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2nd Annual Critics Choice Super Awards Winners

WINNERS ANNOUNCED FOR 2ND ANNUAL CRITICS CHOICE SUPER AWARDS

HONORING SUPERHERO, SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY, HORROR, AND ACTION MOVIES AND SERIES

“SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME” LED FILM CATEGORIES WITH THREE WINS, “SQUID GAME” AND “WANDAVISION” LED SERIES WINS WITH THREE EACH

Watch Winner Acceptance Speeches HERE

(Los Angeles, CA – March 17, 2022) – The Critics Choice Association (CCA) announced today the winners of the 2nd annual Critics Choice Super Awards, honoring the most popular, fan-obsessed genres across both movies and television, including Superhero, Science Fiction/Fantasy, Horror, and Action.

“Spider-Man: No Way Home” led the film winners this year, garnering three awards overall. The film was awarded Best Superhero Movie, while Andrew Garfield took the prize for Best Actor in a Superhero Movie, and Willem Dafoe won Best Villain in a Movie.

“Squid Game” and “WandaVision” tied for most series wins, earning three awards each. “Squid Game” swept the Action Series categories, with Lee Jung-jae winning Best Actor in an Action Series, HoYeon Jung winning Best Actress in an Action Series, and the show taking home the Best Action Series award. “WandaVision” was named Best Superhero Series, and Elizabeth Olsen was awarded Best Actress in a Superhero Series, while her co-star Kathryn Hahn won Best Villain in a Series.

“This year’s slate of Critics Choice Super Awards nominees and winners represents the absolute best in genre storytelling,” said Sean O’Connell, Critics Choice Super Awards Branch President. “It’s an honor to showcase these incredible accomplishments in Horror, Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Comic Book films and television. The Super Awards will proudly continue to shine a brighter light on the talented people telling stories in these fields.”

The full list of winners can be found below.

Watch Acceptance Speeches Here:

Best Superhero Movie – Spider-Man: No Way Home:

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Best Horror Movie – A Quiet Place Part II:

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Best Actor in a Horror Movie – Yahya Abdul-Mateen II – Candyman:

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Best Action Series – Squid Game:

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Best Actor in an Action Series – Lee Jung-jae – Squid Game:

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Best Actress in an Action Series – HoYeon Jung – Squid Game:

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Best Horror Series – Yellowjackets:

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Best Actor in a Horror Series – Hamish Linklater – Midnight Mass:

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Best Actress in a Horror Series – Melanie Lynskey – Yellowjackets:

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Best Science Fiction/Fantasy Series – Station Eleven:

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Best Actor in a Science Fiction/Fantasy Series – Daveed Diggs – Snowpiercer:

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Best Villain in a Series – Kathryn Hahn – WandaVision:

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FILM WINNERS FOR THE 2ND ANNUAL CRITICS CHOICE SUPER AWARDS

BEST ACTION MOVIE

No Time to Die (United Artists)

BEST ACTOR IN AN ACTION MOVIE

Daniel Craig – No Time to Die (United Artists)

BEST ACTRESS IN AN ACTION MOVIE

Jodie Comer – The Last Duel (Disney)

BEST SUPERHERO MOVIE

Spider-Man: No Way Home (Sony)

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPERHERO MOVIE

Andrew Garfield – Spider-Man: No Way Home (Sony)

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPERHERO MOVIE

Florence Pugh – Black Widow (Disney)

BEST HORROR MOVIE

A Quiet Place Part II (Paramount)

BEST ACTOR IN A HORROR MOVIE

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II – Candyman (Universal)

BEST ACTRESS IN A HORROR MOVIE

Agathe Rousselle – Titane (NEON)

BEST SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY MOVIE

Dune (Warner Bros.)

BEST ACTOR IN A SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY MOVIE

Dev Patel – The Green Knight (A24)

BEST ACTRESS IN A SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY MOVIE

Rebecca Ferguson – Dune (Warner Bros.)

