Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse Swings Into The Hearts of the Utah Film Critics!


On Sunday, the Utah Film Critics reminded me why I love awards season.

After a few weeks of the same three or four films winning award after award, the Utah Film Critics decided to go against the conventional wisdom and, as best picture of 2018, they selected the animated film, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse!

Obviously, the Utah Film Critics aren’t as influential as the National Board of Review or the Golden Globes or even the Critics Choice Awards.  If I had to choose between the two, I’d say that Black Panther has a far better chance of becoming the first comic book movie to be nominated for best picture.  Still, it’s always fun to play what if.

(Also, Utah deserves credit for giving acting awards to both Elsie Fisher and Hugh Grant.)

Anyway, here are all the winners out of Utah!

Best Picture: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (RU: Roma)

Best Animated Feature: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (RU: none)

Best Documentary Feature: Won’t You Be My Neighbor? (RU: Minding the Gap)

Best Non-English Language Feature: Roma (RU: Burning)

Best Director: Alfonso Cuarón, Roma (RU: Ryan Coogler, Black Panther)

Best Actor: Ethan Hawke, First Reformed (RU: Christian Bale, Vice)

Best Actress: Elsie Fisher, Eighth Grade (RU: Lady Gaga, A Star Is Born)

Best Supporting Actor (tie): Hugh Grant, Paddington 2 and Russell Hornsby, The Hate U Give

Best Supporting Actress: Olivia Colman, The Favourite (RU: Elizabeth Debicki, Widows)

Best Original Screenplay: Bo Burnham, Eighth Grade (RU: Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara, The Favourite)

Best Adapted Screenplay: Phil Lord & Rodney Rothman, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (RU: Audrey Wells, The Hate U Give)

Best Cinematography: Alfonso Cuarón, Roma (RU: Rob Hardy, Annihilation)

Best Original Score: Geoff Barrow & Ben Salisbury, Annihilation (RU: Nicholas Britell, If Beale Street Could Talk)

The New York Film Critics Circle Honors Roma, Hawke, and Hall!


The New York Film Critics Circle announced their picks for the best of 2018 earlier today.  The victories for Roma, Regina King, and Richard E. Grant are not surprising, as all three of them have been getting awards buzz for months.

Ethan Hawke’s victory for First Reformed is a bit more surprising because, even though his performance was widely acclaimed, I think a lot of people assumed that First Reformed came out too early in the year to be an awards contender.  (That’s proving to not be the case, which is a good thing because Hawke’s performance definitely deserves consideration.)

The biggest surprise was Regina Hall’s victory for Support the Girls, a film that I haven’t seen yet,  Is this going to lead to Oscar glory or is this going to be one of those fluke awards that occasionally happens during awards season?  Time will tell but it’s unexpected awards like this that make me love this time of year.

(And yes, I will be watching Support the Girls as soon as I can.  That’s another good thing about awards season.  It can inspire you to take a chance on movies that you might otherwise have missed.)

BEST PICTURE: “Roma” (Netflix)
BEST DIRECTOR: Alfonso Cuaron, “Roma” (Netflix)
BEST ACTOR: Ethan Hawke, “First Reformed” (A24)
BEST ACTRESS: Regina Hall, “Support the Girls” (Magnolia Pictures)
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR: Richard E. Grant, “Can You Ever Forgive Me?” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Regina King, “If Beale Street Could Talk” (Annapurna Pictures)
BEST SCREENPLAY: “First Reformed” by Paul Schrader (A24)
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY: Alfonso Cuaron, “Roma” (Netflix)
BEST ANIMATED FILM: “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” by Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman (Sony Pictures Animation)
BEST NON-FICTION AWARD: “Minding the Gap” by Bing Liu (Hulu)
BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM: “Cold War” by Pawel Pawlikowski – Poland (Amazon Studios)
BEST FIRST FILM: Bo Burnham, “Eighth Grade” (A24)
SPECIAL AWARD: David Schwartz, stepping down as Chief Film Curator at Museum of the Moving Image after 33 years AND Kino Classics Box Set “Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers”