Remember yesterday when I mentioned that Carol was one of those films you shouldn’t count out of the race just because the National Board of Review ignored it? Well, today the New York Film Critics Circle showed just why by declaring it the best film of 2015, along with awarding it Best Director (Todd Haynes), Best Screenplay, and Best Cinematography. The win hardly comes as a surprise as the film is one of the most critically-praised of the year, scoring a 94% on Rotten Tomatoes and an astonishing 95/100 on Metacritic.
Looking at the rest of their winners, we have only a couple of surprises, including a victory for Kristen Stewart for Best Supporting Actress in Clouds of Sils Maria and a win for Michael Keaton for Best Actor in Spotlight. The former had won the Caesar Award (the French Academy Award) for her performance, but it wasn’t really thought that she had a chance when it came to the American awards, while Keaton’s win comes as a surprise mainly due to him being a supporting character in the journalist drama.
Other than that, there’s nothing unexpected here. Inside Out scores another Best Animated Film win on the road to its inevitable and well-deserved triumph at the Oscars, while Mark Rylance and Saoirse Ronan nab their respective first victories for Bridge of Spies and Brooklyn (the latter being another film I warned not to count out yet).
There are still many more critics groups to announce, including the upcoming Los Angeles Film Critics Association, in addition to some major nominations from the Screen Actors Guild and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association next week, so be sure to check back regularly for updates. In the meantime, please see below for a complete list of today’s winners:
Best Picture: Carol
Best Director: Todd Haynes, Carol
Best Actress: Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn
Best Actor: Michael Keaton, Spotlight
Best Supporting Actress: Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria
Best Supporting Actor: Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies
Best Screenplay: Phyllis Nagy, Carol
Best Cinematography: Edward Lachman, Carol
Best Nonfiction Film: In Jackson Heights, Frederick Wiseman
Best Animated Film: Inside Out, Pete Docter, Ronnie del Carmen
Best First Film: Son of Saul, László Nemes
Best Foreign Film: Timbuktu, Abderrahmane Sissako
Special Award #1: Posthumous Award honoring the legacy of William Becker and Janus Films
Special Award #2: Ennio Morricone, Composer