‘Nomadland’ Named Best Picture at Boston Society of Film Critics Awards, Paul Raci and Yuh-jung Youn Among Winners

The Boston Society of Film Critics awards is the precursor season “kickoff” for critics awards this year. The New England based group showed tremendous love for Chloé Zhao’s “Nomadland,” which took home three awards for best picture, director and cinematography (Joshua James Richards).

Comprised of 26 film critics and journalists from the Boston city area, it offered a few inspired choices for the year’s favorite films and performances. 21-year-old Sidney Flanigan took the best actress prize for her debut turn in “Never Rarely Sometimes Always” from Eliza Hittman. You have to go back to 2008 when the group rewarded Sally Hawkins’ work in “Happy-Go-Lucky” for a winner that didn’t move on to an Oscar nomination.

Anthony Hopkins won his second career prize from the 39-year-old group in best actor for his outstanding performance in “The Father” from first-time director Florian Zeller, who also won best new filmmaker. BSFC awarded Hopkins in 1991 for “The Silence of the Lambs” in best supporting actor, one of only two precursors to award him differently than his lead actor campaign intended (the other was the National Board of Review). The last two best actor winners (Adam Sandler for “Uncut Gems” and John C. Reilly for “Stan & Ollie”) failed to garner Oscar attention.

Paul Raci’s acclaimed work in “Sound of Metal” received recognition in best supporting actor while Yuh-jung Youn’s lovable grandmother in “Minari” was highlighted as best supporting actress. You have to go back to James Gandolfini in 2013’s “Enough Said” and Lily Gladstone in 2016’s “Certain Woman” for BSFC winners that failed to get to the Dolby Theatre.

Since its September release, Netflix’s “I’m Thinking of Ending Things” remained fondly on their minds, winning best screenplay for Charlie Kaufman and film editing for Robert Frazen.

The biggest jaw-dropper came in the animated feature category as they chose Cristóbal León and Joaquín Cociña’s “The Wolf House.” Despite the honor, and having a 2020 release in the United States, the film was released on MUBI before its theatrical release making it ineligible for this year’s Oscars ceremony.

Check out the full list of winners:

Best Picture: “Nomadland” (Searchlight Pictures)
Runner up: “First Cow” (A24)

Best Director: Chloé Zhao, “Nomadland” (Searchlight Pictures)
Runner up: Kelly Reichardt, “First Cow” (A24)

Best Actor: Anthony Hopkins, “The Father” (Sony Pictures Classics)
Runner up: Riz Ahmed, “Sound of Metal” (Amazon Studios)

Best Actress: Sidney Flanigan, “Never Rarely Sometimes Always” (Focus Features)
Runner up: Julia Garner, “The Assistant” (Bleecker Street)

Best Supporting Actor: Paul Raci, “Sound of Metal” (Amazon Studios)
Runner up: Brian Dennehy, “Driveways” (FilmRise)

Best Supporting Actress:  Yuh-jung Youn, “Minari” (A24)
Runner up: Amanda Seyfried, “Mank” (Netflix)

Best Screenplay: “I’m Thinking of Ending Things” (Netflix) – Charlie Kaufman
Runner up: “First Cow” (A24) – Kelly Reichardt and Jonathan Raymond

Best Cinematography: “Nomadland” – Joshua James Richards (Searchlight Pictures)
Runner up: Shabier Kirchner, “Lovers Rock” (Amazon Studios)

Best Non-English Language Film (awarded in memory of Jay Carr): “La llorona” – Jayro Bustamante (Shudder)
Runner up: not announced

Best Documentary: “Collective” – Alexander Nanau (Magnolia Pictures and Participant)
Runner up: “The Painter and the Thief” – Benjamin Ree (Neon)

Best Animated Film: “The Wolf House” – Cristóbal León & Joaquín Cociña (Kimstim Films)
Runner up: “Wolfwalkers” – Tomm Moore, Ross Stewart (Apple TV Plus/GKIDS)

Best Film Editing (awarded in memory of Karen Schmeer): “I’m Thinking of Ending Things” – Robert Frazen (Netflix)
Runner up: Chloé Zhao, “Nomadland” (Searchlight Pictures)

Best New Filmmaker (awarded in memory of David Brudnoy): “The Father” – Florian Zeller (Sony Pictures Classics)
Runner up: Autumn de Wilde, “Emma” (Focus Features)

Best Ensemble Cast: “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” (Netflix)
Runner up: “Minari” (A24)

Best Original Score: Emile Mosseri, “Minari” (A24)
Runner up: Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, “Mank” (Netflix)

The Boston Society of Film Critics dedicated the 2020 awards selection in “solidarity with and support of local cinemas, cinema workers and all those persevering to uphold the film exhibition industry during these difficult times.” The group also took time to highlight local non-profit cinemas and ask followers to support them. They include Coolidge Corner Theatre, The Brattle Theatre, Independent Film Festival Boston, Roxbury International Film Festival, Boston Women’s Film Festival, Boston Jewish Film Festival, Belmont World Film, Boston Underground Film Festival, Boston Palestine Film Festival, Wicked Queer, ReelAbilities, Boston Latino International Film Festival, Irish Film Festival Boston, Martha’s Vineyard Film Festival and GlobeDocs Film Festival.

Visit THE AWARDS HUB to see the full list of contenders by category.

2021 Academy Awards Predictions

  • 2021 Oscar Predictions: The Collective
  • 2021 Oscar Predictions: All Categories


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