To the National Board of Review, it’s The Post. To the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, it’s Call Me By Your Name. In Boston, Phantom Thread.
‘Tis the season of movie awards, and across the country, critics groups are gathering to anoint the year’s best films with their distinct honors. As evidenced above, these regional and national affiliations can’t quite agree on an actual best film of 2017, and perhaps that’s for the best. This is an art form, after all, and a subjective one in the end.
Now, the Chicago Film Critics Association (CFCA) proves to have a taste all its own, as the group of print, television, online and radio film writers from around the Chicagoland area named Greta Gerwig’s Lady Bird as their best film of the year.
The awards, announced at the CFCA’s annual holiday dinner for members and industry guests, were bestowed this year on a fairly diverse slate of films, particularly for an organization that tends towards sweeps (one film winning essentially all the honors). While Lady Bird ultimately nabbed top honors, Christopher Nolan was recognized as Best Director (the only win for Dunkirk, actually), and Jordan Peele’s script for Get Out received Best Original Screenplay honors. In a particularly strong documentary year, the heartwarming (and very non-threatening) Jane was named best non-fic pic, and to no one’s surprise at all, Coco topped Best Animation.
Ultimately, a film criticism body made up of mostly (white) men found (though aren’t they all?) it in their collective heart to see Lady Bird, the story of a teenage girl navigating her way through high school, new romances and rocky parental relationships, to a total of four awards, including top acting honors for both Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalf. And while Gerwig didn’t nab Best Directing honors, the group did see fit to name her “Most Promising Filmmaker” following this very strong debut directing effort. Stick that in your pipe and smoke it, Nolan.
The Chicago Film Critics Association first awards were held in 1989; today, the organization is comprised of about sixty film critics representing nearly every major publication and outlet in the Chicagoland area. The membership votes to determine category nominees, and then again to determine winners. A full list of winners is below.
The 6th Chicago Critics Film Festival is slated for May 4-10 at the Music Box Theatre.
Full List of CFCA 2017 Award Winners
BEST PICTURE: Lady Bird
BEST DIRECTOR: Christopher Nolan, Dunkirk
BEST ACTOR: Timothée Chalamet, Call Me By Your Name
BEST ACTRESS: Saoirse Ronan, Lady Bird
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR: Willem Dafoe, The Florida Project
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS, Laurie Metcalf, Lady Bird
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY: Jordan Peele, Get Out
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY: James Ivory, Call Me By Your Name
BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM: The Square
BEST DOCUMENTARY: Jane
BEST ANIMATED FEATURE: Coco
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY: Roger Deakins, Blade Runner 2049
BEST EDITING: Jonathan Amos and Paul Machliss, Baby Driver
BEST ART DIRECTION: Blade Runner 2049
BEST ORIGINAL SCORE: Johnny Greenwood, Phantom Thread
MOST PROMISING PERFORMER: Timothee Chalamet, Call Me By Your Name
MOST PROMISING FILMMAKER: Greta Gerwig, Lady Bird