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Sep 22 2015

An IndieWire TIFF Poll

We'll wrap up our TIFF coverage tomorrow with the full index of reviews for now I wanted to point you to IndieWire where they've published their"best of TIFF"critics surveyand the results are interesting but also disheartening since they remind us that US critics rush to films that are about to open rather than to films without distributors when they hit festivals. (I'll never understand this really.) They also don't seem to care about foreign language films - only one picture from their entire top collective top ten is in a foreign language (Hungary'sSon of Saul) and you have to go down into the #13 before you see them crop up with regularity.

The already wildly overrated Charlie Kaufman jointAnomalisais #1 just barely in a photofinish with the only marginally overratedSpotlight.Hee.Lots more on the actors and a distinct Oscar possibilityafter the jump...

Mark Ruffalo with the reporter he plays in SPOTLIGHT

Charlotte Rampling,no argument here,takes Best Lead performance for45 Years.StrangelyWhere to Invade Next,the new Michael Moore movie,took Best Documentary but the only thing I ever heard the whole 10 days of TIFF was "it's good i guess.it's fun"which is hardly rabid love!

But the Supporting Poll is a Mess!Mark Ruffalo inSpotlight,who I wouldn't even name in the top 5 ofSpotlight's best performances,takes the #1 spot.Don't get me wrong.I really love Mark Ruffalo.Always have.But I have to confess that since The Kids Are All Right (barringFoxcatcher) his performances have felt a little overcooked to me,a little shouty.I'm missing his former naturalism and subtlety but I could see him winning the Oscar for this.

Jennifer Jason Leigh nearly stole the top spot from him in the poll for doing the voice work of a self-esteem challenged girl inAnomalisaproving once again that male critics always go gaga for voice performances of women in movies about sadsack men who fall for them (see also Scarlett Johansson'sHer).

Even though wee Jacob Tremblay is the lead ofRoom(it's all from his perspective and he's in virtually every scene) heisa tiny little boy so he did really well in this poll and I suspect that is where A24 will campaign him and where he could actually be nominated.As we've noted with shaking fist before,Oscar voters would literally never screw over a leading man to give a little boy a lead nomination and they'll rarely even bite in supporting because MEN.WE RESPECT THEM.They'd only do that to the women if a little girl is good in her movie (see Keisha Castle Hughes & Quvhenzane Wallis and a ton of supporting nominations).But little boys do,once in a blue moon,show up in Supporting Actor.They just don't win.

In fact,a ton of the people who did well in supporting in this poll are leads including Alicia Vikander and Tom Courtenay who are each half the show in two marital dramasThe Danish Girland45 Yearsrespectively.But to be fair and if you want to split hairs and to prove I'm not always a raging psychopath about this Category Fraud Thing,I can see (vaguely) where people are coming from in regards to Tom Courtenay who is much more recessive and backgrounded than Charlotte Rampling despite it being a two-hander.Alicia Vikander on the other hand is locked in a total 50/50 duet with Redmayne so one of these cases of creative category play is far more egregious than the other!In short: Critics love Category Fraud as much as Oscar voters do.There were even supporting votes for Christopher Abbot who has top billing and plays the title character inJames White!Sadly none ofmy choices in the supporting categorydid well with the IndieWire crowd which I can only assume is because they were a) actually supporting performances and b) were given by people who were less famous than their co-stars.

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Reader Comments (16)

I saw the trailer for "Spotlight"and can't wait to see it.

September 22,2015 | Unregistered CommenterJaragon

Disappointing to me when awards bodies put leads in supporting,because I've loved the supporting categories for as long as I've loved the Oscars;亚博主页scanning those categories during my early Oscar education taught me to look beyond the stars on the screen,which is vital in learning to read movies,which is vital in moving beyond Hollywood prestige and falling for film.Young future film buffs don't really get to learn the same way I did,since supporting performance just as often means "other performance."(I give a slight,*slight* pass to putting little kids in that category,since that's a tradition as old as Patty Duke.)

