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European Film Awards Nominations

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The European Film Awards recently announced their nominations. You can argue their relative prestige, but analyzing lists of nominees is so much fun that I don’t really care.

European Film:

  • Force Majeure
  • Ida
  • Leviathan
  • Nymphomaniac – Director’s Cut
  • Winter Sleep

Honestly, this lineup is near perfect. Ida is a great film, my #6 to date (which is no mean feat in this year), and though the shorter version of Nymphomaniac is my #9, von Trier’s uncut vision will likely rank even higher. And it gets better: Leviathan is one of my most anticipated films of the year, and Winter Sleep and Force Majeure aren’t far behind.

European Director:

  • Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Winter Sleep
  • Steven Knight, Locke
  • Ruben Östlund, Force Majeure
  • Paweł Pawlikowski, Ida
  • Paola Virzi, Human Capital
  • Andrey Zvyagintsev, Leviathan

Also a good list. Locke is an excellent film (my #13), and Knight does well with it; he’s my #22 director, but he made a compelling film set entirely in a car, so…I get it. Pawlikowski also does well (my #17), but von Trier’s direction on Nymphomaniac was better (he’s my #9), so I don’t quite get why they overlooked him, especially in favor of Virzi, whose film might well be interesting (it’s Italy’s submission to the Oscars this year, so I’ll read up on it), but I doubt it’s better-directed than Nymphomaniac.

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European Actor:

  • Brendan Gleeson, Calvary
  • Tom Hardy, Locke
  • Alexey Serebryakov, Leviathan
  • Stellan Skarsgård, Nymphomaniac – Director’s Cut
  • Timothy Spall, Mr. Turner

Four Anglophone performances. Interesting.

I’m so happy Skarsgård made it on. That performance (my #5 in a very strong year) has been damnably overlooked to date, while Gleeson is my #4, Hardy is my #7, and Spall is a great actor who’s been hugely acclaimed so far for his work here, so I have to imagine I’ll rank him highly.

And I’m really glad Serebryakov’s work is of this caliber. Makes me all the more excited for Leviathan.

Another incredible performance.

Finally, some recognition for one of the year’s best performances.

European Actress:

  • Marian Alvarez, Wounded
  • Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi, Human Capital
  • Marion Cotillard, Two Days, One Night
  • Charlotte Gainsbourg, Nymphomaniac – Director’s Cut
  • Agata Kulesza, Ida
  • Agata Trzebuchowska, Ida

Of course the two ladies of Ida get on. And deservedly so–Trzebuchowska is my #4 and Kulesza my #6 (some consider her Supporting, but I’m keeping her Lead). Not sure if Bruni-Tedeschi is worthy; while Cotillard (who’s admittedly hit-and-miss with me) is in a film that I can’t really summon up much interest in. I don’t know much about Wounded, but Alvarez is apparently great.

All that aside, Gainsbourg is my #1, has been for months, and I have yet to see a serious challenge to her primacy.

European Screenwriter:

  • Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Ebru Ceylan, Winter Sleep
  • Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, Two Days, One Night
  • Steven Knight, Locke
  • Pawel Pawłikowski, Rebecca Lenkiewicz, Ida
  • Andrey Zvyagintsev, Oleg Negin, Leviathan

Again…no Nymphomaniac (or Force Majeure)? I can’t imagine Two Days, One Night is really that much better. Ida is my #4 and Locke my #9.

Anyway, Leviathan won Best Screenplay at Cannes, so I’m kind of rooting for it.

European Comedy:

  • Carmina & Amen
  • The Mafia Only Kills in Summer
  • Le Week-End

Carmina & Amen is a Spanish black comedy, a sequel to a highly successful film which also starred Carmina Barrios. Sounds funny. Mafia has an awesome title; it sounds okay. Week-End has a good cast (Jim Broadbent, Lindsay Duncan, Jeff Goldblum), and got good reviews–it just seems pleasant and…mild. So I guess I’ll root for Carmina?

European Discovery:

  • Party Girl
  • ’71
  • The Tribe
  • 10,000 KM
  • Wounded

Have I mentioned how excited I am to see ’71?

Also, The Tribe sounds absolutely fascinating. I’ll be talking more about this one elsewhere. I’m rooting for it, actually.

European Documentary:

  • Just the Right Amount of Violence
  • Master of the Universe
  • Of Men and War
  • Sacro Gra
  • Waiting for August
  • We Come as Friends

These all sound pretty interesting. I won’t detail them (you can read about them on the EFA’s website), but Just the Right Amount of Violence is the most compelling one to me–though We Come as Friends sounds–and looks–strange as hell.

European Animated Film:

  • The Art of Happiness
  • Jack and the Cuckoo-Clock Heart
  • Miniscule – Valley of the Lost Ants

I think I’d heard of Jack previously; the other two are unknown quantities (also, where’s Song of the Sea?). Reading up on them, none of them sound that compelling, but The Art of Happiness, an Italian film from the vantage of a melancholy taxi driver, seems like the best of them. (Jack sounds too twee for my taste.)

That’s it for the EFAs. The winners will be announced December 13th.

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8 thoughts on “European Film Awards Nominations

  1. Reblogged this on The Raven.

  2. I may be biased (some ex-colleagues worked on those films) but I think you should check out “Minuscule” and “Jack & the cuckoo-clock heart”. 90-minute adventures for all ages, with great score & animation. I’m thrilled both got shortlisted for the Oscar.
    Overall, I’m very satisfied with those nominations. EFA usually awards films that stand the test of time.
    On a sad note, I’m really surprised that “Sils Maria” was not even eligible ! What happened ? http://www.europeanfilmawards.eu/en_AU/selection/films

    • I probably will see Jack if I can. Miniscule…eh, we’ll see if it makes itself available to me.

      You know, I’d totally forgotten about Sils Maria. Not sure what their eligibility rules are, but even so, I wonder if there would’ve been room. Maybe if they had Supporting Actor/Actress categories Kristen Stewart could’ve made it on?

      • Yeah maybe; if that was the case, she’d totally deserve to be there.
        I love Binoche’s work and I would have loved to see her nominated, along with Assayas’ screenplay.

      • If you’re covering the aggregate of European cinema, you should probably just do 10 nominees in each category, There are a ton of other films that didn’t make the cut–White God, A Pigeon Sat on a Branch, The Postman’s White Nights, Concrete Night, etc.

  3. “Pigeon” and “Postman” were not among this year’s longlist. Maybe next year ?

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