The Ties That Bind: A Recap Of The 24th Critics' Choice Awards
For the first two-thirds of the Critics' Choice Awards, one may well have been excused for thinking one was experiencing a bad case of deja vu, or caught in a Replay loop that dated back to the previous week’s Golden Globes. Win after win was a distinct repeat of the previous week.
Mahershala Ali and Regina King were again acknowledged as Best Supporting Actor and Actress for Green Book and If Beale Street Could Talk, respectively. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse got the Best Animated Feature award. Olivia Colman was chosen as Best Actress in a Comedy for The Favourite, while Christian Bale was the Best Actor in a Comedy for Vice. Roma won Best Cinematography and Best Foreign Picture. And director Alfonso Cuaron snagged the Best Director award. Even "Shallow" from A Star Is Born was recognized the Best Song. Same-same, right?
Even on the television front, The Assassination of Gianni Versace and our very own Fil-Am Darren Criss took home the Best Limited Series and Best Actor in a Movie Made for TV or Limited Series award. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel was Best Comedy Series and Rachel Brosnahan was named Best Actress in a Comedy Series. Sandra Oh won Best Actress in a Drama Series for Killing Eve. Ben Whishaw snagged the Best Supporting Actor award. You get the drift.
So, were the Critics' Choice Awards going to send fresh signals for what to expect come early morning of January 22 in the USA as the Oscars nominations would be announced? And would a new set of probable winners at the February 24 Oscars make their presence felt? And who were the big winners and losers of the Critics' Choice Awards night?
Well, the first big winners are Roma and Netflix. It copped Best Picture on top of Best Foreign Film; and that must have been some surreal moment for Hollywood when Alfonso Cuarón, in his Best Picture acceptance speech, thanked Netflix for making this film go mainstream. Without a true theatrical release, Roma has won; and it’s now official, Netflix has crashed the Hollywood parties in a big way!
The second big thing of the night has to be the ties, and the two winners per category. In a rarity, this happened not once, but had lightening striking twice in a single night—only the second time this has happened in Critics' Choice history. Although admittedly, the CCA is notorious for ties, as it’s happened now a dozen times in CCA’s 23-year history.
First there was Amy Adams (Sharp Objects) and Patricia Arquette (Escape at Dannemora) tying for Best Actress in a Movie Made for Television or Limited Series. They shared the stage and jointly gave an impromptu speech that delighted the audience.
And the second tie of the night was the more surprising one: Best Actress was shared by Glenn Close for The Wife and Lady Gaga for A Star Is Born. Unfolding a prepared speech that obviously took no heed of generally acknowledged time limits, Lady Gaga was taking full advantage of the opportunity of being called onstage, and went on and on. A very canny, populist move on the part of the Critics' Choice; but I wonder if it’ll sway Oscar voting which I still see as a two-way race between Close and Colman for the eventual win.
Christian Bale certainly seems to have a lock on Best Actor; and Bradley Cooper’s chances of winning Best Actor or Best Director have considerably dimmed. I would think only Viggo Mortensen or Rami Malek have outside chances of "stealing" this from Bale.
Looking back, it was certainly a big night for Cuarón and his Roma. To have a subtitled Mexican film romp off with the CCA Best Picture plum must be a first. If anything, that boosted its chances at the Oscars; but I still think the Netflix branding could hurt it when we think Best Picture, and go beyond Best Foreign Film and Best Director.
I know we'll all be glued to the news services on January 22 to find out who made it to this year’s Oscars party.
Click here for the full list of winners
Photos from The Critics' Choice Awards official website