‘Avatar’ takes top prize from NY Online Critics

Posted by · 2:04 pm · December 13th, 2009

AvatarNote to all the critics’ groups out there: yesterday was a quiet day. Did none of you think to announce your awards then, getting a little more individual attention in the process? Talk about a pile-up.

Anyway, the New York Film Critics Online just revealed their selections, and while they’re not the most influential group out there, there’s good news for those hoping for a blockbuster presence in the awards season — and a battle of the exes on the Best Director front.

Side note for fellow fans of Tilda Swinton’s performance in “Julia”: apparently she was Meryl Streep’s nearest competitor for Best Actress, though voter Katey Rich of CinemaBlend speculates that some critics voting hadn’t seen the film. Sigh. Still, nice to see her crop up in some way.

A full list of winners is after the cut. (Thanks to assorted commenters, and Katey again, for furnishing us with details.)

Best Picture: “Avatar”
Best Director: Kathryn Bigelow, “The Hurt Locker”
Best Actor: Jeff Bridges, “Crazy Heart”
Best Actress: Meryl Streep, “Julie & Julia”
Best Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz, “Inglourious Basterds”
Best Supporting Actress: Mo’Nique, “Precious”
Best Screenplay: Quentin Tarantino, “Inglourious Basterds”
Best Foreign Language Film: “The White Ribbon”
Best Documentary: “The Cove”
Best Animated Feature: “Up”
Best Cinematography: Robert Richardson, “Inglourious Basterds”
Best Music: T-Bone Burnett and Steve Bruton, “Crazy Heart”
Best Ensemble: “In the Loop”
Best Debut Feature: “(500) Days of Summer”
Best Breakthrough Performer: Christoph Waltz, “Inglourious Basterds”

Finally, their top 11 films (borrowing the same illogical Top 10 approach as the NBR), in alphabetical order:

“Fantastic Mr. Fox”
“The Hurt Locker”
“Inglourious Basterds”
“The Messenger”
“A Serious Man”
“Two Lovers”
“Up in the Air”

→ 39 Comments Tags: , , , | Filed in: Daily

39 responses so far

  • 1 12-13-2009 at 2:09 pm

    red_wine said...

    I am shocked. To say the least.
    However on twitter one voter wrote that there was no clear front-runner, the votes were all over the place and Avatar won by a very faint majority. Usually when people vote every which way, a shocker emerges.

  • 2 12-13-2009 at 2:11 pm

    Patryk said...

    “Hadn’t seen the film…”

    They just lost ANY sense of credibility they may have thought they had.

    Did they not have time? Did they not get screeners? Do they not have video stores in their neighborhood? Can they not afford to rent or daresay, purchase a copy of a film?

    This is scadalous. The New York Film Critics Online: GET OUT OF THE BUSINESS.

  • 3 12-13-2009 at 2:12 pm

    JAB said...

    can we talk about how bizarre it is that the online critics are the ones without a website?

  • 4 12-13-2009 at 2:15 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    The irony has not been lost on me, JAB!

  • 5 12-13-2009 at 2:15 pm

    Andrew said...

    Great news for Meryl Streep. She’s on her way to the third!

  • 6 12-13-2009 at 2:15 pm

    'REN said...

    @JAB ahahah, I know right?!

  • 7 12-13-2009 at 2:17 pm

    'REN said...

    It makes me so happy that Waltz is sweeping all of these critics awards. Very well-deserved, in my opinion. :)

  • 8 12-13-2009 at 2:17 pm

    tintin said...

    Good news for Streep, but, her third oscar for this film?

  • 9 12-13-2009 at 2:24 pm

    Albiony said...

    Jessica Lange won for a film no one ever saw, Liz Taylor for Buttlefly8, so why Streep could not win for Julie & Julia ?

  • 10 12-13-2009 at 2:24 pm

    M said...

    Yeah NY critics need to wheel and come again. Hadn’t seen the movie? don’t have a website that is up- to – date. I can’t take them seriously.

  • 11 12-13-2009 at 2:25 pm

    Andrew said...

    What’s the problem with Julie & Julia? It’s certainly not a masterpiece but the performance itself is Oscar-worthy. Read all the reviews of the film and you’ll see that even when some reviews were mixed, Streep got raves for it. Can you beat that?

  • 12 12-13-2009 at 2:25 pm

    Speaking English said...

    Haha. Well we still have the AFI to look forward to today. Lots of announcements this week!

  • 13 12-13-2009 at 2:27 pm

    Louis said...

    I am probably the only person on the internet who feels this way–I get it. But I really, really don’t see what’s so great about Waltz’s performance. I am not loving this sweep, and I was hoping that the Woody Harrelson NBR win would be more than just a fluke. Guess I was wrong.

  • 14 12-13-2009 at 2:28 pm

    Andrew said...

    90% of the film critics circles don’t have a website or it is out of date. I don’t see the problem with that because who really cares about them?

  • 15 12-13-2009 at 2:30 pm

    Louis said...

    Also, while I’m venting my unpopular opinions, I also think I’m the only person on the internet who liked Julie and Julia the film more than Streep’s performance. There would be no shame in her winning for that movie. But I don’t think that SHE would be a worthy winner.

  • 16 12-13-2009 at 2:34 pm

    The Other James D. said...

    That’s strange….They only gave one acting award per gender?

  • 17 12-13-2009 at 2:35 pm

    tintin said...

    StreepĀ“s performance was fantastic.

  • 18 12-13-2009 at 2:37 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Other James: No. As I say in the article, we don’t have a complete list of winners yet.

  • 19 12-13-2009 at 2:50 pm

    Ed said...

