‘Amour’ named best picture by National Society of Film Critics

Pic also wins best director nod for Michael Haneke, best actress for Emanuelle Riva

French drama “Amour” got a lot of love from the National Society of Film Critics, which handed the movie the kudo for best picture as well as laurels for director Michael Haneke and lead actress Emmanuelle Riva.

Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln” took the awards for lead actor Daniel Day Lewis and for screenwriter Tony Kushner, while Paul Thomas Anderson’s “The Master” also nabbed a pair, one for supporting actress Amy Adams and another for cinematographer Mihai Malaimare Jr.

The wins add further awards-season momentum to “Amour,” the Sony Pictures Classics release that’s been a critics’ darling since it bowed at Cannes in the spring.

They also contribute further dark-horse fuel to Matthew McConaughey, who won supporting actor for his perfs in “Magic Mike” and”Bernie.”

Because the NSFC, made up of some 60 film scribes from outlets around the country, releases the voting tallies of its weighted ballots along with its winners list, it’s easy to pick out the runner-up titles with the strongest behind-the-scenes support.

The Weinstein Company’s divisive “The Master” had a notable share of backers, with the title giving “Amour” a run for its money in the best picture category, pulling in 25 votes vs. the 28 notched by “Amour.”(“Zero Dark Thirty,” which also placed in multiple categories, took 18 votes.)

Also from “The Master,” Joaquin Phoenix tied at second place (with Denis Lavant of “Holy Motors”) for actor, Philip Seymour Hoffman came in third for supporting actor and writer-director Anderson was second in line for the screenplay award and third for director.

David O. Russell’s comedy-drama “Silver Linings Playbook”showed up in the running for more than one kudo but didn’t take home any awards.

The award for nonfiction film went to Dror Moreh’s “The Gatekeepers,” another SPC release, and the experimental laurel went to Jafar Panahi’s “This is Not a Film.”

Film heritage honors were given to Laurence Kardish, the veteran film curator at Gotham’s Museum of Modern Art, and to Milestone Film and Video for its Shirley Clarke project. David Sterritt was re-elected chairman of the group at the voting meeting, held at the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center.

Complete list of winners and vote tallies:


*1. Daniel Day-Lewis – Lincoln – 59 (Dreamworks/Touchstone)

2. Denis Lavant – 49

2. Joaquin Phoenix – 49


*1. Emmanuelle Riva – Amour – 50 (Sony Classics)

2. Jennifer Lawrence – 42

3. Jessica Chastain– 32


*1. Matthew McConaughey – Magic Mike (Warner Bros.), Bernie (Millennium Entertainment) – 27

2. Tommy Lee Jones – 22

3. Philip Seymour Hoffman – 19


*1. Amy Adams – The Master (The Weinstein Co.) – 34

2. Sally Field – 23

3. Anne Hathaway – 13


*1. Amour (Sony Classics) – 28

2. The Master – 25

3. Zero Dark Thirty – 18


*1. Michael Haneke (Amour) – 27

2. Kathryn Bigelow – 24

2. Paul Thomas Anderson – 24


*1. The Gatekeepers – Sony Pictures Classics – 53

2. This Is Not a Film – 45

3. Searching for Sugar Man – 23


*1. Lincoln (Dreamworks/Touchstone) – Tony Kushner – 59

2. The Master (P.T. Anderson)– 27

3. Silver Linings Playbook (David O. Russell) – 19


*1. Master (Mihai Malaimare, Jr. ) – 60

2. Skyfall (Roger Deakins) – 30

3. Zero Dark Thirty (Greig Fraser) – 21

EXPERIMENTAL: This Is Not a Film (Jafar Panahi)


• To Laurence Kardish, Senior Film Curator at MoMA, for his extraordinary 44 years of

service, including this year’s Weimar Cinema retrospective.

•To Milestone Film and Video for their ongoing Shirley Clarke project.


This year’s awards are dedicated to the late Andrew Sarris, one of the most original and influential American film critics as well as a founding member of the Society.

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