‘Basterds,’ ‘Nine’ lead the pack with BFCA

Posted by · 2:31 am · December 14th, 2009

Eli Roth in Inglourious BasterdsFor better or worse, the Broadcast Film Critics Association has, of late, been frequently cited for its Oscar prognosticative prowess. Of course, it’s a pointless tidbit in the grand scheme and no one should be looking at organizations like this to see how accurate they might be on that front (even if this one in particular, of which I am a member, makes it a point every year to remind you).

Having said that, I don’t think anyone would be shocked in the slightest if the BFCA’s list of 10 Best Picture nominees (see below) matches the Academy’s 10-for-10 this year. There is just one film on the list that ever felt truly questionable to me at some point along the way, and even that seems more and more locked in as latter-year hopefuls fail to catch expected fire.

“Inglourious Basterds” and “Nine” led the way with 10 nominations each, a new record.  However, given the addition of below the line categories this year, it’s worth noting that their tallies wouldn’t have been so robust in the past. Quentin Tarantino’s film would have landed five nominations if it was business as usual. “Nine” would have landed three.  And “Up in the Air” would have led the field.

Alas, in an increasing effort to, on the surface, lend more credence to other aspects of the filmmaking process, but in reality, raise the profile of the organization via its awards show, this year’s slate reads, down the line, like a preview of the Oscars, like it or not.

Of course, there are some elements that stand out as somewhat singular. The acting and directing categories each have six nominees, making room for contenders that may have trouble crossing over to the AMPAS list. Some inspired choices in the adapted screenplay field could represent dark horse contenders for Oscar. But the craft categories read like a soft lob right down the middle.

Some in the BFCA, I think, know what they’re looking for in these fields. A great many, I suspect, do not.

In any case, this conservative slate, which some might call uneventful, is indicative of the safe consensus as we see it now. Anything can change in the next four weeks as other contenders try to find corners of the Academy membership to usher their cause along. There is always a Michael Shannon lurking about.

I’m happy to see “The Lovely Bones” properly recognized in a few fields, especially Saoirse Ronan’s bid for lead actress. (She should walk away with the young actor/actress award, but we’ll see.) I’m also pleased Marion Cotillard was nominated in supporting, where she belongs, and that “District 9” has a presence.

But it’s a shame two of the most shrill performances of the year, from Jae Head and Kodi Smit-McPhee, were recognized in the young actor/actress category, autopilot nominations that should have gone to more notable work from Édgar Flores, Jennifer Lawrence or, what could have been a truly inspired choice, Jordan Nagai.

The nominees for the 15th annual Critics’ Choice Movie Awards (note the slight change in moniker) are…

Best Picture
“Avatar”
“An Education”
“The Hurt Locker”
“Inglourious Basterds”
“Invictus”
“Nine”
“Precious”
“A Serious Man”
“Up”
“Up in the Air”

Best Directing
Kathryn Bigelow, “The Hurt Locker”
James Cameron, “Avatar”
Lee Daniels, “Precious”
Clint Eastwood, “Invictus”
Jason Reitman, “Up in the Air”
Quentin Tarantino, “Inglourious Basterds”

Best Actor
Jeff Bridges, “Crazy Heart”
George Clooney, “Up in the Air”
Colin Firth, “A Single Man”
Morgan Freeman, “Invictus”
Viggo Mortensen, “The Road”
Jeremy Renner, “The Hurt Locker”

Best Actress
Emily Blunt, “The Young Victoria”
Sandra Bullock, “The Blind Side”
Carey Mulligan, “An Education”
Saoirse Ronan, “The Lovely Bones”
Gabourey Sidibe, “Precious”
Meryl Streep, “Julie & Julia”

Best Supporting Actor
Matt Damon, “Invictus”
Woody Harrelson, “The Messenger”
Christian McKay, “Me and Orson Welles”
Alfred Molina, “An Education”
Stanley Tucci, “The Lovely Bones”
Christoph Waltz, “Inglourious Basterds”

