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L.A. Critics plant flag on 'Iwo Jima' - The Hollywood Reporter 12/11/06


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  • L.A. Critics plant flag on 'Iwo Jima' - The Hollywood Reporter 12/11/06

    L.A. Critics plant flag on 'Iwo Jima'

    By Kirk Honeycutt
    The Hollywood Reporter
    Dec 11, 2006

    The Los Angeles Film Critics Assn. was in the mood for reality as its top honors went to pictures based on historical events.

    In its voting Sunday, the group selected Clint Eastwood's "Letters From Iwo Jima," the account of that famous World War II battle as seen from the Japanese side, as best picture, with runner-up going to "The Queen," a contemporary story of the British monarchy.

    Meanwhile, critics voted Paul Greengrass best director for the Sept. 11 mid-air drama "United 93." Eastwood finished second for his dual efforts with his war pictures "Iwo Jima" and "Flags of Our Fathers."

    The film garnering the most honors, however, was Stephen Frears' "Queen," with four awards. The film was honored for best actress, Helen Mirren as Queen Elizabeth II; supporting actor, Michael Sheen as British Prime Minister Tony Blair; screenwriter, Peter Morgan; and Alexandre Desplat for best music.

    As best actor, the group added spice to its annual awards banquet by voting a tie: Sacha Baron Cohen in the politically incorrect, ambush-documentary satire "Borat" and Forest Whitaker as crazed Ugandan dictator Idi Amin in "The Last King of Scotland."

    The runner-up for best actress was Penelope Cruz as a mother suffering from a ghost and much domestic melodrama in "Volver."

    In the two supporting actor categories, the critics tossed a wide net, with dozens of performances garnering votes. The surprise winner for supporting actress was Luminita Gheorghiu as the ambulance nurse in "The Death of Mr. Lazarescu." Jennifer Hudson's brassy debut performance in "Dreamgirls" was runner-up.

    For supporting actor, coming in second to Sheen was Sergi Lopez, who played the fascist villain in "Pan's Labyrinth."

    For screenplay, Michael Arndt came in second for "Little Miss Sunshine," his comical tale of a dysfunctional family.

    The group's New Generation award went to the team behind "Sunshine," directors Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris and Arndt.

    In the foreign-language film category, Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's penetrating melodrama about the East German secret police, "The Lives of Others," took top honors, with Pedro Almodovar's "Volver" finishing second.

    Documentary honors went to Davis Guggenheim's "An Inconvenient Truth," about former Vice President Al Gore's campaign for understanding and enlightenment on global warming. Runner-up was Hubert Sauper's "Darwin's Nightmare."

    For cinematography, Emmanuel Lubezki took top honors for his dark, moody and epic camerawork in "Children of Men." Runner-up was Tom Stern for the near black-and-white cinematography in Eastwood's "Flags" and "Iwo Jima."

    In animation, the critics applauded George Miller's penguin fantasia "Happy Feet" over John Lasseter and Joe Ranft's "Cars."
    "If you don't know how to draw, you don't belong in this building" - John Lasseter 2006

  • #2
    Re: L.A. Critics plant flag on 'Iwo Jima' - The Hollywood Reporter 12/11/06

    AFI honors 'Letters from Iwo Jima'

    LOS ANGELES, Dec. 10 (UPI) -- Clint Eastwood's "Letters from Iwo Jima" added to its growing list of honors Sunday when the American Film Institute named it one of the year's 10 best films.

    The movie, a companion piece to Eastwood's "Flags of Our Fathers," is an account of the pivotal World War II battle for control of the island of Iwo Jima. It was named best picture last week by the National Board of Review, and also took the top prize Sunday when the Los Angeles Film Critics Association announced its annual film awards.

    An AFI panel that included director Michael Apted film executive Roger Birnbaum and filmmaker James L. Brooks also named the bawdy comedy "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America For Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan" to its 10-best list.

    The other movies on the list are: "Babel"; "The Devil Wears Prada"; "Dreamgirls"; "United 93"; "Inside Man"; "Happy Feet"; "Half Nelson"; and "Little Miss Sunshine."

    The organization also named its selections for the 10 best television shows of 2006: "24"; "Dexter"; "Battlestar Gallactica"; "The Office"; "The West Wing"; "The Wire"; "Elizabeth I"; "Heroes"; "Friday Night Lights"; and "South Park."
    "If you don't know how to draw, you don't belong in this building" - John Lasseter 2006


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