The Los Angeles Film Critics Association has named Call Me By Your Name the Best Film of 2017. Timothee Chalamet (Call Me By Your Name) and Sally Hawkins (The Shape Of Water) won top acting honours. Willem Dafoe (The Florida Project) and Laurie Metcalf (Lady Bird) claimed the supporting prizes.
The day’s voting, which lasted nearly five-and-a-half hours, provided the biggest bump for Guillermo Del Toro’s The Shape Of Water, however. Clearly a favourite throughout, the film won three prizes and came in as runner-up in two more. After being largely ignored by a number of precursors so far this season, that ought to help Fox Searchlight breathe a little better.
New York Film Critics Circle victor Lady Bird was mostly relegated to the sidelines, save for Metcalf’s prize.
Here’s a list of winners in the major categories.
Best Cinematography: The Shape Of Water (Dan Lausten). Finally Del Toro’s latest gets into the game, after being ignored by the Gotham Awards, Indie Spirits and New York Film Critics Circle (NYFCC).
Runner-up: Blade Runner 2049 (Roger Deakins)
Best Music/Score: Phantom Thread (Jonny Greenwood). At a recent Focus Features event, Paul Thomas Anderson was clearly still smarting from Greenwood’s dismissal by the Academy’s music branch for his contributions to There Will Be Blood. Greenwood’s work was deemed “diluted” by the use of pre-existing music at the time. Though there are some pre-existing music cues in Anderson’s latest, this time, they kept an eye on it, he said.
Runner-up: The Shape Of Water (Alexandre Desplat)
Best Supporting Actor: Willem Dafoe, The Florida Project. Dafoe is on a streak, after winning this prize from the National Board of Review and NYFCC as well. To reiterate: It seems to be clear sailing to his first Oscar, more than 30 years since his first nomination (for Oliver Stone’s Platoon).
Runner-up: Sam Rockwell, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Best Screenplay: Get Out (Jordan Peele). Finally Peele breaks out of the, uh, breakout ranks with critics, though he did win this prize at the Gotham Awards as well. NBR and NYFCC screenplay honours went to The Disaster Artist and Phantom Thread.
Runner-up: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (Martin McDonagh)
Best Animation: The Breadwinner (Nora Twomey). You had to figure Twomey’s underdog would pry at least a couple of trophies away from Pixar this year.
Runner-up: Coco (Lee Unkrich, Adrian Molina)
Best Actor: Timothee Chalamet, Call Me By Your Name. Same as New York, an easy performance for critics to rally around this year. The question that will come up going forward is whether Chalamet can upset a front-running Gary Oldman to become the youngest best actor winner ever.
Runner-up: James Franco, The Disaster Artist
Best Actress: Sally Hawkins, The Shape Of Water. Del Toro’s film is getting a much-needed boost. According to critics in the room this was the tightest vote of the evening, and that tracks: lead actress is an incredibly competitive race this year.
Runner-up: Frances McDormand, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Best Director: (TIE) Guillermo Del Toro, The Shape Of Water and Luca Guadagnino, Call Me By Your Name. More ammunition for Fox Searchlight’s Shape Of Water campaign, though the second race that stumped the LA crowd so much they had to call it a draw. Dee Rees (Mudbound), Sean Baker (The Florida Project) and Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird) were also in the running.
Best Picture: Call Me By Your Name (Luca Guadagnino). A significant feather in the cap of this Sundance sensation, which has remained a critical darling all year long and is a threat in a number of Oscar races, including Best Actor and Best Adapted Screenplay.
Runner-up: The Florida Project (Sean Baker) – Reuters/Kristopher Tapley