TIE]BirdmanandGrand Budapest Hotel
Production DesignGrand Budapest Hotel
Foreign FilmForce Majeure
ScoreUnder the Skin
Most Promising PerformerJack O'ConnellStarred Up / Unbroken
Most Promising FilmmakerDamien Chazelle,Whiplash


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Reader Comments (13)

Just saw Force Majeure and wow,what a wonderful,strange experience.Just when you think you know where it's going,it...keeps going.An interesting exploration of masculinity,relationship roles (seriously,why does the man always have to do the talking,like asking others to not eavesdrop or telling your guests that you should be going?),identity vs.perception,etc.in its way,it's just as tightly focused Ida,but also feels much bigger and more colorful.I'm not sure which I'd vote for for Foreign Film.

So much Nightcrawler love amongst the regional critics yet still very little for Russo.I knew Arquette would do well but she's basically as big of a lock as Blanchett in her category last year.Good for her but it makes the category pretty boring.

December 18,2014 | Unregistered CommenterDJDeeJay

The huge LOVE for The Lego movie continues to mystify me.I always thought it was just good when graded on a curve (i.e.when compared to the rest of the drek released in February) but nowhere near the BEST of anything of the year.The screenplay prize from New York is especially galling.

December 18,2014 | Unregistered CommenterJase

Finally!Someone else who thinks the Lego movie is thoroughly overrated!It's just soulless!They took the mind-numbingly dull formula for action films and threw a Lego theme on top of it.There's no recovery from a bad screenplay,but the animation wasn't interesting either.

December 18,2014 | Unregistered CommenterMikey67

Agree about Force Majeure.What a great screenplay!I still have Ida and The Babadook on the to-see list,but the foreign films are really something.

December 18,2014 | Unregistered Commenterzig

I think you got the wrong winners for the Phoenix Film Critics...

December 18,2014 | Unregistered CommenterRyan T.

So surprised that you think Boseman and Teller have better shots at a nomination than Fiennes does.

December 19,2014 | Unregistered CommenterAmir

Having finally caught up with Nightcrawler I really do understand why people love it so much even if it wasn't completely my tastes.But the more awards love that accrues to feels so similar to Drive in 2011.Sleek,beautiful LA at night thriller that's cooler than you'd think but still not up the academy's alley.Would love to see Renee Russo get that seemingly open spot in supporting actress....just hopefully not at the expense of Stone or Knightley.

December 19,2014 | Unregistered CommenterBigTallDrew

Ryan T -- that i did.thanks for pointing it out.Fixed.Weirdlly i cannot see where I got those from now.can't find the errant critics awards that were confusing me.(mystery)

December 19,2014 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I am hoping Jakey brings in The Russo on Oscar nom day.

December 19,2014 | Unregistered Commentermark

Nathaniel and Ryan-- Apparently Phoenix has two critics groups now: Phoenix Film Critics Society,which started giving out awards in 2000,and the Phoenix Film Critics Circle,which I have never heard of until this year.

December 19,2014 | Unregistered Commenterdoughyjunn

Doughyjunn - UGH.gets worse and worse every year.I don't wanna be a dick.But it's really starting to look like anyone can get press coverage just by slapping "film critic society"on something.It's ridiculous.Phoenix does not need two groups.Texas does not need several.Etcetera.I fear I will have to just institute a cutoff date for my coverage to make it more manageable.

if your organization is at least 12-20 years old (like,an actual history...i'll pick a number) you will be included.Anyone else: bye-bye!

December 19,2014 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

Nathaniel - I think laying down some criteria for this proliferation of critics groups would be welcome.Organizations should have a history going back 20 years at least.

Jase & Mickey - you are not the only ones who didn't enjoy "The Lego Movie"as much as everyone else,I found it way too loud,and a bit tedious.Boxtrolls was funnier.

December 19,2014 | Unregistered CommenterLadyEdith

Nathaniel- if you like movies set in a home town Detroit,have you still managed to resist seeing Only Lovers Left Alive,with its lyrical evocation of night time Detroit?

December 19,2014 | Unregistered Commenteradri

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