But DEPRESSING when critics do it,because knowing the difference between a lead and supporting performance should be part of their job.If you don't know that,then what do you know about movies?If you don't care about character actors,then why do you really care about acting?

September 22,2015 | Unregistered CommenterMike in Canada

All that said,I'm all for watching Mark Ruffalo and Jennifer Jason Leigh win awards.

September 22,2015 | Unregistered CommenterMike in Canada

@Mike in Canada & Nathaniel,well said regarding the stupidity of critics indulging & enabling category fraud.I hope that Alicia Vikander does not get nominated for supporting,Felicity Jones at least played fair and went lead.

September 22,2015 | Unregistered CommenterLadyEdith

Ruffalo gave his best most precise performance last year in Foxcatcher.That documentary scene alone was the single most mesmerizing piece of acting I've seen in years.

September 22,2015 | Unregistered Commentercal roth

^^^ i agree with cal,although not enough shouting for the oscar [maybe this year]

September 22,2015 | Unregistered Commenterpar

But the Supporting Poll is a Mess!Mark Ruffalo in Spotlight,who I wouldn't even name in the top 5 of Spotlight's best performances,takes the #1 spot.Don't get me wrong.I really love Mark Ruffalo.Always have.But I have to confess that in the past couple of years his performances have felt a little overcooked to me,a little shouty.I'm missing his former naturalism and subtlety but I could see him winning the Oscar for this.

Is there any chance that Michael Keaton can win a make-up Oscar for this?

September 23,2015 | Unregistered CommenterRich Aunt Pennybags

The Academy needs to give Charlotte Rampling an Oscar NOM asap!!!!I'm personally outraged and offended that one of the greatest living actresses has zero nomination in her entire career......I hope the critical praise will translate into an Oscar nom......luckily will see this performance in two weeks,can't wait!!

September 23,2015 | Unregistered CommenterLars

I'm not sure how Tom Courtenay is 'supporting' in 45 Years...

September 23,2015 | Unregistered Commentergoran

I think Jamie Bell in 2000 was the last child actor who came 6th i think for Best Actor.

September 23,2015 | Unregistered CommenterMARK

goran -- which was my point of griping.i agree he's a lead.

mark -- you're probably right.

cal & par -- OMG.how could i forget FOXCATCHER.i amend what i said.everything BUT foxcatcher.he was brilliant in that.my silver medalist.

September 23,2015 | Unregistered CommenterNATHANIEL R

in 45 years most of the film is shot from Rampling's perspective.There are entire scenes where Courtenay is delivering lines and the camera stays on her and her reactions.I agree he's the co-lead,but there can be an argument made for him in supporting.

September 23,2015 | Unregistered CommenterRami

Just a quick note about this Indiwire/Criticwire festivals lists: a) it's not only American critics.I,for example,am part of it as well.Didn't participate this time though,since I wasn't able to file my results on time (while travelling back to Europe).And b) one of the reasons so few European films register in the TIFF poll: they do the same poll in Berlin,Cannes etc.,so probably a lot of critics (like myself) vote for TIFF world premieres only.And those are mostly English language films soon to be released...And 3) since by now,TIFF is known internationally mostly as "the Oscar festival",that's what the magazines/newspapers/websites want to report about.I for example was asked to cover as many potential Oscar candidates as possible in my festival reports.Doesn't leave much time for anything else...

September 23,2015 | Unregistered CommenterPatrick

One should get an Oscar for staying awake during "Foxcatcher"(yes Ruffalo was good but the movie was pretentiously dull)

September 23,2015 | Unregistered CommenterJaragon

Agreed about Ruffalo.I'm not a fan of his shouty stuff.

I'm thinking Charlotte Rampling may just happen,but not Brie Larson.I have not reason to think that given I haven't seen either movie,alas...

Most critics just want to give prizes to actors they like in movies they like whether they're in the right category or not.They're just as bad starfuckers as everyone else.

September 24,2015 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn Dunks

Agreed,Glenn Dunks,but in sadness.On the brighter side,we now have a whole big list of new movies to be excited about.

September 24,2015 | Unregistered Commentervladdy

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