BEST VILLAIN IN A MOVIE

Willem Dafoe – Spider-Man: No Way Home (Sony)

SERIES WINNERS FOR THE 2ND ANNUAL CRITICS CHOICE SUPER AWARDS

BEST ACTION SERIES

Squid Game (Netflix)

BEST ACTOR IN AN ACTION SERIES

Lee Jung-jae – Squid Game (Netflix)

BEST ACTRESS IN AN ACTION SERIES

HoYeon Jung – Squid Game (Netflix)

BEST SUPERHERO SERIES

WandaVision (Disney+)

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPERHERO SERIES

Tom Hiddleston – Loki (Disney+)

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPERHERO SERIES

Elizabeth Olsen – WandaVision (Disney+)

BEST HORROR SERIES

Yellowjackets (Showtime)

BEST ACTOR IN A HORROR SERIES

Hamish Linklater – Midnight Mass (Netflix)

BEST ACTRESS IN A HORROR SERIES

Melanie Lynskey – Yellowjackets (Showtime)

BEST SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY SERIES

Station Eleven (HBO Max)

BEST ACTOR IN A SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY SERIES

Daveed Diggs – Snowpiercer (TNT)

BEST ACTRESS IN A SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY SERIES

Mackenzie Davis – Station Eleven (HBO Max)

BEST VILLAIN IN A SERIES

Kathryn Hahn – WandaVision (Disney+)

2nd Annual Critics Choice Super Awards Nominees!

NOMINATIONS ANNOUNCED FOR

2ND ANNUAL CRITICS CHOICE SUPER AWARDS

HONORING SUPERHERO, SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY, HORROR, AND ACTION MOVIES AND SERIES

“SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS” AND “SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME” LEAD FILM NOMINATIONS

