Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Utah & Phoenix Film Critics: 127 Inceptions For the King

It's so cute that film critics circles are so interested in "their own" as it were. Boston is always accused of rallying behind Boston-set films (in their defense they often have many of them to choose from) and a few days back Utah, where 127 Hours takes place, really handed that film some water in its moment of need. Not that the Academy voters are actively debating Utah's choices before filling out their ballots this week... they're more likely to be swayed by James Franco's grandma (see video after the jump).

But given that 127 Hours has been slipping down a thin rocky crevice away from sunny awards heat (AWKWARD METAPHOR ALERT) it'll take every honor it can get. Will AMPAS go for it or do we have another Into the Wild (2007) on our hands i.e. lots of preseason heat, little to show for it on Oscar nom morn?

The prizes from Utah and Phoenix.

Utah Film Critics
Best Picture (tie) 127 Hours and The Social Network
Best Director (tie) Christopher Nolan for Inception and David Fincher for The Social Network
Best Actor James Franco in 127 Hours
Best Actress Natalie Portman in Black Swan
Best Supporting Actor Christian Bale in The Fighter
Best Supporting Actress Jacki Weaver in Animal Kingdom
Best Screenplay Aaron Sorkin in The Social Network
Best Cinematography Enrique Chediak and Anthony Dod Mantle for 127 Hours
Best Documentary Catfish
Best Foreign Feature (tie) Micmacs and A Prophet
Best Animated Feature Toy Story 3
Meanwhile, Phoenix honored no films set in Arizona... though they came as close as they could with Let Me In. And they almost became the only critics group to ignore The Social Network. Instead they went 'cross the Atlantic for both of their big ones: The King's Speech and Inception.

The King's Inception: What will Cobb find inside Bertie's dream?

Phoenix Film Critics
Best Picture The King's Speech
[top ten: 127 Hours, Inception, Never Let Me Go, Shutter Island, The Kids Are All Right, The King's Speech, The Social Network, True Grit, Toy Story 3, Winter's Bone]
Best Director Christopher Nolan for Inception
Best Actor Colin Firth in The King's Speech
Best Actress Natalie Portman in Black Swan
Best Supporting Actor Christian Bale in The Fighter
Best Supporting Actress Melissa Leo in The Fighter
Breakthru Performance (on camera) Chloe Moretz in Kick-Ass
Breathru Performance (off camera) Debra Granik for Winter's Bone
Best Youth Performance (Male) Kodi Smit-McPhee in Let Me In
Best Youth Performance (Female) Hailee Steinfeld in True Grit
Best Screenplay (Original) Inception
Best Screenplay (Adapted) The Social Network
Best Live Action Family Film Eyesore in Wonderland
Overlooked Film of the Year Never Let Me Go
Best Original Song "You Haven't Seen the Last of Me" Burlesque
Best Cinematography Roger Deakins for True Grit
Best Score Hans Zimmer for Inception
Best Editing Inception
Best Art Direction Inception
Best Visual Effects Inception
Best Stunts Inception
Best Costume Design Eyesore in Wonderland
Best Documentary Restrepo
Best Foreign Feature Biutiful
Best Animated Feature Toy Story 3
  • Remind me to never move to Phoenix. You know why.
  • Okay. Normally I don't take well to those annual gripes that go something like "if this movie didn't have the best ____, how is it the best picture? yadda yadda", ignorant as they sometimes are to the fact that voters are supposed to be voting on different criteria for each category. But seriously. How do they explain this one? Inception has a better screenplay and better direction than The King's Speech and it's "best" at just about everything (it won 7 categories) but it still loses Best Picture to The King's Speech? I guess Colin Firth's performance is Best Everything in order to lift the Speech up out of reach of Inception's dream invaders.


    Andrew K. said...

    Come on, Nathaniel...your hatred aside didn't you like the costumes in Alice in Wonderland? I think Colleen sort of outdid herself, and that's saying something.

    (For some reason I keep getting the feeling that True Grit will be the Into the Wild of this year.)

    mikhael t said...

    That’s what I always wonder. A film wins more than the one which takes the Best Picture price. It did happen in Oscar history, right?

    Ryan T. said...

    Just nice to see other films other than The Social Network get some Best Picture wins. I think by my count that's four films (Winter's Bone, Black Swan, 127 Hours, and The King's Speech) not by David Fincher to get Best Pic wins. Man, not even Hurt Locker dominated the critics this much.

    Michael said...

    Is Natalie peaking too early?

    Anonymous said...

    The alternative for Natalie is to...not peak at all.

    This is when the critics' awards are given out: you either take them now or you don't take them at all.

    Simon said...

    If it's based off a true story, it isn't very original, now is it?

    Please be in charge of packaging AiW. I like your title so much better.

    NATHANIEL R said...

    andrew -- i didn't love the costumes either, no. Just too busy. everything was so busy and I think you have to, as an artist, self edit. Nobody on the team was doing that. Some individual costumes were great though sure.

    mikhael t -- it has happened yes.

    ryan t -- didn't it? hwo quickly i forget the previous year.

    Michael -- we'll see. her biggest problem right now is not Bening but overkill. Nominations are not even out adn she's just everywhere (and with 4 films coming out next year plus the pregnancy and the wedding and so on... that's like ALL NATALIE. ALL THE TIME.

    Ryan T. said...

    Yup. I think in the end Up in the Air and Hurt Locker got roughly the same amount of Best Picture wins from the critics. Of course Hurt Locker trounced at the guilds and its director was dominating everything in sight similar to what Fincher is doing now, but even more so. Though UNLIKE Hurt Locker which got ONE measly critic win for its screenplay, Sorkin is sweeping everywhere and is a lock for the Oscar win. It's like Slumdog Millionaire, but even more dominant (to date at least).

    Ryan said...

    Unless the PGA/ DGA really shake things up, i'm getting the impression its down to TRUE GRIT vs. 127 HOURS vs. THE TOWN for the final 2 slots... and unless the PGA/ DGA really shake things up, i think Affleck's crime drama will ultimatly be left out.

    i guess the real question is will Boyle make the cut?

    Bryan said...

    The Natalie Portman dominance is quite interesting.

    @Nathaniel-- Do you see the Best Actress race opening up a bit, or not? I can't help but feel like we're on the cusp of a backlash for Natalie due to the deafening buzz and overexposure. It seems too tied up, too early.

    NATHANIEL R said...

    bryan -- maybe it's really hard to say. sometimes uber constant dominance pays off (helen mirren, the queen) and it seems to me, though i'm totally willing to be wrong, that that's getting worse in the past decade. as in people actually LIKE to agree with everyone else rather than staking their own claims ;)