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Ruh Roh. Yet Another New Critics Group Predicting the Oscars!

I had a dream that precursor awards would be... so different from Oscar punditryYou know how we're always complaining about there being way too many critics groups? Well now Boston has a second group. The Boston Online Film Critics Association -- not to be confused with the 32 year running Boston Society of Film Critics -- was formed this summer and from the looks of their first prizes they're looking to be seen as an Oscar bellwether (sigh) with their prizes going to all the arguable front runners at the moment: Picture & Director and Actress: Zero Dark Thirty by Kathryn Bigelow starring Jessica Chastain; Actor and Supporting Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis and Tommy Lee Jones in Lincoln; Supporting Actress: Anne Hathway in Les Misérables.

I'd type up the rest but I can't go on! Someone save me from the hive mind. I don't want to be assimilated. Will the LAFCA make interesting choices tomorrow? 

I should probably note for fairness sake that their top ten list is not entirely Oscar predictive: Zero Dark Thirty, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Lincoln, Moonrise Kingdom, Django Unchained Oslo August 31st, Holy Motors, The Master, Argo, Cloud Atlas

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    Ruh Roh. Yet Another New Critics Group Predicting the Oscars! - Blog - The Film Experience

Reader Comments (22)

Geesh. Why even start a new critics group if you're just going to give out your prizes to a slate of winners a computer algorithm could put together based on other critics groups and online predictions?

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterWill h

LAFCA is usuallly more adventurous with their choices in the acting categories, so I'm going to take two wild guesses and say they give Actor and Actress to Denis Lavant and Emmanuelle Riva, respectively.

I also have a feeling that if The Master makes a splash anywhere, it'll be here. And the interesting thing about how these critic groups work is that they already know who and what won at the previous critics awards, so there may be an element of actively wanting to go against the grain and NOT award Zero Dark Thirty. So I'd say there's a decent shot that The Master could take Picture and/or Director tomorrow.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEdwin

<I>And the interesting thing about how these critic groups work is that they already know who and what won at the previous critics awards, so there may be an element of actively wanting to go against the grain and NOT award Zero Dark Thirty.

That didn't really come into play with The Artist or The Social Network, among others.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSean C.

I hope tomorrow has some surprises. I am already bored with award season and the first week isn't even done yet. I thought this was supposed to be a great year for movies and was expecting a nail bitter all the way until Oscar evening. Let's hope LAFCA spices things up.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCengiz

At least they gave Best Cinematography to Roger Deakins and Animated Picture to Paranorman, I'll give them that.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJim

I don't get why people complain about this. You know it happens every year what's the point of complaining??? We mostly know the winners before nominations are announced. I just try to enjoy the films.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa

Yay - Cloud Atlas got a mention!

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAndy


December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStu

FYI: Laura Dern is being campaigned with Amy Adams jointly for Sup. Actress for The Master. I know she's not bloody likely to make it anywhere except SAG ensemble, but it's nice to know she wasn't forgotten for her extended cameo.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered Commenter3rtful

I like their top 10 list. There are some surprises there, like Holy Motors and Cloud Atlas. And I'm okay with Zero Dark 30 winning a bunch of precursors, because otherwise it would be so convenient to forget it.

I'd agree that the LA critics might go with Amour, or Holy Motors, or The Master, although ZD30 does also seem like the kind of thing they'd like.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteradri

great to see some Cloud Atlas love, maybe it's not a top 10 material, but far better than the panning it receives!

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterlasttimeisaw

I get really confused at the cries of "Bah, critic groups predicting Oscar" - especially so early. There have been only two critics' award (I think) before this, and Oscar nods are way off. Is it out of the realm of question to believe that this might be their legitimate "best of" choices"? I mean, if the only reason they should choose different is to be different doesn't that essentially make the "awardage" even more synthetic?

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew K.

Sean C.- I'll give you The Social Network, but they actually didn't give their Best Picture prize to The Artist. And they named WALL-E Best Picture in 2008, so they don't always go with the flow. One needs only to look at their last three choices for Best Actress to see that the LAFCA is clearly capable of making less obvious choices.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEdwin

The Sessions is so quiet now... Maybe LA can do something about it

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercal roth

" We mostly know the winners before nominations are announced. I just try to enjoy the films."

Except it's Nathaniel's (and every other Oscar prognasticator's) job to write about the season. It gets hard when the same people and films keep winning.

My theory about this Boston online critics group is that they're bloggers who formed a group and somehow got credence.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn

The ironic thing is that this group claims to provide an outlet for "diverse opinions" in its mission statement.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

Evan -- well most critics groups are full of shit in their statement. I mean consider that the NYFCC which is totally prestigious considers themselves a "principled alternative to the Oscars" and then touts how often their choices line up. UGH. YOU CAN'T HAVE BOTH.

Glenn -- i hadn't thought it about it so directly that way but yes it does make it harder to write about. Mostly because it saps the drama away. But my frustration with it is more about the desire to see a lot of achievements honored each year. I mean there are so many worthwhile performances and films each year and it seems such a shame when only one batch of films and people win all the prizes. You'd think a variety of prizes would be the perfect way to award a lot of people for their triumphs.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNathaniel R

@Glenn, I thought this was the film experience? I thought it was a choice to write about the Oscars, didn't know it was a job.

December 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa

I am thinking the master or the sessions lead actors are snubbed cooper,washington,lewis and jackman are looking locked.

December 9, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermark

Melissa -- it's a totally good point to just enjoy the films. the reason i harp about this is that as a film critic / pundit / blogger (none of which are the same thing despite the multi-tasking) I just expect think people shouldn't get in the film critic business -- especially the "hand out the awards" if they don't have any interesting point of view. Or, with so many groups in existence, wait until you're offered membership to a pre-existing group.

December 9, 2012 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I actually started getting worried earlier this week that my top 10 list is almost all out of left field choices. I wound up in a few good convos on Twitter on why stranger Top 10 lists are important for the discussion. I understand that, but I also know what happens with the fanboys when you skip over the big film they're obsessing over. I have a bunch of the big ones to see still--Silver Linings, Lincoln, Les Mis, Anna Karenina, and the rest of the December releases--but I'm not excited by those. Holy Motors, The Paperboy, Amour, and Rust & Bone are the only ones I haven't caught yet that have my interest.

Here comes a top 10 list of indie sci-fi, foreign animation, and action/horror films. Send help. I've gone off the deep end and there's no turning back at this point. Will The Raid: Redemption still be my number 1 film of the year by the end of the month? I kind of hope so. Same with also-rans like Chronicle, Cosmopolis, and The Secret World of Arrietty.

December 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRobert G


I understand that, but then also if you're going to complain then why not practice what you preach. I mean how many out of the "awards standard films/performances" have you championed more than once on your site (not accusing, just asking). I mean so many bloggers/ film pundits. complain about this (not just you), but if you go to their sites, all you see are articles about ZDT, Les Mis, Beasts or the Master. Where's the Cabin in the Woods article or Oslo, August 31? I mean do I really need to read yet another article/Posts on Les Mis, Beasts or Zero Dark Thirty?

December 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa

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