Friday, March 5, 2010

Independent Spirit Awards Ballot

A few weeks ago, I sat down to cast my votes for this year's Independent Spirit Awards. Now that the votes have been tallied and the awards are to be distributed tonight, I'll reveal who I voted for in the individual categories. Hopefully, some of my choices will even win. Tomorrow or Sunday, I'll post my educated Oscar picks.

Best Actor (Best Male Lead)

Jeff Bridges – Crazy Heart
Colin Firth – A Single Man
Joseph Gordon-Levitt – (500) Days of Summer
Souleymane Sy Savane – Goodbye Solo
Adam Scott – The Vicious Kind

Easy choice here, Jeff Bridges. Just a solid performance from beginning to end. When a performance in a film comes off as effortless, you know it's a good one.

Best Supporting Actor (Best Supporting Male)

Jemaine Clement – Gentlemen Broncos
Woody Harrelson – The Messenger
Christian McKay – Me and Orson Welles
Ray McKinnon – That Evening Sun
Christopher Plummer – The Last Station

A close call between Woody Harrelson and Christopher Plummer. I went with Plummer as his performance had more of a twinkle in the eye, whereas Harrelson's left me more depressed.

Best Actress (Best Female Lead)

Maria Bello – Downloading Nancy
Nisreen Faour – Amreeka
Helen Mirren – The Last Station
Gwyneth Paltrow – Two Lovers
Gabourey Sidibe – Precious

With the specters of Josh and Enrico hanging over my head, I had no choice but to vote for Gabourey Sidibe. Otherwise they would have hunted me down and maimed me, and quite possibly not even in that order.

Best Supporting Actress (Best Supporting Female)

Dina Korzun – Cold Souls
Mo'Nique – Precious
Samantha Morton – The Messenger
Natalie Press – Fifty Dead Men Walking
Mia Wasikowska – That Evening Sun

Mo'Nique, not even a question. No one else came close to her in any other film during 2009.

Best Cinematography

Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans – Peter Zeitlinger
Cold Souls – Andrij Parekh
A Serious Man – Roger Deakins
Treeless Mountain – Anne Misawa
Without Name (Sin nombre) – Adriano Goldman

A difficult category to vote for, I went with Anne Misawa here. Treeless Mountain was a wonderful discovery this past year, and the cinematography really got you into the children's point of view. Worth checking out.

Best First Screenplay
Sophie Barthes - Cold Souls
Scott Cooper - Crazy Heart
Cherien Dabis - Amreeka
Geoffrey Fletcher - Precious
Tom Ford and David Scearce - A Single Man

Continuing with the Joshrico fear factor, Geoffrey Fletcher for Precious. Of course, Precious deserves it simply for being one of the most powerful and moving films last year.

Best Screenplay

(500) Days of Summer – Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber
Adventureland – Greg Mottola
The Last Station – Michael Hoffman
The Messenger – Alessandro Camon and Oren Moverman
The Vicious Kind – Lee Toland Krieger

There are many supporters of (500) Days of Summer and while I enjoyed the film, I thought it was a bit boring at points. My vote here is for Alessandro Camon and Oren Moverman's The Messenger, a film that looks at the soldiers who have to notify families of their loved one's death during wartime. Strong stuff, and it shows there's no easy way to do the job.

Best Foreign Film

A Prophet (Un prophète) – Jacques Audiard • France
An Education – Lone Scherfig • France/UK
Everlasting Moments (Maria Larssons eviga ögonblick) – Jan Troell • Sweden
Mother (Madeo) – Bong Joon-ho • South Korea
The Maid (La nana) – Sebastián Silva • Chile

Hands down, A Prophet. Strong, strong film. A Scarface set in prison. Keeps you riveted for it's 150 minute running time.

Best Documentary


The best documentaries enlighten me about a topic I was unaware of and care about. Food, Inc. taught me that while I might still stuff my face with whatever, I really should think twice sometimes.

John Cassavetes Award (Best film made for under $500,000)


As stated before, Treeless Mountain was my favorite unheard of discovery of the past year.

Best First Film

A Single Man
Crazy Heart
Easier With Practice
Paranormal Activity
The Messenger

It won't win, but I voted for Paranormal Activity. I really got into it's kicky little grove and thought I'd toss a vote it's way.

Best Director

Ethan and Joel Coen – A Serious Man
Lee Daniels – Precious
Cary Joji Fukunaga – Without Name (Sin nombre)
James Gray – Two Lovers
Michael Hoffman – The Last Station

Again with the fear of Josh and Enrico. Really though, Lee Daniels deserves this award. Precious directed by anybody else, would have been a completely different film, most likely one with an absolutely upbeat ending.

Best Film (Best Feature)

(500) Days of Summer
The Last Station
Without Name (Sin nombre)

Must it be said? Precious. And now Josh and Enrico can go out and celebrate.


that's J-O-S-H said...

HUZZAH! Pigs feet & stolen chix [NOT feat. potato salad] for all!

Michelle M. said...

You don't want to anger Joshrico.

Another year and I haven't seen many of the nominated films. Sigh. I haven't even seen Avatar yet.
I did watch Zombieland last night.