erik lundegaard

BAFTAs Spread Wealth Between '12 Years,' 'Gravity' and 'American Hustle'

The British Oscars, the BAFTAs (British Academy of Film and Television Arts), had their awards ceremony tonight and spread the wealth like the socialists they are.

The winners:

  • Best Film: “12 Years a Slave”
  • Best Director: Alfonso Cuaron, “Gravity”
  • Best Actor: Chiwetel Ejiofor, “12 Years a Slave”
  • Best Actress: Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine”
  • Best Supporting Actor: Barkhad Abdi, “Captain Phillips”
  • Best Supporting Actress: Jennifer Lawrence, “American Hustle”
  • Best Original Screenplay: David O. Russell and Eric Warren Singer, “American Hustle”
  • Best Adapted Screenplay: Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope, “Philomena”
  • Best Foreign Language Film: “The Great Beauty,” Paolo Sorrentino
  • Best Documentary: “The Act of Killing,” Joshua Oppenheimer

It's not a bad list. Apparently the Oscar race, too, is between “12 Years” and “Gravity,” which is a shame since I'd prefer a battle between “Wolf of Wall Street” and “American Hustle.” I like the “Philomena” nod here, though, since I like that movie more than most Americans, who apparently had trouble with the portions. BAFTA's doc and foreign-language film are mine as well. Actor, I'd go McConaughey or DiCaprio, but no one's giving the latter much chance and the former wasn't even nominated. Supporting actor, I'd go Fassbender or Leto. But it's not a bad list. It's a good mix.

Oddly, “Gravity” won Best British Film, a whole other category, but I don't see anything particularly British about “Gravity.” It's set in outer space, stars two Americans, is directed by a Mexican. Why not “Philomena”? Or “12 Years,” which was set in America but starred mostly Brits (Ejiofor, Fassbender, Cumberbatch) and was directed by a Brit (McQueen)?

And what does this mean for the Oscars? Who knows? But the last time BAFTAs went for a best film other than the Academy's eventual best picture was in 2007 (“Atonement” vs. “No Country for Old Men”). The Brits actually had a good independent run there: “The Aviator” in 2004, “Brokeback Mountain” in 2005, “The Queen” in 2006. I prefer that list to the Academy's. Lately, though, they've been buddy-buddy.

Two weeks. Have you sent out your party invites yet? Have you received one?

12 Years a Slave

Your BAFTA winner for best actor and best film ... but not best British film. Because nothing says 'British' more than two Americans in outer space.

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Posted at 02:32 PM on Sun. Feb 16, 2014 in category Movies - Awards  


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