“EVIL” AND “MIDNIGHT MASS” LEAD WITH MOST TV NODS

Winners to be Announced on March 17

FILM NOMINATIONS FOR THE 2ND ANNUAL CRITICS CHOICE SUPER AWARDS

BEST ACTION MOVIE

Gunpowder Milkshake

The Harder They Fall

The Last Duel

Nobody

No Time to Die

Wrath of Man

BEST ACTOR IN AN ACTION MOVIE

Daniel Craig – No Time to Die

Dwayne Johnson – Jungle Cruise

Jonathan Majors – The Harder They Fall

Mads Mikkelsen – Riders of Justice

Liam Neeson – The Ice Road

Bob Odenkirk – Nobody

BEST ACTRESS IN AN ACTION MOVIE

Jodie Comer – The Last Duel

Ana de Armas – No Time to Die

Karen Gillan – Gunpowder Milkshake

Regina King – The Harder They Fall

Lashana Lynch – No Time to Die

Maggie Q – The Protégé

BEST SUPERHERO MOVIE*

Black Widow

Eternals

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

Spider-Man: No Way Home

The Suicide Squad

Zack Snyder’s Justice League

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPERHERO MOVIE*

John Cena – The Suicide Squad

Idris Elba – The Suicide Squad

Andrew Garfield – Spider-Man: No Way Home

Tom Holland – Spider-Man: No Way Home

Tony Leung – Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

Simu Liu – Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPERHERO MOVIE*

Gal Gadot – Zack Snyder’s Justice League

Scarlett Johansson – Black Widow

Florence Pugh – Black Widow

Margot Robbie – The Suicide Squad

Michelle Yeoh – Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

Zendaya – Spider-Man: No Way Home

BEST HORROR MOVIE

Candyman

Last Night in Soho

Malignant

The Night House

A Quiet Place Part II

Titane

BEST ACTOR IN A HORROR MOVIE

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II – Candyman

Nicolas Cage – Willy’s Wonderland

Dave Davis – The Vigil

Vincent Lindon – Titane

Cillian Murphy – A Quiet Place Part II

Sam Richardson – Werewolves Within

BEST ACTRESS IN A HORROR MOVIE

Barbara Crampton – Jakob’s Wife

Rebecca Hall – The Night House

Anya-Taylor Joy – Last Night in Soho

Thomasin McKenzie – Last Night in Soho

Agathe Rousselle – Titane

Millicent Simmonds – A Quiet Place Part II

BEST SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY MOVIE

Don’t Look Up

Dune

Free Guy

The Green Knight

The Mitchells vs. the Machines

Swan Song

BEST ACTOR IN A SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY MOVIE

Mahershala Ali – Swan Song

Timothée Chalamet – Dune

Leonardo DiCaprio – Don’t Look Up

Tom Hanks – Finch

Dev Patel – The Green Knight

Ryan Reynolds – Free Guy

BEST ACTRESS IN A SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY MOVIE

Cate Blanchett – Don’t Look Up

Jodie Comer – Free Guy

Rebecca Ferguson – Dune

Mckenna Grace – Ghostbusters: Afterlife

Jennifer Lawrence – Don’t Look Up

Alicia Vikander – The Green Knight

BEST VILLAIN IN A MOVIE

Ben Affleck – The Last Duel

Willem Dafoe – Spider-Man: No Way Home

Idris Elba – The Harder They Fall

Tony Leung – Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

Marina Mazepa (performer) & Ray Chase (voice) – Malignant

Tony Todd  Candyman

* Superhero categories also include Comic Book and Video Game Inspired Movies

TELEVISION NOMINATIONS FOR THE 2ND ANNUAL CRITICS CHOICE SUPER AWARDS

BEST ACTION SERIES

9-1-1

Cobra Kai

Heels

Kung Fu

Lupin

Squid Game

BEST ACTOR IN AN ACTION SERIES

Mike Faist – Panic

Lee Jung-jae – Squid Game

Alexander Ludwig – Heels

Ralph Macchio – Cobra Kai

Omar Sy – Lupin

William Zabka – Cobra Kai

BEST ACTRESS IN AN ACTION SERIES

Angela Bassett – 9-1-1

Kim Joo-ryoung – Squid Game

HoYeon Jung – Squid Game

Queen Latifah – The Equalizer

Olivia Liang – Kung Fu

Mary McCormack – Heels

BEST SUPERHERO SERIES*

Doom Patrol

Hawkeye

Loki

Lucifer

Superman & Lois

WandaVision

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPERHERO SERIES*

Paul Bettany – WandaVision

Tom Ellis – Lucifer

Brendan Fraser – Doom Patrol

Tom Hiddleston – Loki

Tyler Hoechlin – Superman & Lois

Anthony Mackie – The Falcon and the Winter Soldier

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPERHERO SERIES*

Sophia Di Martino – Loki

Kathryn Hahn – WandaVision

Javicia Leslie – Batwoman

Gugu Mbatha-Raw – Loki

Elizabeth Olsen – WandaVision

Hailee Steinfeld – Hawkeye

BEST HORROR SERIES

Chucky

Dr. Death

Evil

Midnight Mass

Servant

Yellowjackets

BEST ACTOR IN A HORROR SERIES

Adrien Brody – Chapelwaite

Mike Colter – Evil

Zach Gilford – Midnight Mass

Rupert Grint – Servant

Hamish Linklater – Midnight Mass

Aasif Mandvi – Evil

BEST ACTRESS IN A HORROR SERIES

Lauren Ambrose – Servant

Katja Herbers – Evil

Christine Lahti – Evil

Melanie Lynskey – Yellowjackets

Kate Siegel – Midnight Mass

Samantha Sloyan – Midnight Mass

BEST SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY SERIES

Foundation

Resident Alien

Snowpiercer

Star Trek: Discovery

Station Eleven

The Witcher

BEST ACTOR IN A SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY SERIES

Henry Cavill – The Witcher

Daveed Diggs – Snowpiercer

Matthew Goode – A Discovery of Witches

Jared Harris – Foundation

Lee Pace – Foundation

Alan Tudyk – Resident Alien

BEST ACTRESS IN A SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY SERIES

Mackenzie Davis – Station Eleven

Laura Donnelly – The Nevers

Sonequa Martin-Green – Star Trek: Discovery

Teresa Palmer – A Discovery of Witches

Jodie Whittaker – Doctor Who

Alison Wright – Snowpiercer

BEST VILLAIN IN A SERIES

Vincent D’Onofrio – Hawkeye

Michael Emerson – Evil

Kathryn Hahn – WandaVision

Joshua Jackson – Dr. Death

Jonathan Majors – Loki

Samantha Sloyan – Midnight Mass

Top 10 Best Films of 2021

10. West Side Story (2021)

I didn’t think we needed a remake of “West Side Story.” Turns out we needed Steven Spielberg’s remake! I’ll admit, at the start of the film I was thinking “What is happening?” I didn’t appreciate what the choreography was saying right away. But about 15 minutes into the movie, I was hooked. Spielberg created a beautiful musical with a modern-day Romeo and Juliet tale that’s sadly still relevant.

