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Aside from a few brief mentions, the strike funk afflicting the film biz wasn’t a factor at Sunday’s 73rd annual New York Film Critics Society awards dinner.

As if to ward off the labor blues, the critics society became a mutual admiration society, with adulation exchanged by celeb presenters and winners.

Javier Bardem, after receiving the supporting actor honor for “No Country for Old Men,” bent to kiss Daniel Day-Lewis‘ feet, calling him a “sculptor of the human soul.” Ellen Barkin, handing out the lifetime achievement award, lauded the “safe feeling on a Sidney Lumet set” (in a speech that lasted a dog day afternoon).

Steve Buscemi uncorked the night’s funniest lines. “The only reason I came here tonight was because I wanted to meet Julie Christie. Total bust,” Buscemi said, alluding to Christie’s no-show. Before handing out the best director prize to Joel and Ethan Coen, he pronounced himself “mildly pleased to be giving this award for a movie I wasn’t even in.”