Best Supporting Actress
Marion Cotillard, “Nine”
Vera Farmiga, “Up in the Air”
Anna Kendrick, “Up in the Air”
Mo’Nique, “Precious”
Julianne Moore, “A Single Man”
Samantha Morton, “The Messenger”

Best Young Actor/Actress
Jae Head, “The Blind Side”
Bailee Madison, “Brothers”
Max Records, “Where the Wild Things Are”
Saoirse Ronan, “The Lovely Bones”
Kodi Smit-McPhee, “The Road”

Best Acting Ensemble
“Inglourious Basterds”
“Nine”
“Precious”
“Star Trek”
“Up in the Air”

Best Adapted Screenplay
“District 9”
“An Education”
“Fantastic Mr. Fox”
“Precious
“A Single Man”
“Up in the Air”

Best Original Screenplay
“(500) Days of Summer”
“The Hurt Locker”
“Inglourious Basterds”
“A Serious Man”
“Up”

Best Animated Feature
“Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs”
“Coraline”
“Fantastic Mr. Fox”
“The Princess and the Frog”
“Up”

Best Art Direction
“Avatar”
“Inglourious Basterds”
“The Lovely Bones”
“Nine”
“A Single Man”

Best Cinematography
“Avatar”
“The Hurt Locker”
“Inglourious Basterds”
“The Lovely Bones”
“Nine”

Best Costume Design
“Bright Star”
“Inglourious Basterds”
“Nine”
“Where the Wild Things Are”
“The Young Victoria”

Best Editing
“Avatar”
“The Hurt Locker”
“Inglourious Basterds”
“Nine”
“Up in the Air”

Best Makeup
“Avatar”
“District 9”
“Nine”
“The Road”
“Star Trek”

Best Score
“The Informant!”
“The Princess and the Frog”
“Sherlock Holmes”
“Up”
“Where the Wild Things Are”

Best Song
“The Weary Kind” from “Crazy Heart”
“(I Want To) Come Home” from “Everybody’s Fine”
“Cinema Italiano” from “Nine”
“Almost There” from “The Princess and the Frog”
“All is Love” from “Where the Wild Things Are”

Best Sound
“Avatar”
“District 9”
“The Hurt Locker”
“Nine”
“Star Trek”

Best Visual Effects
“2012”
“Avatar”
“District 9”
“The Lovely Bones”
“Star Trek”

Best Action Movie
“Avatar”
“District 9”
“The Hurt Locker”
“Inglourious Basterds”
“Star Trek”

Best Comedy
“(500) Days of Summer”
“The Hangover”
“It’s Complicated”
“The Proposal”
“Zombieland”

Best Picture Made for Television
“Gifted Hands”
“Grey Gardens”
“Into the Storm”
“Taking Chance”

Best Foreign Language Film
“Broken Embraces”
“Coco Before Chanel”
“Red Cliff”
“Sin Nombre”
“The White Ribbon”

Best Documentary Feature
“Anvil!: The Story of Anvil”
“Capitalism: A Love Story”
“The Cove”
“Food, Inc.”
“Michael Jackson’s This Is It”

The Critics’ Choice Movie Awards will be held Friday, January 15, 2010 at 9:00pm PST and will be broadcast live on VH1.




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52 responses so far

  • 1 12-14-2009 at 7:02 pm

    Alex said...

    Having seen “The Young Victoria,” Blunt was good, but certainly not great or spectacular. The film itself was generic, insipid and above all forgettable. To see her getting nominated for this role is ridiculous, especially if you look at this role in relation to some of her other work. Of course that’s award season for you… someone always gets cheated, like poor Kristen Scott Thomas last year.

  • 2 12-14-2009 at 7:46 pm

    Lance said...

    JJ – What reviews are you reading? Just go on Rotten Tomatoes and look at the first page of selected quotes about Blunt and you’ll see wonderful quotes about her performance.

    The critical consensus is that she shines in this performance.