9. Pig

“Pig” is the sleeper hit that has stayed with me since viewing it earlier this year. The film follows a truffle hunter (Nicolas Cage) who lives alone in the Oregonian wilderness, but must return to Portland in search of his beloved, stolen, truffle pig. I didn’t know much going into this movie, but I was quickly reminded of what a talented actor Nicolas Cage is. Even though he’s had some questionable roles, “Pig” solidifies him as one of the greats. I love the simplicity of the story, and the power behind all the performances; especially, Alex Wolff, who plays opposite Cage. You’d expect this film to go full on “John Wick”, but instead it’s more of a subtle human, drama of a man living with regret and grief.  

8. A Hero

Over the years, director Asghar Farhadi has tried to create empathy between audiences and the characters he writes. In his newest film, “A Hero”, we follow Rahim (Amir Jadidi) – A man who was in prison for unpaid debt. During his two-day leave he tries to end his prison time, but things get a little out of hand. “A Hero” is another fantastic piece of work by Farhadi. He continues to keep audiences on the edge of their seat as he constructs an intricate story that powerfully showcases manipulation through social media

7. Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” is another notch in the Marvel belt of quality superhero movies with fleshed out characters and heartfelt stories. In this film, Shang Chi has been secretly going by the name Shawn (Simu Liu), and spending most of his time with his best friend, Katy (Awkwafina), as a valet in San Francisco. But when they are unexpectedly attacked by his father’s terrorist organization, the Ten Rings, he is forced to return to his old home, and confront the past he so desperately tried to run away from. The film provides a well-thought-out storyline with an emotional backstory. It stuns visually with its seamless choreography and electrifying special effects. It is also the Asian-inspired action flick audiences have been needing to see as Disney continues to successfully showcase diversity and inclusion in their productions.  

6. Don’t Look Up

When two scientists (Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Lawrence) discover a comet will soon destroy the Earth, they try everything they can to warn the world and prevent the destruction. But for some reason, people won’t take it seriously. What was intended to be a social commentary on climate change, happens to also relate to our current pandemic and how society chooses to deal with or ignore a global issue. Director/writer Adam McKay creates a hilarious script featuring an all-star, talented cast. The film is timely, terrifying, and laugh-out-loud funny. It’s a comical cautionary tale everyone should watch. 

5. The Last Duel

I have no idea why this film didn’t get more award attention! Jodie Comer at the very least deserves a nomination. “The Last Duel” is based on a true story set in France during the 14th century. Sir Jean de Carrouges (Matt Damon) accuses Jacques Le Gris (Adam Driver) of raping his wife, Marguerite de Carrouges (Jodie Comer), and challenges him to a duel to the death. Damon and Ben Affleck reunite to write a gripping tale told from three different perspectives. With their words and Ridley Scott’s masterful vision, “The Last Duel” is a painful, but important reminder of the #MeToo survivors.

4. The Mitchells vs the Machines

“Mitchell’s vs the Machines was one of my early favorites of 2021. It follows Katie Mitchell (Abbi Jacobson), a teenager who has felt like an outcast most of her life and spends a lot of her time making funny videos. She’s lost the bond she once had with her father (Danny McBride), and is looking forward to going away for college. But, in an effort to rebuild their relationship, Katie’s dad plans a last-minute family road trip. Unfortunately, this bumpy ride finds the Mitchells in the middle of a robot apocalypse, and they become humanity’s last hope. “The Mitchells vs. The Machines” is original, clever, funny, touching, and an absolute blast. This is a movie both kids and adults will connect with and enjoy.  Though Katie and her dad have had their arguments, the entire family has drifted apart by burying themselves in their electronics. Katie’s mom, Linda (Maya Rudolph), is obsessed with other families’ online personas; admiring a life she wished she had. And her brother is obsessed with everything dinosaurs. Rick is the only one in the family who hates technology and enjoys more of the outdoors. It’s enough to make you think twice before pulling out your phones when you’re spending time with your family.  

