'United 93' wins NY, D.C. prizes; 'Departed' is tops in Boston

Rollin’, rollin’, rollin’, keep those dogies rollin’, critics’ groups across the country keep rollin’ out their prizes for the best picture of 2006. (Sorry, that was weak. I just like that song. Whatever.) Anyway, The New York Film Critics Circle (doesn’t "Circle" sound exclusive, like there’s some reviewers standing outside it, longing in futility to enter?) has chosen United 93 as the year’s best film, while spreading the wealth in the acting and directing categories; the group’s other top prizes went to The Last King of Scotland‘s Forest Whitaker (Best Actor), The Queen‘s Helen Mirren (Best Actress); The Departed‘s Martin Scorsese (Best Director); Little Children‘s Jackie Earle Haley (Best Supporting Actor), and Dreamgirls‘ Jennifer Hudson (Best Supporting Actress).

There was some overlap between New York’s picks and those of The Boston Society of Film Critics, as Scorsese, Whitaker, and Mirren all took home the top prizes in the Beantown as well. Other winners among the Boston Critics: The Departed (Best Picture); Half Nelson‘s Shareeka Epps (Best Supporting Actress); and The Departed‘s Mark Wahlberg (Best Supporting Actor). Boston pride in da house, people!

Scorsese, Whitaker, and Mirren made it a triple-crown of sorts by topping their respective categories at The Washington DC Area Film Critics Association Awards. Other winners there included United 93 (Best Film); Hudson (Best Supporting Actress); and Blood Diamond‘s Djimon Hounsou (Best Supporting Actor).

Comments (16 total)
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  • TorontoTom

    No sign of Clint Eastwood?!? YAHOOOOOO…

  • Tom

    the queen is SO overrated as is Helen Mirren’s performance. Why is this movie becoming the critics darling — it is well done and all but it doesn’t say anything important nor is it about our history. Looks like there are going to be no suprises come oscar time. Leonardo DiCaprio should win as should Penelope Cruz or Annette Bening and the best picture of the year should be LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE. Sunshine has made many top 10 lists — is anyone else in love with LMS?

  • Len

    Come on critics — Ryan Gosling is the performance of the year. And if Borat can be one of the 10 best — certainly Casino Royale can be considered.

  • Vance

    I’m really glad United 93 is making it’s way back into the buzz. I also agree that if Borat can be considered, why can’t Casino Royale, which was a fantastic film too (though in a completely different way).

  • khrystyne

    Does anyone find it *not* curious that the Boston critics gave The Departed it’s Best Picture award??? It’s a no-brainer, really, seeing as the movie takes place in Boston…

  • Mark

    This is shaping up to be one of those years where a performer sweeps the critics awards and then loses the Oscar. Whitaker is picking up everything left and right yet everyone knows Venus is likely Peter O’Toole, the most nominated actor not to win an Oscar, is likely his last film and word is he’s more than good enough to deserve winning. Sentimentality will win over quality every time.

  • Nick

    Well, to add on to what khrystyne said, anyone find it *not* curious that Washington DC and New York named United 93 the Best Film of the year, being that 9/11 affected both New York and Washington DC. Philadelphia might also follow suit (if Rocky Balboa doesn’t win).

  • zee

    I really did think Wahlberg should’ve been noticed in “the departed” – even if it was just by the Boston critics – he stood out for me. “Apocalypto” should sweep….just kidding folks!!

  • Nose

    Tom, why does a movie have to say something important or be about ‘our history’ in order to be considered for awards? It is an (apparent) accurate look at the Queen in the time surrounding Diana’s death. I don’t think it is pretending to be anything else.
    That being said, I loved Little Miss Sunshine, and hope it does well, same for the Departed and Half Nelson. Ryan Gosling should definitely be considered for a Best Actor nod.

  • Matt

    Remember Jodie Foster in Inside Man?! Deliciously wicked! And the guy who played Elias in Clerks 2! Both deserve Sup. Actor recognition.

  • Billy

    I dunno, Tom. I think The Queen is actually quite relevant historically. Especially considering that it depicts one of the largest news events of the past decade or so.
    Themes include the decline of empire, the obsession with celebrity, the relationship between a ruler and his/her people. Its pretty hard to say that these are not of vital interest to Americans today. Well, at least as relevant as any themes in “Dreamgirls” or “The Departed,” two other movies picking up buzz.
    Besides which, being historically important should not be required for awards consideration in the first place.

  • Rahul

    I’m so happy that the critics are remembering ‘United 93′ unlike a writer for this magazine who didn’t even put it down as a long shot. How could you miss that Dave Karger?

  • PJ

    YEAH United 93. By far, the best tribute to the event. Its gotta win Best picture or Best Director. It just has to.

  • Mark

    Okay, I just have to ask: am I the only person who thinks United 93 is a really, really, really bad movie?

  • xEx

    Does this mean Dame Mirren is a lock to win? any chance for Meryl Streep? :)

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