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.
- Force Majeure
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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?
- Party Girl
- The Tribe
- 10,000 KM
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.
- 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.