    Nice to see Tilda Swinton isn’t being ignored

  • 20 12-13-2009 at 2:52 pm

    Adam Smith said...

    Hey Guy, I’m pretty sure I saw someone tweet that Mo’Nique won Supporting Actress. I’ll post the link/account name as soon as I find it.

  • 21 12-13-2009 at 2:54 pm

    Adam Smith said...

    Guy, check @kateyrich

    Here’s the exact quote:

    “NYFCO update: Waltz wins Breakthrough AND Supporting Actor; Mo’nique sweeps; Basterds wins screenplay and cinematog. On to director now.”

  • 22 12-13-2009 at 2:55 pm

    Adam Smith said...

    And another one from @muckster:

    “I have a hunch I know how Faruza Balk ended up with a supporting nom for BAD LIEUTENANT… Award goes to Mo’Nique. #nyfco”

  • 23 12-13-2009 at 2:57 pm

    The Other James D. said...

    A guy named Charlie said this on the AwardsDaily comment thread:


    (500) Days of Summer won Best Director Debut.”

  • 24 12-13-2009 at 2:59 pm

    The Other James D. said...

    Disregard that comment. I hadn’t refreshed the page in a while, so I didn’t see it updated. Just trying to help.

  • 25 12-13-2009 at 3:06 pm

    tintin said...

    Best actor?

  • 26 12-13-2009 at 3:18 pm

    Harmonica said...

    Best actor is JEFF BRIDGES

  • 27 12-13-2009 at 4:18 pm

    The Other James D. said...

    ^This is true. And this is the slightly interesting Top 10 films:

    Adventureland (Miramax Films)
    Avatar (20th Century Fox)
    Fantastic Mr. Fox (Fox Searchlight)
    The Hurt Locker (Summit Entertainment)
    Inglourious Basterds (The Weinstein Co.)
    The Messenger (Oscilloscope)
    Precious (Lionsgate)
    A Serious Man (Focus Features
    Two Lovers (Magnolia)
    Up (Disney/Pixar)
    Up in the Air (Paramount)

    Don’t forget, Waltz won breakthrough performer as well.

  • 28 12-13-2009 at 4:26 pm

    Katey said...

    As the person who put on twitter that Tilda Swinton didn’t win because half the crowd hadn’t seen the film, I should clarify that that was just my guess, based on that assumption that if you saw the film, you’d have no choice but to vote for her.

    By the way, the full list of winners has been released. Apologies for the gaps in our tweets:

    Avatar (20th Century Fox)

    Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker)

    Jeff Bridges (Crazy Heart)

    Meryl Streep (Julie & Julia)

    Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds)

    Mo’Nique (Precious)

    Inglourious Basterds – Robert Richardson

    Inglourious Basterds – Quentin Tarantino

    The White Ribbon (Sony Classics)

    The Cove (Roadside Attractions)

    Up (Disney/Pixar)

    Crazy Heart – Steve Bruton & T. Bone Burnett, music supervisor, Jeffrey Pollack

    Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds)

    Marc Webb [(500) Days of Summer]

    In the Loop (IFC Films)

  • 29 12-13-2009 at 4:28 pm

    The Other James D. said...

    Well, I should say Top 11 = 10 + separate winner. Silly.

  • 30 12-13-2009 at 5:08 pm

    Patrick said...

    Gee, I think I’ll announce my own film awards. But I’m not going to see any movies at all, ‘cept what came out on video already. My Top 10 list is going one better than this group (and the NBR): I’ll list 12 movies! (This would be just as legitimate as any of these on-line groups.)

  • 31 12-13-2009 at 5:17 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Katey: Thanks so much for the extra info. Sorry for the misleading statement re: Swinton. It’s been amended.

  • 32 12-13-2009 at 5:27 pm

    Me. said...

    What was the top ten in this group?

    And It seems Mo’Nique and Christoph Waltz are on their way to winning Oscars. I see Best Actor as Freeman vs. Bridges and Streep vs. Mulligan so far.

    Nine and The Lovely Bones are really in need of help.

  • 33 12-13-2009 at 6:32 pm

    Joel said...

    I support “Fantastic Mr. Fox” being on any top ten.

  • 34 12-13-2009 at 6:32 pm

    Chad Hartigan said...

    Patryk- There have been 498 films released theatrically in 2009 so far. Nobody on planet Earth has seen every one of them so cut them some slack.

  • 35 12-13-2009 at 6:38 pm

    Jim T said...

    Chad, if they heard about Swinton’s performance, they should have seen the film in order to give a possibly deserving candidate a chance. It’s not like we’re asking of them to see a movie that everything in it is considered crap.
    Of course we don’t know if the reason was that they didn’t see it.

  • 36 12-13-2009 at 6:53 pm

    Glenn said...

    Considering almost everybody who HAS seen “Julia” has called Swinton’s performance nothing short of a revelation, then it’s poor form to have not seen it. They won’t see “Julia” but they will sit through movies they know will be shit just to pan them (hello New Moon).

  • 37 12-13-2009 at 7:17 pm

    The Other James D. said...

    @Me.: I posted it at #27, and Guy has it in the main post as well =P. But you might have noticed already….I’m just seeing this now, following the doozy of a Dexter finale. I mean, whoa….

  • 38 12-13-2009 at 7:19 pm

    Me. said...

    Oh oops! My bad. Sorry and thanks.

  • 39 12-13-2009 at 9:01 pm

    Patryk said...

    Chad: No one would expect anyone to see all 500+ theatrically released films. But anyone calling themselves a “critic” should be embarassed to vote without seeing a truly deserving and very well reviewed performance. Now I see that it was just one tweet’s opinion. So on we move.

    Thanks for clarifying, Guy.