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In the Mood for Love tied for
Best Movie at the 8th Annual Awards Ceremony

Last updated: January 24, 2006
Copyright 2006 Michael R. Colford.
All rights reserved

current nominations ceremonyarchives
special awards • ballot

2002, 8th Annual Awards

Best Movie - It's a Tie!

Winner!In the Mood for Love – Next-door neighbors in 1962 Hong Kong discover that their spouses are having an affair in this intense story of sublimated desire. Tony Leung Chiu Wai and Maggie Cheung (both nominated in the acting categories) superbly convey erotic yearning restrained by propriety. Close shots in confined spaces, the deep reds used by the lenser, Cheung's gorgeous dresses, and a hot and cool soundtrack help to set the Mood.--sb

Winner!Mulholland Dr. – You have to love David Lynch. Mulholland Dr. was developed for and subsequently rejected by ABC as a TV Series because it was too dark, too weird. So Lynch got funding to finish the project, re-cut the film and turned it into one of the most critically acclaimed films of 2001. What results is a perfectly structured story of Hollywood dreams shattered. Or not. Depends how you read the film. And therein lies its beauty. Lynch does not look down on his audience, rather, he allows the films meaning to be fluid. Mulholland Dr. is one of those rare films where the first viewing serves as a launching point. Watch it again and again; each time you'll find new pieces that alter your perception of what is really happening. And while you are dissecting the film, feel free to revel in the beautiful cinematography, detailed sound, sharp editing and incredible performances. It's all there, after all, for your enjoyment.--sd

Public Winner:
Amélie

also nominated:
Amores Perros, The Circle (Dayereh), In the Bedroom, Memento, Yi Yi 

 

Best Director

Winner!Christopher Nolan for Memento - The structure of the film Memento is almost radical in its originality. Anything that different suffers the risk of becoming simply a novelty. However (like Mike Figgis did for Timecode and Tom Tykwer for Run Lola Run), director Christopher Nolan helms it so tightly, that such a frivolous descriptive never even comes to mind during the experience. Putting his own ingenius screenplay to work, Nolan fashions a fascinating and entertaining world that delves deeply into such issues as memory and revenge--and the way they intertwine. He creates a stunning tone that is carried steadily throughout the film, and draws great performances from Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss and Joe Pantoliano. --ks

Public Winner: David Lynch for Mulholland Dr.

also nominated: Todd Field for In the Bedroom, Alejandro González Iñárritu for Amores Perros (Love's A Bitch), Richard Linklater for Waking Life, Takashi Miike for Audition (Odishon), John Cameron Mitchell for Hedwig & the Angry Inch, Tom Tykwer for The Princess and the Warrior, Liv Ullman for Faithless, Wong Kar-Wai for In the Mood for Love
 

Best Actress

Winner!Naomi Watts for the role of Betty/Diane in Mulholland Dr. - Naomi Watts does a phenomenal job in her dual roles as Betty and Diane in Mulholland Dr. It took this viewer about 10 minutes into the second half of the film to realize that the cartoonishly naive character Betty was portrayed by the same actor as the hardened Diane. Her physical transformation is stunning. Watching the first half of the film, Watt's Betty is pure Nancy Drew saccharine. This gains new meaning once we learn that this is the dream of an embittered, cast aside woman. The skill at which Watt's plays both sides of the ideological spectrum is thrilling to observe. You can watch it over and over, each time finding a new element of insight that she brings to her characters. --sd

Public Winner: Gillian Anderson for the role of Lily Bart in The House of Mirth

also nominated: Maggie Cheung for the role of Mrs. Chan in In the Mood for Love, Lena Endre for the role of Marianne in Faithless (Trolösa), Franka Potente for the role of Sissi in The Princess & the Warrior, Charlotte Rampling for the role of Marie Drillon in Under the Sand (Sous le sable), Sissy Spacek for the role of Ruth Fowler in In the Bedroom, Tilda Swinton for the role of Margaret Hall in The Deep End
 

Best Actor

Winner!John Cameron Mitchell for the role of Hedwig in Hedwig & the Angry Inch - The role of Hedwig was created by Mitchell as a performance art piece, evolved into a highly successful theatrical production, and ultimately ended up on the silver screen. In one of the most heartfelt, fully realized drag characters found onscreen, Mitchell imbues Hedwig with heart and a tremendous range of emotion. Mitchell perfectly balances the line between campy fun and profound emotion, never relying on elements of the stereotypical drag character to skirt issues of love, wholeness and deep feeling. --sd

Public Winner: Billy Bob Thornton for the role of Ed Crane in The Man Who Wasn't There

also nominated: Daniel Auteuil for the role of Jean (The Captain) in The Widow of St. Pierre, Javier Bardem for the role of Reynaldo Arenas in Before Night Falls, Robert Forster for the role of Eddie Miller in Diamond Men, Tony Leung for the role of Mr. Chow in In the Mood for Love, Tom Wilkinson for the role of Dr. Matt Fowler in In the Bedroom, Ray Winstone for the role of Gal in Sexy Beast
 

Best Supporting Actress - It's a Tie!

