The Chicago Film Critics Association announced 2014 superlatives Monday night and it was "Boyhood" -- big shock -- coming out on top. Also, in what must have been a heartwarming moment during the announcement dinner, "Life Itself" won Best Documentary.
The Academy has announced the seven bake-off finalists for this year's makeup and hairstyling Oscar race, and the only real surprising omission is Disney's "Into the Woods." I personally thought it looked a bit, eh, theatrical and not quite camera ready, if you will. But I figured it would skate on in here.
Another hour, another announcement that "Boyhood" won a critics award. This time, it's the Detroit Film Critics Society, which also jumped on the recent Rosamund Pike bandwagon. One of the few categories "Boyhood" lost in was the ensemble field, which apparently yielded a three-way tie. Guys…
Um, did Terrence Malick go off and channel David Cronenberg or Gaspar Noé or is the "Knight of Cups" trailer just an amazing bit of marking? We've been waiting a while for this one and, well, it sure as hell looks like it was worth the wait.
Moving right along, the St. Louis Gateway Film Critics Association more or less fell in line with top honors going to "Boyhood." Alejandro González Iñárritu won Best Director for "Boyhood" and supporting kudos went to frontrunners J.K. Simmons and Patricia Arquette, but the lead fields were a bit more adventurous with Jake Gyllenhaal ("Nightcrawler," his second prize on the day) and Rosamund Pike ("Gone Girl") going the distance.
This tally will change throughout the day and certainly the week as more organizations declare 2014 superlatives, but at present, critics and precursor Best Picture honors break down thusly: seven for "Boyhood," two for "Birdman" and one each for "The Grand Budapest Hotel," "Ida," "A Most Violent Year," "Nightcrawler," "Selma" and "Snowpiercer." But "Birdman" and "Grand Budapest" have led the lion's share of nominations announcements, making it clear, if this morning's BFCA list hadn't crystallized it, that the season's critical darlings are Wes Anderson, Alejandro González Iñárritu and Richard Linklater.
OK, is the "San Diego Film Critics Society" just one guy in a room who really loves "Nightcrawler?" I'm only kidding, but boy, the group wasn't kidding with all that love for Dan Gilroy's film in the nominations stage. It won seven awards from the organization Monday, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Supporting Actress. Way to make your mark, folks.
Though the Indiana Film Journalists Association have chimed in with the usual at the top, as "Boyhood" took Best Film and Best Director honors, their decisions in a few areas are pretty interesting. Ralph Fiennes for Best Actor, for instance, and "Under the Skin" for score. The runner-ups throughout are pretty nifty if you're getting tired of the usual.
On Saturday, nearly 30,000 people assembled in New York City’s Washington Square Park for "Millions March NYC," a demonstration protesting the grand jury's decision not to indict an NYPD officer in the death of Staten Island resident Eric Garner, along with broader racial issues that have bubbled to the surface in America throughout 2014. On Sunday, Paramount Pictures held its east coast premiere for director Ava DuVernay’s "Selma" at the city’s lavish Ziegfeld Theater. With a fleet of photographers ready to snap their photos, DuVernay and her cast took advantage of the stage, donning shirts emblazoned with "I Can’t Breathe," Garner’s final words and the unofficial protest slogan, for a striking group photo. The example set the night before could not go unacknowledged.
The Sundance Film Festival announced the addition of 10 new titles to its 2015 program, which features 123 feature-length films and represents 29 countries. The two additions to the premiere category, "True Story" and "A Walk in the Woods," appear to have increased the festival's already potent acquisition market and star power.