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One Last Critics Group Awards Roundup Before the Holidays

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by Matt Singer
December 21, 2012 5:45 PM
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Katheryn Bigelow's "Zero Dark Thirty."
Sony Pictures Katheryn Bigelow's "Zero Dark Thirty."

The holiday weekend is upon us, but before you start singing yuletide carols we've got one last critics group awards update for you. First of all, a very important shortlist: the nine foreign language films eligible for the 2013 Academy Awards:

"Amour" (Austria), directed by Michael Haneke
"War Witch" (Canada), directed by Kim Nguyen
"No" (Chile), directed by Pablo Larraín
"A Royal Affair" (Denmark), directed by Nikolaj Arcel
"The Intouchables" (France), directed by Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano
"The Deep" (Iceland), directed by Baltasar Kormákur
"Kon-Tiki" (Norway), directed by Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg
"Beyond the Hills" (Romania), directed by Cristian Mungiu
"Sister" (Switzerland), directed by Ursula Meier

There are some critically acclaimed movies on that list ("Amour"), some crowd-pleasers ("The Intouchables"), and, of course, some notable omissions, most as a result of the inherent systemic flaws in the Oscar's Best Foreign Language award. Instead of simply compiling the most respected or beloved foreign language films of any given year, each country nominates a single film as its "official selection" and then offers that up for consideration to the Academy. Which means only one film from any given country even has a chance at getting nominated; 2012 Indiewire Critic Poll winner "Holy Motors," for example, had no shot at that list because "The Intouchables" was France's official selection. Which makes perfect sense really; it's not like foreign countries produce more than one good movie a year, am I right?

Before we all overdose on sarcasm, let's move on to two more critics groups and their picks for the best of 2012: the African-American Film Critics Association and the Black Film Critics Circle. They've both got the same Best Picture winner: Kathryn Bigelow's "Zero Dark Thirty." Here are their full lists of winners, starting with the AAFCA:

Best Picture: "Zero Dark Thirty"
Best Actor: Denzel Washington, "Flight"
Best Actress: Emayatzy Corinealdi, "Middle of Nowhere"
Best Supporting Actress: Sally Field, "Lincoln"
Best Supporting Actor: Nate Parker, "Arbitrage"
Best Foreign Film: "The Intouchables"
Breakout Performance: Quvenzhane Wallis, "Beasts of the Southern Wild"
Best Director: Ben Affleck, "Argo"
Best Screenplay: Ava DuVernay, "Middle of Nowhere"
Best Music: "Middle of Nowhere"
Best Independent Film: "Middle of Nowhere"
Best Animation: "Rise of the Guardians"
Best Documentary: "The House I Live In" and "Versailles '73" (tie)

And here's the Black Film Critics Circle:

Best Film: "Zero Dark Thirty"
Best Director: Kathryn Bigelow, "Zero Dark Thirty"
Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis, "Lincoln"
Best Actress: Jessica Chastain, "Zero Dark Thirty"
Best Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz, "Django Unchained"
Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway, "Les Miserables"
Best Adapted Screenplay: "Argo"
Best Original Screenplay: "Django Unchained"
Best Animated Film: "Rise of the Guardians"
Best Foreign Film: "The Intouchables" 
Best Documentary: "The Central Park Five"
Best Ensemble: "Lincoln"

If you still need more movies and awards, the nominees for the London Film Critics and the Houston Film Critics awards were also announced this week, and you can peruse those at your leisure. Happy holidays to you all and we'll see you next week. You can keep yourself occupied until then by doing what I'll be doing this weekend: watching the trailer for Michael Bay's "Pain and Gain" on a permanent loop.

Other 2012 Critics Awards (Best Film Pick in Parenthesis)
-New York Film Critics Circle ("Zero Dark Thirty")
-Boston Online Film Critics Association ("Zero Dark Thirty")
-Los Angeles Film Critics Association ("Amour")
-Boston Society of Film Critics ("Zero Dark Thirty")
-New York Film Critics Online ("Zero Dark Thirty")
-Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association ("Zero Dark Thirty")
-Las Vegas Film Critics Society ("Life of Pi")
-San Diego Film Critics Society ("Argo")
-Toronto Film Critics Association ("The Master")
-Chicago Film Critics Association ("Zero Dark Thirty")
-Detroit Film Critics Society ("Silver Linings Playbook")
-Kansas City Film Critics Circle ("The Master")
-San Francisco Film Critics Circle ("The Master")
-Southeastern Film Critics Association ("Argo")
-Austin Film Critics Association ("Zero Dark Thirty")
-Florida Film Critics Circle ("Argo")
-Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics ("Lincoln")
-Indiana Film Journalists Association ("Safety Not Guaranteed")
-St. Louis Film Critics Association ("Argo")
-Utah Film Critics Association ("Zero Dark Thirty")

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