DGA president Michael Apted today announced the five nominees for the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for 2007. Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will be Blood)…no surprise. Joel Coen and Ethan Coen (No Country For Old Men)… obviously. Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton)…congrats! Sean Penn (Into The Wild)…good for him. Julian Schnabel (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly).
No David Fincher/Zodiac love because they didn’t send the DGA members screeners? I feel a combination of pity and contempt for those people who are too lazy to see the films they need to see on their own, and who lack the gumption to stand up and recognize exceptional classic quality when it’s staring them right in the face. This was primarily a quality-based vote, but you and I know it was governed by the usual political, follow-the-tide, don’t-stand-alone Zelig considerations. (Thanks to Cinemascope‘s Yair Raveh for the first nudge.)
A great quote from E.J. Dionne in today’s Washington Post, passed along by Joe Leydon: “[If] Hillary Clinton‘s answers come off as well- intended lectures, Barack Obama is offering soaring sermons and generational opportunity. In 1960, the articulate Adlai Stevenson compared his own oratory unfavorably with John F. Kennedy‘s. ‘Do you remember,’ Stevenson said, ‘that in classical times when Cicero had finished speaking, the people said, ‘How well he spoke,’ but when Demosthenes had finished speaking, the people said, ‘Let us march.” At this hour, Obama is the Democrats’ Demosthenes.”
Last night the BFCA’s VH1/Critics Choice Awards saluted No Country for Old Men as Best Picture, that film’s Joel and Ethan Coen as Best Director, There Will Be Blood‘s Daniel Day-Lewis as Best Actor, and Away From Her‘s Julie Christie as Best Actress.
Other awards: Best Supporting Actor — Javier Bardem, No Country for Old Men. Best Supporting actress — Amy Ryan, Gone Baby Gone. (The return of the 33 and 1/3 vinyl record that skips says “Amy Ryan, Amy Ryan, Amy Ryan”….a game of follow-the-pack, pure and simple.) Best Ensemble Award: Hairspray. (Really? Given all the great ensmeble casts we saw this year, including the Superbad guys?) Best Writer: Diablo Cody, Juno. Best Animated Feature: Ratatouille.
Best Young Actor: Ahmad Khan Mahmoodzada, The Kite Runner. (A political attaboy and a we’re-with-you! award because Mahmoodzada and his family were forced to move from Afghanistan due to fears that The Kite Runner might bring reprisals upon them from Taliban sympathizers.) Best Young Actress: Nikki Blonsky, Hairspray. (I saw the moment when the Botero-like Blonsky won — her “oh my god!” screaming was bridge-and-tunnel gauche, and if she doesn’t Jenny Craig herself down to a more reasonable proportion she’ll be shortening her lifespan. She’s a medicine ball. If Mike Huckabee can do it, so can she.)
Best Comedy Movie: Juno. (It may be the best dramedy, but the best flat-out comedy of the year was Superbad. The BFCA voters just want to attach themselves to the Juno train because it’s “well-loved” and, as of last week, starting to make a whole lot of money.) Best Family Film (live action): Enchanted. Best Made-for-TV Movie: Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. Best Foreign Language Feature: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. (A good film, but 4 Months, 3 Weeks & 2 Days is a masterpiece.)
Best Song: “Falling Slowly”, Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, from Once. Best Composer: Jonny Greenwood, There Will Be Blood. Best Documentary: Sicko. Joel Siegel Award: Don Cheadle.
Oh, and way to go to the BFCA webmaster who hasn’t updated the site with last night’s winners and hasn’t even added photos. Get around to it eventually. Have lunch first. Don’t sweat it.