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Archive for February 15th, 2011

BAFTA 2011

A few thoughts on last nights BAFTA awards. Before I get onto the winners, a few observations. The BAFTA’s are awards given by a national academy in their own right and often make better choices than the oscars, and yet IMDB reduce them to The Road to the Oscars along with other awards such as the starfuckers of The Hollywood Foreign Press Association responsible for the golden globes. There were a lot of winners missing from the ceremony, are the BAFTA’s losing their appeal or did they all think they would miss out to The King’s Speech. Finally why do they not show the awards live on the BBC?

Best Film

Winner: The King’s Speech: No real surprise here, it is what everyone was expecting and I am certainly not upset by it. A fantastic movie that deserves all the great press it is getting but is it the best film of the year? For me sadly not although I gave it five stars out of five when reviewing it, I gave the same to Black Swan and Inception. The Social Network narrowly missed out on the full five stars. True Grit only opened in the UK on Friday and I will be seeing it in the next few days, I really don’t know what loophole made it eligible. My choice for the Best Film wold have been Inception.

Alexander Korda Award for Outstanding British Film of the Year

Winner: The King’s Speech:  The other nominations were: 127 Hours, Another Year, Four Lions, Made in Dagenham. All great movies, I think they got it right though.

Best Actor

Winner: Colin Firth for The King’s Speech: Definitely the right choice, Firth was outstanding but lets not forget it is a strong category. Although Biutiful was a little esoteric and incoherent but Javier Bardem’s performance was brillient and Firths greatest challenger. Jesse Eisenberg and James Franco both played real life people with questionable reputations, the actors made them both human and sympathetic. As mentioned above I Am yet to see True Grit but Jeff Bridges is always worth watching.

Best Actress

Winner: Natalie Portman for Black Swan: I have made no secret my opinion on this one, I would have given the award to Jennifer Lawrence for Winter’s Bone who wasn’t nominated. Of the nominees Natalie Portman was the right choice. Noomi Rapace who was excellent in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is the real winner, although she didn’t pick up the award she has stepped onto the world stage and picked up some high profile roles. Both Annette Bening and Julianne Moore picked up nominations for The Kids Are All Right, both where great but not worth an award. I look forward to seeing how good Hailee Steinfeld is in True Grit.

Best Supporting Actor

Winner: Geoffrey Rush for The King’s Speech: Rush was excellent but did he win on his own merits or was it just part of the groundswell and Zeitgeist that goes with The King’s Speech? For my money Andrew Garfield should have won for The Social Network, not only was his the pest supporting performance of the year, but ti was also his only chance for a major award as he has been criminally overlooked by the Oscars. Again a strong category, Christian Bale, Mark Ruffalo and the late great Pete Postlethwaite could have all walk away with the award in other years.

Best Supporting Actress

Winner: Helena Bonham Carter for The King’s Speech: How Lesley Manville didn’t win for Another Year, I will never know, at least she got a nomination, The Oscars didn’t recogniser her great performance. As strong as the supporting actor category, Amy Adams for The Fighter; Barbara Hershey for Black Swan and Miranda Richardson for Made in Dagenham could easily walked away with the award.

David Lean Award for Achievement in Direction

Winner: David Fincher for The Social Network: Although not the best movie of the year this was the right choice. Making such an entertaing and enthralling movie out of so little is a testament to the writing and the direction. To put it simply, it is the most directed movie of the shortlist. The other Nominees were: Darren Aronofsky for Black Swan; Danny Boyle for 127 Hours; Tom Hooper for The King’s Speech and Christopher Nolan for Inception.

Best Screenplay (Original)

Winner: David Seidler for The King’s Speech: Had it been the most original screenplay Christopher Nolan would surely have won for Inception, as it was The Kings Speech was a good choice. The other nominees were: Mark Heyman, Andres Heinz, John J. McLaughlin for Black Swan; Scott Silver, Paul Tamasy, Eric Johnson for The Fighter and Lisa Cholodenko, Stuart Blumberg for The Kids Are All Right.

Best Screenplay (Adapted)

Winner: Aaron Sorkin for The Social Network: There was only one choice for this one, everything I said about best director goes double for the screenplay. The other nominees where: Danny Boyle, Simon Beaufoy for 127 Hours; Rasmus Heisterberg, Nikolaj Arcel for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo; Michael Arndt for Toy Story 3: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen for True Grit.

Best Cinematography

Winner: Roger Deakins for True Grit: Having not see the movie yet I don’t know if it was the right choice, hopfully they didn’t take th lowest common denominator approach and given the award to the movie with the prettiest pictures. Of the other four (Anthony Dod Mantle, Enrique Chediak for 127 Hours; Matthew Libatique Black Swan; Wally Pfister for Inception and Danny Cohen for The King’s Speech), all of which I have seen, I would have gone for Black Swan, not only is the movie strangely beautiful but it is also amazingly lit and composed.

Best Film not in the English Language

Winner: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a great movie and it would have been a worthy winner if not for The Secret in Their Eyes, a phenomenal movie that picked up the equivelent Oscar last year. The other Nominees were: Biutiful; I Am Love; Of Gods and Men.

Best Animated Feature Film

Winner: Toy Story 3: I can’t say much on this one as the winning movie was the only one I saw, the other nominees were: Despicable Me and How to Train Your Dragon.

Orange Rising Star Award

Winner: Tom Hardy: The only category voted for by the public. I struggled with my vote: Tom Hardy was great in inception but for me already an established star. Gemma Arterton was certainly an established star and with a mixture of indie and blockbuster movies 2010 was a big year for her, I must admit I never saw the attraction (from and acting point of view) until I saw The Disappearance of Alice Creed. Andrew Garfield had a great year with a movie stealing performance in The Social Network and the lead role in the new Spider-Man Reboot. Aaron Johnson does define rising star having come out of nowhere in the last eighteen months. Like all the other nominees Emma Stone has been kicking around for a few years now, having seen her in a few movies she really came to my attention in Zombieland in 2009, she built on this last year with Easy A. In the end I went for Andrew Garfield

Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer

Winner: Four Lions: Christopher Morris(Director/Writer): My choice would have been Gareth Edwards(Director/Writer) for Monsters, a movie I consider good enough to have been nominated in the Best picture category. Unfortunately genre movies tend not to be considered award worthy! The other nominees were: Clio Barnard, Tracy O’Riordan(Director, Producer) for The Arbor; Banksy, Jaimie D’Cruz(Director, Producer) for Exit Through the Gift Shop; Nick Whitfield(Director/Writer) Skeletons.

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