DC Critics Honor The Artist And Martin Scorsese

Earlier today, The Washington DC Area Film Critics Association announced their annual awards, and as usual, there are not that many surprises to be had, but there are a few choices that seemed questionable. Check out the full list below.

Best Film:
The Artist

Best Director:
Martin Scorsese (Hugo)

Best Actor:
George Clooney (The Descendants)

Best Actress:
Michelle Williams (My Week with Marilyn)

Best Supporting Actor:
Albert Brooks (Drive)

Best Supporting Actress:
Octavia Spencer (The Help)

Best Acting Ensemble:

Best Adapted Screenplay:
Alexander Payne and Nat Faxon & Jim Rash (The Descendants)

Best Original Screenplay:
Will Reiser (50/50)

Best Animated Feature:

Best Documentary:
Cave of Forgotten Dreams

Best Foreign Language Film:
The Skin I Live In

Best Art Direction:
Dante Ferretti, Production Designer, and Francesca Lo Schiavo, Set Decorator (Hugo)

Best Cinematography:
Emmanuel Lubezki (The Tree of Life)

Best Score:
Ludovic Bource (The Artist)

The Artist adds another Best Picture win to its growing list of accolades, having already received the honor from the New York Film Critics Circle as well as being named one of the best films of the year by the National Board of Review. However, there’s an interesting split here as they’ve given Best Director to master filmmaker Martin Scorsese for his own tribute to silent cinema, Hugo, an honor which he also received from the NBR.

It’s still early, but this raises speculation that there could be a split in the Best Picture and Best Director categories at the Oscars, something that hasn’t happened since Ang Lee won for Brokeback Mountain while Crash surprisingly took Best Picture back in 2006.

Clooney continues his reign as the favorite lead actor of the year for his performance in The Descendants, a film I have yet to see, but have heard nothing but great things about. Albert Brooks also takes another victory over the assumed frontrunner Christopher Plummer. Perhaps Plummer’s position is not as solid as originally thought? It should also be noted that Andy Serkis was nominated for his motion capture performance in Rise of the Planet of the Apes, a role that many felt was worthy of notice.

The DC critics have also chosen Rango as Best Animated Feature, which as I mentioned before, I would have to disagree with as I’ve already seen Spielberg’s upcoming The Adventures of Tintin and found it to be much more entertaining than Rango was.

50/50 seems to be gaining a little momentum, taking its second win in the Original Screenplay category over assumed frontrunner Midnight in Paris. I recently saw 50/50 and while I thought it was a decent film, I found Midnight in Paris to be superior, especially in its writing. The Descendants scores another Adapted Screenplay win and remains the favorite for the category.

The biggest questionable decision the DC critics made was awarding Best Acting Ensemble to Bridesmaids over such films as The Help and Hugo. I was one of the few who was not impressed with Bridesmaids, but was very impressed with the performances in The Help, which have been receiving rave reviews from all around, so it’s rather surprising to see them lose out to a film where acting was not one of its strong points.

On the 11th, the film critics of Boston and Los Angeles will announce their awards giving us an even better look at what possible consensuses are forming. Now to sit back and wait for The Artist to make its way out of New York and California so that the rest of us can finally see it. Stay tuned as we keep you up to date on the latest awards announcements.