Winner!Scarlett Johansson for the role of Rebecca in Ghost World - Although the role of "Rebecca" is the less flamboyant and seemingly less interesting of the two teen heroines of Ghost World, Scarlett Johansson's proves an equal match to "Enid," played by Thora Birch. Johansson serves as the perfect foil to Birch's manic performance, balancing out Birch's wild energy with a quieter but equally notable performance, punctuated by her dry wit. The subject matter is, at base, typical teen movie fare: two best friends graduate from high school with no set goals and experience the highs and lows of exploring their relationship to the world. "Enid" claims to be content with stomping through life, constantly criticizing the world she perceives as mundane and narrow, while "Rebecca" finds herself wanting to be more open to possibility that she might fit in somewhere. I believe that all of us can relate to the realization that you've grown apart from someone you once were close to - Johansson offers us this without resorting to melodrama or other simplistic tactics, unlike too many actresses in her peer group. --hn

Winner!Amanda Redman for the role of Deedee in Sexy Beast - Whether playing a touching love scene with Gal, or throwing Don Logan out of her bedroom, Amanda Redman instills Deedee with a power and intensity that would not have been possible from a lesser actress. The only character in the film that refuses to be intimidated by Don Logan, Deedee puts up a callous wall of defense that only the audience sees through. Redman creates a complex character, who is silently fighting tears in bed in one scene, and then forcefully making her presence known in another. When reviewing the movie, critics may have heaped love on Winstone and Kingsley, but Amanda Redman's triumphant performance stays with you long after the gloss of the movie is gone. --nt

Public Winner: Cate Blanchett for the role of Lola in The Man Who Cried

also nominated: Jane Adams for the role of Claire Forsyth in The Anniversary Party, Carrie-Ann Moss for the role of Natalie in Memento, Sarah Polley for the role of Hope Burn in The Claim, Marisa Tomei for the role of Natalie Strout in In the Bedroom
 

Best Supporting Actor

Winner!Steve Buscemi for the role of Seymour in Ghost World - If there can be any such thing as an independent film star, then Steve Buscemi is it. A brilliant character actor and always a strangely charismatic presence in any film, Buscemi gives a sterling performance in one of this year's quirkiest. In Ghost World, Buscemi plays the consummate loser as Seymour, collector of the world's cast-offs and the unexpected center of the universe for Thora Birch's lonely teen, Enid. --nh

Public Winner: Jim Broadbent for the role of Harold Zidler in Moulin Rouge!

also nominated: Brian Cox for the role of Big John Harrigan in L.I.E., Willem DaFoe for the role of Max Schreck/'Count Orlock' in Shadow of the Vampire, Jaroslav Dusek for the role of Horst in Divided We Fall, Billy Kay for the role of Gary Terrio in L.I.E., Ben Kingsley for the role of Don Logan in Sexy Beast, Timothy Spall for the role of Andy in Intimacy
 

Best Original Screenplay

Winner!Mulholland Drive, screenplay by David Lynch - Lynch's inscrutable, sexy story was originally set to be a mini-series, rejected by the network for being too risque. You can see almost to the moment at which point he stopped worrying about profanity and nudity, too, but this brilliantly dense and hypnotic film is far too good for TV. The Byzantine story, of alternate realities and unlived lives examined perhaps too closely in the throes of suicidal ideation, not to mention surreal Hollywood parties and shamanic street people, offers its actors (particularly Naomi Watts) opportunities to shine in ways one does not usually associate with Lynch's controlled and often bloodless (figuratively-speaking) worlds. Long, pensive scenes like the one in the opera house (a triumphant melding of unique sound design, melodramatic acting and exquisite pacing) linger in the mind's eye and heart long afterwards. --pa

Public Winner: Mulholland Drive, screenplay by David Lynch

also nominated: Amores Perros, screenplay by Guillermo Arriaga, In the Mood for Love, screenplay by Wong Kar-Wai, Our Song, screenplay by Jim McKay, Waking Life, screenplay by Richard Linklater, Yi Yi, screenplay by Edward Yang

