Ah, just as surely Black Friday once followed Thanksgiving Day, the year end accolades begin arriving as early as December 1. First out of the gate are the winners of the New York Film Critics Circle, and here we go:
Hooray for the native son, that is Texas based filmmaker Richard Linklater whose latest, Boyhood, may very well be the movie with the most year end buzz–not bad considering that it was released back over the summer. Linklater, whose credits include everything from micro-budgeted indie Slacker (1991), to Dazed and Confused (1993), the Before Sunrise trilogy (1994 – 2013), School of Rock (2003), and Bernie (2012), stretched himself yet again with a traditional feature film shot over a 12 year period, thereby charting the growth of child actor Ellar Coltrane who, per the IMDb, grew an incredible 27 inches during production. Linklater’s execution might be unique in that he shows his character, played by a single actor, age from 5 to 18 in the span of 165 minutes, but his vision is comparable to that of Francois Truffuat who featured actor Jean-Pierre Léaud as character Antoine Doinel in a series of films, spanning 20 years, beginning with 1959’s 400 Blows when the actor was approximately 15 years old. I have more to add, and I will later, but this is good news for Linklater fans for now. Good news for Patricia Arquette fans as well, I was beginning to think she’d never get another strong film role.
Best Picture: Boyhood
Best Actress: Marion Cotillard (The Immigrant and Two Days, One Night)
Best Actor: Timothy Spall (Mr. Turner)
Best Director: Richard Linklater (Boyhood)
Best Supporting Actress: Patricia Arquette (Boyhood)
Best Supporting Actor: J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)
Best Screenplay: Wes Anderson and Hugo Guiness
(The Grand Budapest Hotel, inspired by the works of Stefan Zweig)
Best First Film: Jennifer Kent (The Babadook)
Best Cinematography: Darius Khondji (The Immigrant)
Best Animated Film: The Lego Movie
Best Foreign Language Film: Ida (Poland)
Best Nonfiction Film: Citizenfour
Special Award: Adrienne Mancia
I’m happy for Timothy Spall, a member of Brit director Mike Leigh’s repertory company. This time, Spall takes the lead as 19th century painter J.M.W. Turner. Spall won Best Actor honors at the most recent Cannes film fest, but he has not received as much media coverage as the likes of Michael Keaton (Birdman), Eddie Redmayne (The Theory of Everything), and Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game).
^ J.K. Simmons is a regular acting demon. In Whiplash, he plays a demanding jazz conductor at a prestigious music school. Watch the trailer for but a taste. I can’t wait to see the whole thing!
New York Film Critics Circle official site: http://www.nyfcc.com/awards/