Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Critical Week: 'Tis the season...

London's film critics entered awards season this week with the announcement of our nominations for the 35th London Critics' Circle Film Awards, which will be handed out at a ceremony at The May Fair Hotel on Sunday 18th January 2015. This is my third year as chair of the awards committee, so there I was last Tuesday helping announce our nominations at the May Fair. In the photo above, that's Anna Smith (chair of the Critics' Circle Film Section), Jeremy Irvine and Phoebe Fox (stars of the forthcoming The Woman in Black: Angel of Death), and me (chair of the Film Awards and vice chair of the Film Section). Jeremy and Phoebe offered a bit of star power and beautifully announced our nominations to a gathering of journalists. Check out the FULL LIST OF NOMINEES.

I only saw two films this past week: Man Up is a smart, lively British rom-com starring Lake Bell and Simon Pegg and a superior supporting cast including Olivia Williams, Rory Kinnear, Ophelia Lovibond and Ken Stott. It opens in April. The only CC-nominated film I hadn't seen, Night Will Fall is a documentary about lost footage of the liberation of Nazi concentration camps after WWII, which no less than Alfred Hitchcock was editing into a documentary when the film was shut down by the UK government, afraid of shaming the German public. The never-seen footage is seriously unnerving - and essential.

This coming week I have several films that I need to catch up with, including Sweden's Force Majeure, which made the shortlist for an Oscar nomination this week (I've seen four others from the nine remaining contenders). I'll also finally be catching up with Jake Gyllenhaal in Enemy, plus Stephen Daldry's Trash and Gregg Araki's White Bird in a Blizzard. Plus lots of television that's been backing up lately. And of course plenty of socialising.

I'll be back next week with my best and worst of the year. In the mean time, Happy Christmas!

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