3. Our Friend

Before I gush about this film, I’m sure some of my colleagues are wondering why a movie that qualified for awards in 2020 is on my top 10 list for 2021. Well, I first saw “Our Friend” in January this year and if you check the official US theatrical release date (not TIFF or other festivals), it opened on January 22, 2021. Moving on! “Our Friend” is an incredibly moving, true story that still brings me to tears when I talk about it. Matt (Casey Affleck) and Nicole (Dakota Johnson) are a loving couple with two daughters; but when they discover Nicole has ovarian cancer, they struggle to keep their life together. When their best friend, Dane (Jason Segel) hears of the tragic news, he decides to put his own life on hold and be there for the whole family. As many times as I have seen a story about losing a loved one from cancer, I have never seen one told like this. Even though it seemed as though Dane was helping Matt and Nicole during a difficult time, in actuality, they were saving him. I think we can all relate to feeling as though a friend may not care as much as you do when you’re sick, or when you just want to feel valued. This is a beautiful portrayal of a mutually loving friendship, and the powerful affect it can have on your life.

2. Spider-Man: No Way Home

I can still remember how I felt when I first saw “Spider-Man” (2002) in theaters. I got chills, my jaw dropped a few times, and I could not stop thinking about what I had just seen. As time went on, we got more Spider-Man movies and different Spider-Man actors. I truly enjoyed them all, some more than others. But never did I think I would be treated to such a theatrical experience in 2021. I’m scared to share any details, because for those who have yet to watch, it’s best to know nothing about the plot. “Spider-Man: No Way Home” weaves together decades of characters we loved and hated to honor a true hero. Tom Holland gives his best performance to date. The film is a nostalgic gift to fans as it engages us in laughter, pulls at our heartstrings, revisits the past, and gives us hope for the future.  

1. King Richard

This probably comes as no surprise as I have raved about this movie since I first saw it. I’ve seen it 3 times, and each time I fall more in love with it. “King Richard” breaks the mold of a formulaic sports biopic. There’s a lot to learn from this film. Though it’s about the Williams sisters’ journey to greatness, it’s also a character study on a flawed man. Richard (Will Smith) is overbearing, selfish, and hard-headed. But he’s also humble, kind, and a loving father. Yes, he wants his daughters to go to Wimbledon, but his first priority for them is to do well in school and enjoy being kids. He also teaches them the importance of good sportsmanship and never forgetting where you came from.

The Best of the Rest:

11. Licorice Pizza

12. Cruella

13. Raya and the Last Dragon

14. The Lost Daughter

15. A Quiet Place Part II

16. Lady of the Manor

17. The Novice

18. House of Gucci

19. Mass

20. Language Lessons

Top 5 Worst Films of 2021

5. Without Remorse – Like a bad date with a good looking person.

4. Space Jam: A New Legacy – Do yourself a favor, just re-watch the original film and forget this exists.

3. Things Heard and Seen – What the actual hell?

2. The Comeback Trail – Luckily, for this all-star cast, most people didn’t know this ever came out.

1. Halloween Kills – An all around joke of a movie that wasn’t funny or fun.

Trevor’s Top 10

10. The Green Knight
9. Candyman
8. No Time to Die
7. The Suicide Squad
6. Don’t Look Up
5. King Richard
4. Pig
3. Spider-Man: No Way Home
2. Bo Burnham: Inside
1. Our Friend

Movie Review: “Sing 2” is an Upbeat Musical Blast

Illumination Entertainment and Universal Pictures’ “Sing 2” may still play a familiar tune, but this time around, they crank up the music and add a few new beats to the story.

In the first film, koala bear, Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey) was on the brink of having his theater shutdown until an open casting call (American Idol style) brought in various animals who were hiding their musical gift. The theater was saved! The group created a bond and a re-occurring sold out show in their small town.

The theme in “Sing” was about following your dreams and taking chances. Well, in “Sing 2”, these beloved characters are faced with the question of whether or not they are worthy of something greater.

