Will Slumdog Run The Table?

You’d never know it from their website, but I think/trust/have been told that the National Board of Review crew will decide their annual movie awards slate on Wednesday, 12.3 The LA Film Critics Association (LAFCA) site says they’ll announce their choices on Tuesday, 12.9. (Wait, don’t they usually vote on a Saturday? I was expecting them to vote on Saturday, 12.6.) And then the New York Film Critics Circle will vote on Wednesday, 12.10.

I’m rooting for a Revolutionary Road upset over Slumdog Millionaire from either LAFCA or NYFCC. Not because I’m against Danny Boyle‘s film in any way. I just think Sam Mendes‘ film needs a little advance traction to get rolling with the L.A. pueriles who are saying they don’t care for it because it’s too morose. I’m telling you, that Death of a Salesman play is such a downer — what a loser! And all those Shakespearean tragedies besides…God! Can’t we have a little hope and happiness in our lives, something to feel good about with the economy being the way it is?

I guess I can imagine Milk taking it in Los Angeles to symbolically refute the passage of Proposition 8. Maybe.

19 thoughts on “Will Slumdog Run The Table?

  1. md'a on said:

    Wait, you think it’ll be an upset if Slumdog fails to win the major critics’ awards? God, I hope we haven’t fallen that far…

  2. Predictions:

    NYFCC will pick Benjamin Button
    LAFCA will pick Milk
    NBR will be expected to pick Slumdog, but then pulls a shocker and announces a win for The Reader. (Also, In Bruges will make their Top Ten).

  3. Just because a lot of prognosticators think Slumdog has the ingredients for Oscar victory (I still believe the title is too off-putting to succeed), doesn’t mean they think it’s the best film of the year. I’d be surprised to see it win either of the coastal awards, or the National Society of Film Critics.

    With the National Board of Review, you never know. They get a lot of heat but their choices are often more offbeat than the Academy’s. Hell, they picked Letters From Iwo Jima two years ago, and their only recent clunker was selecting Finding Neverland in 2004. Plus, they picked Citizen Kane in 1941 so they get a pass for life from me.

  4. LAFCA picks “Milk”. That is what I am most confident in – and, of course, Penn.

    NBR? Who knows. But its not going to be “The Reader”- a film that is getting such soft reviews all over.

    And look for Vera Farmiga for both her films from all the groups. “Nothing but the Truth” just got delivered to all critics – the vast majority of whom have not seen the film – and it is exactly the kind of powderkeg performance that these guys like to spring out of nowhere. As well, the movie gets a pass for enobling journalists as much as it does.

    I think Langella dies a quiet death with the critics.

    Meryl wins at least one group.

    Melissa Leo another

    Kate W./Kate B./ Cte wins another.

  5. Ha! As many have pointed out, while Little Miss Slumdog may have the stuff to appeal to the Academy, it is completely out of the wheelhouse of both NYFCC and LAFCA. Milk, Rachel Getting Married, The Wrestler, Wall•E, Benji Button, Revolutionary Road, and even The Dark Knight all stand a better chance than Slumdog.

  6. I agree — don’t look for Slumdog to take top critics’ honors. But if SAG strikes, I predict it’ll be the Academy’s best picture winner. Mainly as a fuck-you gesture to actors from the rest of Hollywood. Also because it has a feel-exuberant finish, which the other contenders don’t. (The Academy fogies cream their Depends over that kind of ending, especially in a recession.) I don’t particularly like the movie, but I witnessed the fever spreading in the theater like turbo-bacteria. The momentum seems undeniable.

  7. SLUMDOG isn’t my favorite of the year, but the backlash is getting a bit ridiculous — CRASH-like? It’s not an abomination, guys…

  8. Jeff

    So true…

    “And all those Shakespearean tragedies besides…God! Can’t we have a little hope …”

    When one is unwilling to face the realities of life shown in a “RR” or other serious dramas , and insteads seeks out the comfort of happy endings, that is exactly why their harsh reality never changes….try as you might…..you can’t ‘hide’ from it forever

  9. I predict a Synechdoche upset for all!

    (I should point out that I have not once predicted correctly, but as much as I love Slumdog, I have yet to see a movie this year that I responded to as much as Synechdoche. I think actionman might agree with me here)

  10. I would be surprised if critics groups picked Slumdog for the win, since most critics have seen actual Indian-made movies about India that make Slumdog look like Pretty Woman.

    I won’t be surprised if people for whom this is their first experience with a movie even partially in Hindi call it the year’s best – for them, much of the content and setting will be novel, and combine with the feel-good elements for the win.

    Tipping my hand a bit — I’ll be championing Waltz With Bashir in as many categories as possible.

  11. LAFC going for Milk almost feels too obvious, no?

    NYFCC loves Jonathan Demme (2 time best director winner). I see them going for Rachel Getting Married.

    If Slumdog is really this year’s Little Miss Sunshine/Juno that should tell you it won’t be winning any critic’s awards.

  12. S.M.:

    It is a rollicking, kinetic ride and the Boyle direction, imagery, soundtrack and montage go a long, long way toward concealing what seem like some fairly obvious storytelling and thematic issues, some small, some so obvious I’m surprised more haven’t acknowledged them.

    In particular, the central romance seems like just so much male-centric idealization and romanticized fantasy–

    I understand the film is from its lead character’s swooning, longing male perspective, but isn’t it a bit of a stretch that the object of his obsession remains pure, in love with him (whom she hasn’t really known since CHILDHOOD), and seemingly prim and proper as a virginal schoolmarm– despite being traded on the streets and later being passed around amongst (underdeveloped, broadly rendered) thugs, pimps, and gangsters for what (confusingly) must be at least a decade?

    Kinda convenient that she’s still waiting around to be saved by a dorky guy (who looks and acts 10 years younger than her in the present day bits) that she rolled with at AGE 10.

  13. How can winning or losing a film award be considered an “upset?” This isn’t a case of a sports team taking the pipe after dominating all season. Maybe it’d be an upset if all the critics gave Slumdog 5 star reviews and then gave the Best Film award to a crappy Adam Sandler film that all the voting critics gave two stars to.

    It ticks me off that “best film awards” from critic groups only get their validity if somehow they predict the Oscars instead of just declaring what movies worked for these people versus Mickey Rooney and the late Buddy Hacket. Do you really want to match taste with the producer of Meet the Deedles?

  14. This is on the NBR website in a press release from August touting 2009 as their 100th Anniversary:

    “The National Board of Review will screen over 300 films for awards consideration in 2008. This year’s honorees will be announced on Thursday, December 4th, 2008, marking the beginning of the awards season.”

    It’s possible they expect to meet on Dec. 3 and make the announcement widely on Dec. 4.

  15. Hey Lex, try to avoid copying-and-pasting something you posted on Poland’s blog two days ago.

    Actually, just try to avoid posting altogether.

  16. “Predictions:

    NYFCC will pick Benjamin Button
    LAFCA will pick Milk
    NBR will be expected to pick Slumdog, but then pulls a shocker and announces a win for The Reader. (Also, In Bruges will make their Top Ten).”

    For some reason, everything NDH wrote here makes perfect sense to me. I wouldn’t be suprised on bit if this is how the game actually plays out :) .

    P.S. Crash, as in the Oscar winning film, is better than you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>