erik lundegaard

National Board of Review Falls in Love with 'Her'

The National Board of Review, usually the first voice in the year-end movie round-up, but usurped yesterday by NYFCC, went with Spike Jonze's “Her,” starring Joaquin Phoenix and the voice of Scarlett Johansson, as the best movie of the year.

Its picks:

  • Best Film: Her
  • Best Director: Spike Jonze, Her
  • Best Actor: Bruce Dern, Nebraska
  • Best Actress: Emma Thompson, Saving Mr. Banks
  • Best Supporting Actor: Will Forte, Nebraska
  • Best Supporting Actress: Octavia Spencer, Fruitvale Station
  • Best Original Screenplay: Joel and Ethan Coen, Inside Llewyn Davis
  • Best Adapted Screenplay: Terence Winter, The Wolf of Wall Street
  • Best Animated Feature: The Wind Rises
  • Breakthrough Performance: Michael B. Jordan, Fruitvale Station
    Breakthrough Performance: Adele Exarchopoulos, Blue is the Warmest Color
  • Best Directorial Debut: Ryan Coogler, Fruitvale Station
  • Best Foreign Language Film: The Past
  • Best Documentary: Stories We Tell
  • William K. Everson Film History Award: George Stevens, Jr.
  • Best Ensemble: Prisoners
  • Spotlight Award: Career Collaboration of Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio
  • NBR Freedom of Expression Award: Wadjda
  • Creative Innovation in Filmmaking Award: Gravity

Unlike the NYFCC list, this is mostly movies I haven't seen because they're either not out yet or haven't arrived in Seattle yet. Immediate thought: “Prisoners”??? Secondary thought: Octavia Spencer? Tertiery thought: Breakthrough performance for Michael B. Jordan? Didn't these critics watch “The Wire? Final thought: Is Forte really better than Leto in ”Dallas Buyers Club“ or Michael Fassbender in ”12 Years“?

The NBR also does a top 10 list, sans ”Her,“ and in lame alphabetical order:

Top Films
12 Years a Slave
Fruitvale Station
Inside Llewyn Davis
Lone Survivor
Saving Mr. Banks
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
The Wolf of Wall Street

First thought: ”Prisoners“? Second thought: ”Wait. 'Lone Survivor'? The thing with Marky Mark? Really?“ Third thought: Hollywood REALLY needs to do a better job of getting its better movies out a little earlier.

More interesting, but also in alphabetical order, is NBR's list of top 5 foreign-language films and top 5 docs. Good to see ”A Hijacking“ on the former; sorry ”Muscle Shoals“ isn't on the latter:

Top 5 Foreign Language Films

Beyond the Hills
The Grandmaster
A Hijacking
The Hunt

Top 5 Documentaries

20 Feet from Stardom
The Act of Killing
After Tiller
Casting By
The Square

The Board's history is a mixed bag. Counting back to 2000 from 2012, these are its best films of the year: ”Zero Dark Thirty,“ ”Hugo,“ ”The Social Network,“ ”Up in the Air,“ ”Slumdog Millionaire,“ ”No Country for Old Men,“ ”Letters from Iwo Jima,“ ”Good Night, and Good Luck,“ ”Finding Neverland,“ ”Mystic River,“ ”The Hours,“ ”Moulin Rouge,“ ”Quills." A few odd years there from 2000 to 2006.

Spike Jonze's "Her"

Hey everybody who isn't in NY or LA: another movie to possibly look forward to.

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Posted at 06:37 PM on Wed. Dec 04, 2013 in category Movies - Awards  


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