After a talent scout dog, Suki (Chelsea Peretti), attends Buster’s reimagined “Alice in Wonderland” show; she tells him, he and his cast don’t have what it takes to make it in the big city. But that won’t stop an ambitious Buster. He gathers his crew to Redshore City (essentially Las Vegas), and they manage to sneak their way into an audition with the head of Crystal Entertainment, an intimidating white wolf named Jimmy Crystal (Bobby Cannavale). They surprisingly impress Jimmy with their spur of the moment sci-fi musical idea and mislead him to believe they know the reclusive rock legend Clay Calloway (U2’s Bono). Jimmy allows them to move forward with the show, but during rehearsals everyone seems to be facing their own obstacles. Housewife pig, Rosita (Reese Witherspoon) has to find the courage to take on the highflying stunts that come with her lead role. Rugged gorilla, Johnny (Taron Egerton) must stand up to a bullying dance teacher and prove he’s got the moves. And shy elephant, Meena (Tori Kelly) has to pull off an on-stage romance while managing her crush in real-life.

Director/writer Garth Jennings returns to make a sequel that doesn’t veer too far off from what we enjoyed about the first film, which was lovable characters performing sing-along dance numbers. “Sing 2” has a little more depth behind the melody.

As someone who is still trying to follow her dreams, this story struck a chord with me. When following any challenging career path, one of your greatest fears is that you will come to find out “you’re not good enough”. It was interesting to watch how everyone navigates this insecure thought in the movie.

One of the most endearing things about these films is the heart of its characters. Through their internal struggles they have formed a supportive friendship, and even though Buster is the most fame hungry of them all; his care for them comes first.

And U2 fans can rejoice in the moments whenever Bono is on screen. He makes a great addition to the cast and might even move audiences to tears during a heartwarming duet.

Sadly, I can’t say there’s much suspense or originality in “Sing 2”. It’s incredibly predictable. However, I don’t care! The film is much better than its predecessor. No, it won’t be able to compete with the more complex animated films this year like “Mitchell’s vs. The Machines” or “Encanto”, but it is just as fun. With so much crazy continuously going on in the world, “Sing 2” is the musical distraction the whole family can dance to.

Rating: B

DFW Film Critics Association 2021 Award Winners

SUMMARY OF AWARD WINNERS

2021 Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association

(Choices listed in order of votes received)

BEST PICTURE

Winner: THE POWER OF THE DOG

Runners-up: BELFAST (2); KING RICHARD (3); WEST SIDE STORY (4); LICORICE PIZZA (5); DUNE (6); NIGHTMARE ALLEY (7); THE FRENCH DISPATCH (8); THE LOST DAUGHTER (9); CODA (10)

BEST ACTOR

Winner: Benedict Cumberbatch, THE POWER OF THE DOG

Runners-up: Will Smith, KING RICHARD (2); Andrew Garfield, TICK, TICK, BOOM! (3); Peter Dinklage, CYRANO (4); Denzel Washington, THE TRAGEDY OF MACBETH (5)

BEST ACTRESS

Winner: Kristen Stewart, SPENCER

Runners-up: Olivia Colman, THE LOST DAUGHTER (2); Jessica Chastain, THE EYES OF TAMMY FAYE (3); Lady Gaga, HOUSE OF GUCCI (4); Nicole Kidman, BEING THE RICARDOS (5)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Winner: Kodi Smit-McPhee, THE POWER OF THE DOG

Runners-up: Troy Kotsur, CODA (2); Ciaran Hinds, BELFAST (3); Ben Affleck, THE TENDER BAR (4); Jesse Plemons, THE POWER OF THE DOG (5)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Winner: Ariana DeBose, WEST SIDE STORY

Runners-up: Kirsten Dunst, THE POWER OF THE DOG (2); Aunjanue Ellis, KING RICHARD (3); Caitriona Balfe, BELFAST (4); Ruth Negga, PASSING (5)

BEST DIRECTOR

Winner: Jane Campion, THE POWER OF THE DOG

Runners-up: Steven Spielberg, WEST SIDE STORY (2); Kenneth Branagh, BELFAST (3), Denis Villeneuve, DUNE (4); Paul Thomas Anderson, LICORICE PIZZA (5)

