Another day, another accolade for Helen Mirren’s performance in The Queen, as she picked up a Best Actress win yesterday in the San Francisco Film Critics Circle Awards. The Bay Area group, like other critics’ societies around the country, spread the wealth in its major categories, honoring Little Children (featuring Patrick Wilson and Kate Winslet, shown) as Best Picture, United 93‘s Paul Greengrass as Best Director, Borat‘s Sacha Baron Cohen as Best Actor, Little Children‘s Jackie Earle Haley as Best Supporting Actor, and Babel‘s Adriana Barraza as Best Supporting Actress.
Now, if you’re sitting there wondering what (if anything) the recent glut of various critics’ awards means to the Academy Awards race, you might want to check out this article by Time magazine’s Richard Corliss; he contends that critics’ prizes help guide Oscar voters who "don’t have time to catch up with the hundreds of films eligible for nomination." Corliss even rated five groups for their accuracy in predicting (or perhaps shaping) Oscar nominees and winners over the last four years. Best of the bunch? National Society of Film Critics, followed by the National Board of Review, the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, the Boston Society of Film Critics and the New York Film Critics’ Circle. In other words, Mirren might want to wait for NSFC’s stamp of approval before she starts working on that Oscar acceptance speech.