‘Melancholia’ Gets Rare Win from National Society of Film Critics

The National Society of Film Critics is one of the more elite groups of film critics, consisting of some of the nation’s most respected movie writers and journalists. It is unlike the Broadcast Film Critics Society in that its members are primarily from major newspapers and periodicals and their admittance policy is much more strict. Their membership includes major critics like Roger Ebert, David Denby, Scott Foundas, and Todd McCarthy so it is not surprising that they vote independently from other major critics groups across the country.

Many of their winners for the 2012 awards are completely outside of the typical winners we have been seeing all precursor season. Most surprising is Lars Von Trier’s Melancholia, which took home the top prize for Best Film, just beating out Terence Malick’s The Tree of Life. Malick did manage to score the Best Director prize, however, and his cinematographer, Emmanuel Lubezki took home the prize for Best Cinematography. Gary Oldman made a strong run for Best Actor and came in second to Brad Pitt’s performance in Moneyball.

There is little Oscar indication in the group’s picks, but it is certainly fun to see a critics group acting on their own. Check out their complete list of winners below and share your thoughts in the comments!

National Society of Film Critics
Awards 2012

BEST PICTURE
*1. Melancholia – 29 (Lars von Trier)
2. The Tree of Life – 28 (Terrence Malick)
3. A Separation – 20 (Asghar Farhadi)

BEST DIRECTOR
*1. Terrence Malick – 31 (The Tree of Life)
2. Martin Scorsese – 29 (Hugo)
3. Lars von Trier – 23 (Melancholia)

BEST ACTOR
*1. Brad Pitt – 35 (Moneyball, The Tree of Life)
2. Gary Oldman – 22 (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy)
3. Jean Dujardin – 19 (The Artist)

BEST ACTRESS
*1. Kirsten Dunst – 39 (Melancholia)
2. Yun Jung-hee – 25 (Poetry)
3. Meryl Streep – 20 (The Iron Lady)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
*1. Albert Brooks – 38 (Drive)
2. Christopher Plummer – 24 (Beginners)
3. Patton Oswalt – 19 (Young Adult)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
*1. Jessica Chastain – 30 (The Tree of Life, Take Shelter, The Help)
2. Jeannie Berlin – 19 (Margaret)
3. Shailene Woodley – 17 (The Descendants)

BEST NONFICTION
*1. Cave of Forgotten Dreams – 35 (Werner Herzog)
2. The Interrupters – 26 (Steve James)
3. Into the Abyss – 18 (Werner Herzog)

BEST SCREENPLAY
*1. A Separation – 39 (Asghar Farhadi)
2. Moneyball – 22 (Steven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin)
3. Midnight in Paris – 16 (Woody Allen)

BEST FOREIGN-LANGUAGE FILM
*1. A Separation – 67 (Asghar Farhadi)
2. Mysteries of Lisbon – 28 (Raoul Ruiz)
3. Le Havre – 22 (Aki Kaurismäki)

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
*1. The Tree of Life – 76 (Emanuel Lubezki)
2. Melancholia – 41 (Manuel Alberto Claro)
3. Hugo – 33 (Robert Richardson)

EXPERIMENTAL
Ken Jacobs, for “Seeking the Monkey King.”

FILM HERITAGE
1. BAMcinématek for its complete Vincente Minnelli retrospective with all titles shown on 16 mm. or 35 mm. film.
2. Lobster Films, Groupama Gan Foundation for Cinema and the Technicolor Foundation for Cinema for the restoration of the color version of George Méliès’s “A Trip to the Moon.”
3. New York’s Museum of Modern Art for its extensive retrospective of Weimar Cinema.
4. Flicker Alley for their box set “Landmarks of Early Soviet Film.”
5. Criterion Collecton for its 2-disc DVD package “The Complete Jean Vigo.”

Don’t forget to check the precursor charts for the latest information!

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