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Toronto Film Critics Love ‘Llewyn Davis’

Alfonso Cuaron named best director

Joel and Ethan Coen’s “Inside Llewyn Davis” has been named best picture of 2013 by the Toronto Film Critics Association, which also bestowed its best actor award on Oscar Isaac, who plays a struggling folksinger navigating Greenwich Village circa 1961 in the pic.

The TFCA spread the rest of its love across several of this year’s top awards contenders. Alfonso Cuaron was named best director for “Gravity,” Cate Blanchett best actress for “Blue Jasmine,” Jared Leto best supporting actor for “Dallas Buyers Club” and Jennifer Lawrence best supporting actress for “American Hustle.”

Spike Jonze’s “Her” landed the TFCA’s best screenplay award, Hayao Miyazaki’s “The Wind Also Rises” best animated feature and Jia Zhang-ke’s “A Touch of Sin” best foreign-language film.

Joshua Oppenheimer’s “The Act of Killing” won the BMO Allan King Documentary Award, which comes with CAN$5,000 cash — one of several TFCA prizes with a bonus attached.

At a live vote held Dec. 15, TFCA members determined the nominees for the Rogers Best Canadian Film Award, the country’s richest arts award with a $100,000 cash prize for the winner and $5,000 for the runners-up.

This year’s contenders are Matt Johnson’s “The Dirties,” Louise Archambault’s “Gabrielle” and Jennifer Baichwal and Edward Burtynsky’s “Watermark.” TFCA president Brian D. Johnson, film critic at Maclean’s, commented: “Among our distinctive Canadian finalists, each offers an inspired take on a compelling issue—from school bullying in ‘The Dirties’ to sexual liberation among the disabled in ‘Gabrielle to epic environmental crisis in ‘Watermark.’”

The TFCA previously announced the 2013 recipient of the Clyde Gilmour Award is veteran director and Canadian Film Centre founder Norman Jewison, who will present a filmmaker of his choice with $50,000 worth of services at Technicolor.

And “Dirties’” multi-hyphenate Johnson nabbed the Scotiabank Jay Scott Prize for emerging artist, which comes with a $5,000 check.

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