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Moonlight was the big winner with Los Angeles critics today, taking the top two awards – Best Picture and Best Director, as well as Best Supporting Actor for Mahershala Ali a Cinematography win for lenser James Laxton. Ali won the same award from New York’s critics earlier this week, as did Jenkins. It’s Jenkins’ third win overall and the second for the film.
Isabelle Huppert continued her Best Actress domination with a double citation today for both Elle and Things to Come. Rebecca Hall was the runner-up for Christine. Adam Driver (Paterson) bested Casey Affleck (Manchester by the Sea) who up until today was enjoying quite the run in this category. He won NBR, NYFCC, and the Gotham last week. His loss here, as well as writer/director Kenneth Lonergan, marked a total shutout for Manchester by the Sea for an award. The film hit runner-up status three times but couldn’t seal the deal.
A surprise win came in Best Editing when the seven-hour ESPN doc O.J.: Made in America took home the award over a number of traditional narrative features. It then went on to lose the Best Documentary/Non-Fiction Film award to I Am Not Your Negro but did manage to be the runner-up there. Another pleasant surprise was The Lobster triumphing in Screenplay over the likes of Moonlight, La La Land, and Manchester by the Sea. Statistically, this is very good for the film when it comes to Oscar; only four times in 42 years has the LAFCA screenplay winner not gone on to be Oscar nominated.
Here is the full list of LAFCA winners and runners-up:
Runner-up: LA LA LAND
Winner: Barry Jenkins, MOONLIGHT
Runner-up: Damien Chazelle, LA LA LAND
Winner: Adam Driver, PATERSON
Runner-up: Casey Affleck, MANCHESTER BY THE SEA
Winner: Isabelle Huppert, ELLE and THINGS TO COME
Runner-up: Rebecca Hall, CHRISTINE
Best Supporting Actor
Winner: Mahershala Ali, MOONLIGHT
Runner-up: Issey Ogata, SILENCE
Best Supporting Actress
Winner: Lily Gladstone, CERTAIN WOMEN
Runner-up: Michelle Williams, MANCHESTER BY THE SEA
Winner: Efthymis Filippou and Yorgos Lanthimos, THE LOBSTER
Runner-up: Kenneth Lonergan, MANCHESTER BY THE SEA
Winner: James Laxton, MOONLIGHT
Runner-up: Linus Sandgren, LA LA LAND
Best Production Design
Winner: Ryu Seong-hee, THE HANDMAIDEN
Runner-up: David Wasco, LA LA LAND
Winner: Bret Granato, Maya Mumma, Ben Sozanski, OJ: MADE IN AMERICA
Runner-up: Tom Cross, LA LA LAND
Winner: Justin Hurwitz, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, LA LA LAND
Runner-up: Mica Levi, JACKIE
Best Foreign-Language Film
Winner: THE HANDMAIDEN
Runner-up: TONI ERDMANN
Best Documentary/Non-Fiction Film
Winner: I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO
Runner-up: OJ: MADE IN AMERICA
Winner: YOUR NAME.
Runner-up: THE RED TURTLE
New Generation Award
Trey Edward Shuts, KRISHA
A Special Citation will be given to TURNER CLASSIC MOVIES for preserving historic cinema and bringing it to a wider audience via FilmStruck.
Douglas Edwards Independent/Experimental Film/Video Award
THE ILLINOIS PARABLES from writer-director Deborah Stratman
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THE LOS ANGELES FILM CRITICS ASSOCIATION
Founded in 1975, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA) is comprised of Los Angeles-based, professional film critics working in the Los Angeles print and electronic media.
Each December, LAFCA members vote on the year’s Achievement Awards, honoring screen excellence on both sides of the camera. Plaques of recognition are presented to winners during LAFCA’s annual ceremony, held in mid-January.
Aside from honoring each year’s outstanding cinematic achievements, LAFCA has also made it a point to look back and pay tribute to distinguished industry veterans with its annual Career Achievement Award (which is announced in October), as well as to look forward by spotlighting fresh, promising talent with its annual New Generation Award.
Over the years, LAFCA Career Achievement winners have included filmmakers John Huston, Orson Welles and Billy Wilder, actors Robert Mitchum, Barbara Stanwyck, Myrna Loy and Robert Preston, producer Roger Corman, and, more recently, cinematographer Conrad L. Hall and composer Ennio Morricone.
Meanwhile, those New Generation Award-winners who were voted most likely to succeed over the past three decades include Martin Scorsese and Jodie Foster (1976’s recipients), John Carpenter, Sean Penn, Spike Lee, Pedro Almodóvar and Leonardo DiCaprio.
The Association’s formation had been spearheaded by the late Ruth Batchelor, a writer for the L.A. Free Press and a correspondent for KTTV-TV. Opening its membership to L.A.-based film critics whose reviews appeared regularly in newspapers, trade publications and magazines, as well as on radio and television, LAFCA voted in its first batch of awards on Feb. 13, 1976 at the old Cock’n’Bull Restaurant.
While there was no official awards presentation that year, inaugural winners included “Dog Day Afternoon” and “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” which tied for Best Picture, while Al Pacino was voted Best Actor and Sidney Lumet received the nod for Best Director, both for “Dog Day Afternoon.” Best Actress Honors went to Florinda Bolkan, the star of Vittorio De Sica’s “A Brief Vacation.”
In the years that followed, LAFCA would continue to grow both in ranks and influence to become a respected organization with a reliable eye for excellence.
But LAFCA is not just about handing out awards. Over the past three decades, LAFCA has sponsored and hosted numerous film panels and events and donated funds to various Los Angeles film organizations, especially where film preservation was concerned.
LAFCA members have also collectively been vocal about taking up causes they’ve felt passionate about, from drafting formal protests against censorship and colorization to lending their support to controversial films.