The largest voting body of film critics exclusively in Canada, the Toronto Film Critics Association have named Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master the best film of 2012, and several times over. Not only did the deeply Freudian tale of male bonding and cultish indoctrination pick up the prize for Best Picture, but it also walked away with awards for Best Director, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Screenplay (Original or Adapted).
The Master faced competition from Michael Haneke’s Amour (which would walk away with the prize for Best Foreign Film, instead, triumphing over Holy Motors and Tabu) and Kathryn Bigelow’s decade spanning thriller Zero Dark Thirty. Anderson bested Bigelow and Holy Motors director Leos Carax in the director category. Phillip Seymour Hoffman won out in the Supporting Actor category over Javier Bardem’s Bond villain in Skyfall and Tommy Lee Jones’ abolitionist leader in Lincoln. PTA’s screenplay would also beat out those of Lincoln and Zero Dark Thirty.
Holy Motors did win in a bit of an upset with actor Denis Lavant winning for Best Actor over The Master’s Joaquin Phoenix and Lincoln portrayer Daniel Day Lewis. Best Actress would go to Rachel Weisz for Terence Davies’ The Deep Blue Sea over Zero Dark Thirty’s Jessica Chastain and Amour’s Emmanuelle Riva. Supporting Actress was also a bit of an upset as Gina Gershon took home the prize for William Friedkin’s Killer Joe over The Master’s Amy Adams, Compliance’s Ann Dowd, and Les Miserables’ Anne Hathaway.
There was a deadlocked tie for the category of Best First Feature with Benh Zeitlin’s Beasts of the Southern Wild splitting the prize with Panos Cosmatos’ Beyond the Black Rainbow (both of which beat out Drew Goddard’s Cabin in the Woods). In the category of Best Animated Feature, ParaNorman would win the day over Tim Burton’s Frankenweenie and Pixar’s Brave. Canadian actress and director Sarah Polley would take home the award for Best Documentary with her deeply personal Stories We Tell triumphing over Searching for Sugar Man and The Queen of Versailles.
The voting body also announced their finalists for the $100,000 Rogers Best Canadian Film Award to be announced at the organization’s awards gala on January 8th. The three nominees are Polley’s Stories We Tell, Michael Dowse’s Goon, and Denis Cote’s Bestiaire.
Here’s the full list of winners and runners-up from the TFCA (which I belong to along with fellow film writer Phil Brown. Our picks probably differ slightly, but our own personal best lists will be out later this week. Stay tuned!)
Winner: The Master
Runner-ups: Zero Dark Thirty, Amour
Winner: Paul Thomas Anderson, The Master
Runner-ups: Kathryn Bigelow, Zero Dark Thirty; Leos Carax, Holy Motors
Winner: Denis Lavant, Holy Motors
Runner-ups: Joaquin Phoenix, The Master; Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Winner: Rachel Weisz, The Deep Blue Sea
Runner-ups: Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty; Emmanuelle Riva, Amour
Best Supporting Actor
Winner: Phillip Seymour Hoffman, The Master
Runner-ups: Javier Bardem, Skyfall; Tommy Lee Jones, Lincoln
Best Supporting Actress
Winner: Gina Gershon, Killer Joe
Runner-ups: Amy Adams, The Master; Ann Dowd, Compliance; Anne Hathaway, Les Miserables
Best Screenplay (Adapted or Original)
Winner: The Master by Paul Thomas Anderson
Runner-ups: Lincoln by Tony Kushner (based in part on the book Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin); Zero Dark Thirty by Mark Boal
Best First Feature
Winners: Beasts of the Southern Wild, Benh Zeitlin; Beyond the Black Rainbow, Panos Cosmatos (TIE)
Runner-up: Cabin in the Woods, Drew Goddard
Best Animated Feature
Runner-ups: Frankenweenie, Brave
Best Foreign Language Film
Runner-ups: Holy Motors, Tabu
Winner: Stories We Tell
Runner-ups: Searching for Sugar Man, The Queen of Versailles
Nominees for the Rogers Best Canadian Film Award (to be announced on January 8th)
Stories We Tell – Director: Sarah Polley
Goon – Director: Michael Dowse
Bestiaire – Director: Denis Cote