12:15 pm: David O. Russell‘s American Hustle has won the Best Picture award from the New York Film Critics Circle. I wouldn’t have called this — it’s quite a surprise. 12 Years A Slave was obviously a contender but…well, we can guess what happened and why. I can’t wait to hear the backstory. How strong was Scorsese’s Wolf of Wall Street? How staunch was the resistance to it? A voice is still telling me that Hustle won partly due to an “anything but 12 Years A Slave because it’s too punishing to sit through” sentiment. I don’t know anything, haven’t been told this. Hustle is a very good film. I’m just talking about insect antennae vibrations.
11:29 am: Robert Redford, HE’s personal favorite, has won the NYFCC’s Best Actor award for his performance in All Is Lost. Okay, now he’s rock solid with the Academy. He’s not going to get bumped. An Academy guy told me last night he thinks Wolf of Wall Street‘s Leonardo DiCaprio might not push his way in after all…what?
10:53 am: The generic, across-the-board default choice for Best Actress — Blue Jasmine‘s Cate Blanchett — has prevailed among NYFCC members. Congrats to Cate, and a respectful salute to her (and Woody Allen‘s) decision to perform that third-act scene with unmissable underarm perspiration stains. Earlier: I’m going to lose it if the NYFCC “softie” contingent pushes through a Best Actress won for Philomena‘s Judi Dench.
10:46 am: Twitter outrage about N’yongo snub + white guilt kicks in among New York Film Critics Circle, and the beneficiary is 12 Years A Slave helmer Steve McQueen winning for Best Director. Fine, approved — they got this one right. Obviously this indicates a 12 Years A Slave Best Picture win but…
10:17 am: American Hustle‘s Jennifer Lawrence takes the Best Supporting Actress award. No strong argument against this but I was expecting 12 Years A Slave‘s Lupita N’yongo to win. There is clearly a level of anti-Slave sentiment poking through here. Again — no dispute with Lawrence winning, but the soul and ache and gravitas delivered by N’yongo is undeniable. I for one would have voted and lobbied for her.