Monday, December 26, 2011

OFCS winners announced

1/2 UPDATE: Well, everything was coming up "Tree." So be it. Glad "A Separation" won anyway. The official release:

The Tree of Life, which led the Online Film Critics Society nominations with seven, was the big winner at the 15th Annual Online Film Critics Society Awards. The film took home the prize for Best Picture as well as trophies for Best Director (Terrence Malick), Best Supporting Actress (Jessica Chastain), Best Editing and Best Cinematography. No other film won more than one award.

The other three acting winners were Michael Fassbender winning Best Actor for his performance in Shame; Tilda Swinton's work in We Need to Talk About Kevin won the award for Best Actress; and Christopher Plummer received the Best Supporting Actor prize for his work in Beginners.

Best Picture:
The Tree of Life
Best Animated Feature:
Best Director:
Terrence Malick - The Tree of Life
Best Lead Actor:
Michael Fassbender - Shame
Best Lead Actress:
Tilda Swinton - We Need to Talk About Kevin
Best Supporting Actor:
Christopher Plummer - Beginners
Best Supporting Actress:
Jessica Chastain - The Tree of Life
Best Original Screenplay:
Midnight in Paris
Best Adapted Screenplay:
Tinker Tailor Solider Spy
Best Editing:
The Tree of Life
Best Cinematography:
The Tree of Life
Best Film Not in the English Language:
A Separation
Best Documentary:
Cave of Forgotten Dreams
Special Awards (previously announced):
To Jessica Chastain, the breakout performer of the year
To Martin Scorsese in honor of his work and dedication to the pursuit of film preservation

"A Separation" and "Hugo," two of my favorites, get something extra under the tree this year, if not as much as "The Tree of Life" (pictured). But plenty of room under the branches in what I must say is a strong slate from my group.

Here's the official release:

"The Tree of Life", Terrence Malick's exploration of suburban family life in the 1950's, received seven nominations for the 15th Annual Online Film Critics Society awards. The film was nominated for Best Picture, Best Director (Malick), Best Supporting Actor (Brad Pitt), Best Supporting Actress (Jessica Chastain), Best Original Screenplay, Best Editing and Best Cinematography.

Joining "The Tree of Life" in Best Picture are Michel Hazanavicius' "The Artist", Alexander Payne's "The Descendants", Nicolas Winding Refn's "Drive" and Martin Scorsese's "Hugo". Malick, Hazanavicius, Refn and Scorsese were joined in the Best Director race by "Melancholia" director Lars von Trier.

"Drive" was the second most nominated film picking up six mentions including the aforementioned Picture and Director as well as Best Supporting Actor (Albert Brooks), Best Adapted Screenplay, Editing and Cinematography. Brooks was nominated alongside John Hawkes in "Martha Marcy May Marlene", Nick Nolte in "Warrior", Pitt and Christopher Plummer in "Beginners". In Best Supporting Actress, the nominees were Chastain, Melissa McCarthy for "Bridesmaids", Janet McTeer for "Albert Nobbs", Carey Mulligan for "Shame" and Shailene Woodley for "The Descendants".

Woodley and Mulligan's co-stars shared nominations in the Best Actor slate, George Clooney and Michael Fassbender respectively, who were nominated alongside Jean Dujardin in "The Artist", Gary Oldman in "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" and Michael Shannon in "Take Shelter". The Best Actress category features Kirsten Dunst in "Melancholia", Elizabeth Olsen in "Martha Marcy May Marlene", Meryl Streep in "The Iron Lady", Tilda Swinton in "We Need to Talk About Kevin" and Michelle Williams for "My Week with Marilyn".

Each year, the OFCS also submits nominations for Special Achievement Awards, granted only by a majority vote of the membership. This year, the Online Film Critics have selected two individuals, Jessica Chastain and Martin Scorsese, to receive special citations.

Chastain's tremendous and quality-filled output this year has brought her instant acclaim and recognition marking one of the most stellar debuts in recent memory.

Scorsese has long been a champion of film preservation and with his love letter to the cinema this year, "Hugo", he continues to show his admiration for film history and the many pursuits to keeping those records alive."

Thursday, December 22, 2011

New York Theater News: Last of the year

The first half of the 2011-2012 Broadway season has ended, and it's been blah. Adding a little zing: the family melodrama Stick Fly and the intriguing revisal of On a Clear Day You Can See Forever, with Jessie Mueller and Harry Connick, Jr.

Popdose: Stocking stuffers

Buy yourself a merry little Christmas and stock up on some current Blu-ray and DVD releases, ranging from a set of Sabu to some choice Seijun Suzuki weirdness via Criterion. And curl up with Jennifer Connelly at her most delectable, too.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Popdose: Saying Goodbye

In which Norma Eberhardt, Tura Satana, and Ken Russell are sent on their way. You're good if you know two of those.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Winter edition of Cineaste

It's online and on sale. Online: An exclusive Charlotte Rampling interview, MOD, DVD, Blu-ray and book reviews, and festival coverage. In the magazine: Olivier Assayas, Costa-Gavras, Kelly Reichardt, and more on "The Prospects of Political Cinema Today"; interviews with Asghar Farhadi (A Separation), David Cronenberg (A Dangerous Method) and John Sayles (Amigo); and an update on manufactured-on-demand (MOD) discs by yours truly, plus my interview with Warner Archive honcho George Feltenstein. Worth the cover price of course, but why not subscribe and save?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Live Design: New plays

I have been to The Mountaintop (pictured)--and a few other Broadway and Off Broadway shows besides as the year in theater ebbs. Kind of drab, I have to say, after an exciting spring; here's hoping 12 brings it up a notch.