The Skandies countdown has begun. Starting with #20 (Whiplash and placers in seven other categories), Mike D’Angelo will be posting a round of results from his informal poll of critics each day, landing on #1 sometime towards the end of February.
About a month ago, Kevin B. Lee posted the results of his informal poll, having sent a question out into the ether, “What are the best films of the decade so far?” He turned those results into a lovely video, too. At any rate, now the staff at the Dissolve has written up their own annotated list of the best films of the past five years, 50 in all. Keith Phipps: “Boyhood won this poll by a healthy margin, which raises a question: Why? Were we all still so dazzled by the consensus choice for the best film of 2014? Or was there something else at work in Boyhood turning up on so many ballots?”
In his latest “Bombast” column for Film Comment, Nick Pinkerton presents “a list of movies that played commercially in 2014 which I saw and, at this late date, feel have contributed something to my life, either moments of pleasure (expected, unexpected) or things that are interesting or troubling to think about.”
Each year, Brian Darr gathers thoughts from friends and associates in the Bay Area on their own personal highlights. The feature’s called “I Only Have Two Eyes” and, so far, he has nearly 20 contributions.
“France’s Academy of Cinema Arts and Sciences announced the nominations for this year’s Cesar Awards” last week. Rhonda Richford and Georg Szalai for the Hollywood Reporter: “Bertrand Bonello’s Saint Laurent led with 10 nominations, including best film, best actor for Gaspard Ulliel and best director. The competing biopic Yves Saint Laurent from director Jalil Lespert received seven, including a nomination for best actor for Pierre Niney, though Lespert himself was left out. The Oscar-nominated Timbuktu received eight, including the best film, director (for Abderrahmane Sissako) and original screenplay categories.”
The New York Times‘ A.O. Scott on this year’s Oscar-nominated animated shorts
More news from France: “Timbuktu was the big winner at this year’s Lumières awards, France’s equivalent of the Golden Globes, sweeping best film and director nods,” reports Variety‘s Elsa Keslassy. And Fabien Lemercier reports that Timbuktu has scored with the French Union of Critics as well.
Also at Cineuropa, Jorn Rossing Jensen reports that Lars von Trier gave “his first public speech in Denmark in almost four years” at the Danish Film Academy’s 31st Robert gala. “It was also his first appearance ever at a national film awards presentation. But he had every reason to be there: von Trier’s own edit of the Charlotte Gainsbourg and Stellan Skarsgård starrer Nymphomaniac collected eight Roberts, including Best Feature, Best Director and Best Original Screenplay, from its total of 16 nominations.”
“Last year, Roy Andersson’s A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence became the first Swedish film to win Venice’s Golden Lion,” notes Variety‘s Jon Asp. “But on home turf, at Monday’s Swedish Film Gala, it no chance against Ruben Östlund’s Force Majeure,” which “swept no less than six Guldbagge Awards.” That’s “a record at the 51 year-old kudos ceremony.”
Back at Cineuropa, Bénédicte Prot: “Last Wednesday, the Austrian Film Academy announced the winners of the Austrian Film Awards 2015, and The Dark Valley by Andreas Prochaska won hands down, going home with eight prizes, including the Best Film and Best Director Awards.”
The American Cinema Editors have announced the winners of their Eddie awards. The film categories:
- Dramatic: Sandra Adair, Boyhood.
- Comedy or Musical: Barney Pilling, The Grand Budapest Hotel.
- Animated: David Burrows and Chris McKay, The Lego Movie.
- Documentary: Mathilde Bonnefoy, Citizenfour.
HitFix‘s Gregory Ellwood reports on the Art Directors Guild awards: “The Grand Budapest Hotel, arguably the Oscar frontrunner, took home the Period Film honor. Budapest‘s studio stablemate Birdman won the Contemporary Film award and Guardians of the Galaxy beat out Interstellar and Into the Woods in the Fantasy Film category.”
“Australians love Birdman—or at least the 140 voting members of the international chapter of the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) do.” As Pip Bulbeck notes in the Hollywood Reporter, Birdman‘s won best picture, director (Alejandro G. Iñárritu) and actor (Michael Keaton).