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Critics Awards: National Board of Review

The National Board of Review used to be the first critics group to announce their winners. They aren’t the first anymore, but they are still one of the most important critics groups during Awards Season. The Best Picture winner is almost guaranteed a nomination. The acting winners are less of a tell (Tilda Swinton won last year and missed out on an Oscar nomination), but they are still pretty good indicators of who is in the race.

Zero Dark Thirty picked up another Best Picture win. I’m not convinced that it’s going to be winning the Oscar yet, but it does seem like it’s going to be the critical darling of the year. Bradley Cooper’s win here in huge. If he manages to win a few more of these, I would guarantee him a spot in Best Actor. DiCaprio is also a big contender in the race now. Django Unchained has only started to be screened and not a lot has been said about it. DiCaprio is in the hunt now. Supporting Actress winners here usually don’t translate, but Dowd is on the map again. [Note: I’ll be updating the Critics tally in a little bit.]

Best Picture:
Zero Dark Thirty

Top 10 Films of the Year:
Beasts of the Southern Wild
Django Unchained
Les Miserables
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Promised Land
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty

Best Director:
Kathryn Bigelow, Zero Dark Thirty

Best Actor:
Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook

Best Actress:
Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty

Best Supporting Actor:
Leonardo DiCaprio, Django Unchained

Best Supporting Actress:
Ann Dowd, Compliance

Best Original Screenplay:
Looper – Rian Johnson

Best Adapted Screenplay:
Silver Linings Playbook – David O. Russell

Best Animated Film:
Wreck-It Ralph – Rich Moore

Best Foreign-Language Film:
Amour – Michael Haneke

Best Non-Fiction Film:
Search for Sugar Man – Malik Bendjelloul

Best Directorial Debut:
Beasts of the Southern Wild – Benh Zeitlin

Breakthrough Actor:
Tom Holland, The Impossible

Breakthrough Actress:
Quvenzhane Wallis, Beasts of the Southern Wild

Best Ensemble:
Les Miserables

Special Achievement in Filmmaking
Ben Affleck, Argo

Spotlight Award:
John Goodman, Argo, Flight, ParaNorman and Trouble with the Curve

NBR Freedom of Expression Award:
Central Park Five

NBR Freedom of Expression Award:
Promised Land

William K. Everson Film History Award:
50 Years of Bond Films

Top 5 Foreign Language Films
The Intouchables
The Kid with a Bike
War Witch

Top 5 Documentaries
Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry
The Gatekeepers
The Invisible War
Only the Young

Top 10 Independent Films
End of Watch
Hello I Must Be Going
Little Birds
Moonrise Kingdom
On the Road
Sleepwalk with Me