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

Winner: DRIVE MY CAR

Runners-up: A HERO (2); THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD (3); THE HAND OF GOD (4); FLEE (5)

BEST DOCUMENTARY

Winner: SUMMER OF SOUL

Runners-up: FLEE (2); THE RESCUE (3); PROCESSION (4); VAL (5)

BEST ANIMATED FILM

Winner: ENCANTO

Runner-up: THE MITCHELLS VS. THE MACHINES

BEST SCREENPLAY

Winner: Jane Campion, THE POWER OF THE DOG

Runner-up: Paul Thomas Anderson, LICORICE PIZZA; Kenneth Branagh, BELFAST (tie)

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

Winner: Greig Fraser, DUNE

Runner-up: Ari Wegner, THE POWER OF THE DOG

BEST MUSICAL SCORE

Winner: Hans Zimmer, DUNE

Runner-up: Jonny Greenwood, THE POWER OF THE DOG

RUSSELL SMITH AWARD (best low-budget or cutting-edge independent film)

Winner: FLEE

Movie Review: The Mitchells vs. The Machines is Heartfelt Entertaining Journey

The movies of 2021 have had a slow start. Aside from “Raya and the Last Dragon”, there’s not a whole lot of stand outs. But Netflix’s new animated, action-comedy, “The Mitchells vs. The Machines” is easily one of the best films of the year.

Katie Mitchell (Abbi Jacobson) has felt like an outcast during most her teen years. She spends a lot of her free time making funny, unique videos of her brother Aaron (Michael Rianda) and their dog. Though she has a loving family, she has yet to find “her people” that share her similar artistic interests. Her dad, Rick (Danny McBride), especially seems confused by Katie’s “art” and worries making videos won’t be a profitable way to make a living. This doubt is part of the reason why Katie and her father always butt heads, and no longer have the bond they once shared when she was a little a girl.

As luck would have it, Katie gets accepted to her dream film school. She’s already clicking with her future classmates, and can’t wait to fly off to orientation. But her father has another idea in mind. In order to rebuild their relationship, he cancels Katie’s flight; and plans a surprise road trip for the whole family to spend one last hurrah before they drop Katie off to college. An already bumpy ride turns into a disaster when the newest service of AI robots- known as the PAL go haywire, and all humans are under attack by the robot mercenaries. And somehow, the only people that can now save the world are the Mitchells!

“The Mitchells vs. The Machines” has a lot of shining parts. Directors/Writers Michael Rianda and Jeff Rowe have created a film that is original, clever, funny, touching, and an absolute blast. This is a movie that both kids and adults will connect with and enjoy. Yes, though Katie and her dad have had their arguments, the entire family has drifted by burying themselves in their phones and electronics. Katie’s mom, Linda (Maya Rudolph), is obsessed with other families’ online personas; admiring a life she wished she had. And her brother is obsessed with everything dinosaurs. Rick is the only one in the family who hates technology, and enjoys more of the outdoors. It’s enough to make you think twice before pulling out your phones when you’re spending time with your family.

I know Danny McBride is funny, but this is hands down his best role. He is hilarious and endearing. He’s the parent that we either have or we hope to be. His desire to rebuild his relationship with his daughter is incredibly moving. And his character is only elevated by his on screen wife. Rudolph plays a badass mom who might have some insecurities but she loves her children and will stop at nothing to protect them. Of course, the star of the film, Abbi Jacobson is fantastic. She’s a character you empathize with and root for.

A good number of laughs in the film can be credited to Olivia Coleman who does the voices for the digital villain PAL AI system. She’s snarky, yet serious. The very idea of her character is terrifying, but seeing such a villainess in the form of a phone is extremely comical.

The film never veers off course. From the start you’re immediately engaged by this quirky family, and quickly taken on an exciting adventure. Take in all the gorgeous animation scenery, and enjoy every thrilling stop. “The Mitchells vs. The Machines” is wild and fun ride everyone should take! 

Rating: 5/5

www.netflix.com/TheMitchellsVsTheMachines

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