Boston Critics like to go their own way.
Marking themselves as perhaps the artiest of critics groups, the Boston Society of Film Critics became the first to name If Beale Street Could Talk the Best Film of 2018.
The 1970s elegaic racial drama from director Barry Jenkins (Moonlight) is a lush piece of classical filmmaking, a cinephiles dream, very much in the mold of their choice last year, Phantom Thread (also an anomaly among critics groups).
Doubling down on that “elite of the elite” brand, the BSFC chose the Japanese drama Shoplifters as the Best Film Runner-Up, also citing it for Best Ensemble Cast, Best Foreign-Langauge Film, and Best Actress Runner-Up Sakura Ando.
Meanwhile, heretofore critics fave Roma was only tagged once, for Alfonso Cuarón’s cinematography. He was denied Best Director, which went to Lynne Ramsey for her Joaquin Phoenix PTSD indie thriller You Were Never Really Here. Cuarón didn’t even get Foreign film Runner-Up, which went to Poland’s Cold War. Between that and the Director prize to Ramsey, that’s some serious film snobbery right there (and to be clear – that’s praise, not a perjorative).
Perhaps the most arcane choice of all: Supporting Actress Runner-Up J. Smith-Cameron for Nancy, a performance or film that isn’t even on my radar. Throw in the under-the-radar John C. Reilly pick for Best Actor while your at it; he won for his “hardy” role in the biopic Stan & Ollie.
Suffice it to say, don’t count on the Boston Critics to be your Oscar precursor. This reads more like a list of future additions to the Criterion Collection.
Here’s the BSFC’s full list of winners and runners-up.
BOSTON SOCIETY OF FILM CRITICS
Best Film: If Beale Street Could Talk
Runner Up: Shoplifters
Best Director: Lynne Ramsay, You Were Never Really Here
Runner Up: Yorgos Lanthimos, The Favourite
Best Actor: John C. Reilly, Stan & Ollie
Runner Up: Ethan Hawke, First Reformed
Best Actress: Melissa McCarthy, Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Runner Up: Sakura Ando, Shoplifters
Best Supporting Actor: Richard E. Grant, Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Runner Up: TIE – Steven Yeun, Burning & Brian Tyree Henry, If Beale Street Could Talk
Best Supporting Actress: Regina King, If Beale Street Could Talk
Runner Up: J. Smith-Cameron, Nancy
Best Screenplay: Can You Ever Forgive Me?, Nicole Holofcener & Jeff Whitty
Runner Up: Private Life, Tamara Jenkins
Best Ensemble Cast: Shoplifters
Runner Up: The Favourite
Best Animated Film: Isle of Dogs
Runner Up: Ralph Breaks the Internet
Best Foreign-Language Film: Shoplifters, Japan
Runner Up: Cold War, Poland
Best Documentary: Won’t You Be My Neighbor?
Runner Up: Three Identical Strangers
Best Cinematography: Roma, Hoyte Van Hoytema
Runner Up: Cold War, Lukasz Zal
Best Editing: First Man, Tom Cross
Runner Up: The Other Side of the Wind, Bob Murawski and Orson Welles
Best Original Score: If Beale Street Could Talk, Nicholas Britell
Runner Up: TIE
First Man, Justin Hurwitz
You Were Never Really Here, Jonny Greenwood
Best New Filmmaker: Bo Burnham, Eighth Grade
Runner Up: Ari Aster, Hereditary
Click on links below for other Critics Group Awards and Guild Nominees that have been announced so far for the 2018 / 19 season:
Directors Guild of America Nominees
Writers Guild of America Nominees
Golden Globe Winners
National Society of Film Critics
Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association
Screen Actors Guild Nominees
Critics Choice Awards Nominees
San Francisco Film Critics Circle
Los Angeles Film Critics Association
Toronto Film Critics Association
Philadelphia Film Critics Circle
Chicago Film Critics Association
AFI Film Awards
Detroit Film Critics Society
Atlanta Film Critics Circle
New York Film Critics Circle
The National Board of Review