 

Best Adapted Screenplay

Winner!Lord of the Rings, The: The Fellowship of the Ring, screenplay by Frances Walsh, Philippa Boyens, and Peter Jackson, based on the novel by J.R.R. Tolkien - One of the most daunting and elusive tasks in film is taking a novel that is considered a classic, nay, a bible by rabid fans and turn it into a film without losing the spirit, flavor and imagery. Peter Jackson and his two co-writers do the near impossible. They have brought to life a novel that has mystified all other film makers. The screen writers’ absolute love of the original text is evident in every page of the screenplay and this combination of love and talent has created what is probably the greatest film in its genre. --hs

Public Winner: House of Mirth, The, screenplay by Terence Davies based on the novel by Edith Wharton

also nominated: Ghost World, screenplay by Daniel Clowes and Terry Zwigoff based on the comic book by Daniel Clowes, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, screenplay by John Cameron Mitchell based on the play by John Cameron Mitchell and Stephen Trask, In the Bedroom, screenplay by Robert Festinger and Todd Field, based on the short story "Killings" by Andre Dubus, Memento, screenplay by Christopher Nolan, based on the short story by Jonathan Nolan
 

Best Cinematography

Winner!Christopher Doyle and Mark Li Ping-bin for the film In the Mood for Love - Australian cinematographer Chris Doyle has been working with Hong Kong art film director Wong Kar-wai from the beginning, and In the Mood for Love delivers one of the most visually accomplished achievements of their collaboration. Working with fellow DP Mark Lee Ping-bin, Doyle and Wong have, at least temporarily, given up the dependence on widely varying film stock textures and intense color saturation for a more unified tone, which gives its elegiac reverie about a love story in the 1960s that never quite happened a sort of metaphorical sepia tint. Doyle's and Ping-bin's camera is particularly adept at capturing the details of the many interiors in which Wong sets his story; together with Wong's astonishing compositions this creates all the space necessary for the silent exposure of the two main characters ultimate inability to connect with each other. --sb

Public Winner: Donald McAlpine for the film Moulin Rouge!

also nominated: Roger Deakins for the film The Man Who Wasn't There, Bruno Delbonnel for the film Amélie, Mark Li Ping-bin for the film The Vertical Ray of the Sun, Eduardo Serra for the film The Widow of St. Pierre
 

 

Best Cast

Winner!Sexy Beast - Ben Kingsley's commanding presence may have attracted the critics' attention, but the cast of this stylishly inventive heist movie is pitch perfect. From Ray Winstone's brilliantly subdued work as Gal to Ian McShane's menacing gaze as Teddy Bass, the ensemble work in Sexy Beast is to be cheered. Even Alvaro Monje's smaller role as the teenage Spanish pool cleaner makes an impression. On the whole, Sexy Beast is a successful movie, but wouldn't be anywhere near as entertaining without the superb work of its cast. --nt

Public Winner: Sexy Beast

also nominated: Our Song, Taste of Others, The, Together, Vertical Ray of the Sun, Yi Yi

 

Best Documentary

Winner!Gleaners and I, The - Notable New Wave director Agnès Varda, known for the past forty-seven years for her semi-documentary narrative films and her feature-length studies of art and artists, turns the camera toward herself in her latest film. More of a visual essay than a documentary, The Gleaners and I enlightens audiences about the traditional common practice of collecting crops discarded after the harvest is finished. As she begins to explore the modern equivalent of gleaning among the homeless, Varda discovers that the documentarian is the ultimate gleaner, sifting through images carelessly discarded by an unsuspecting world. In the end, she makes it clear that we all follow this practice, picking up bits of our lives in maturity that we discarded in our youth. The film is simply an engaging chat with a wise, charming, and beautiful woman. --sc

also nominated: Keep the River On Your Right, Startup.com
 

Best Short Film

Winner!tHE tOWeR oF BaBBlEtHE tOWeR oF BaBBLe by Jeff Wadlow (USA - 21 min.) – "The exact same dialogue is used in a drama, a comedy, and a police-thriller. The words, repeated verbatim, take on different meanings as the plots are intercut. A monkey at a typewriter frames the film, accompanied by a Narrator, who suggests that while language might be finite, expression is infinite."

Jeff graduated Dartmouth with a double major in History and Film. As an actor, you can catch him in various projects, including Pearl Harbor and "Roswell." While enrolled in USC, he was awarded a Special Projects Grant and an Associates' Endowment Scholarship. He was also selected as a finalist nationwide for the Coca-Cola Filmmakers Awards.

tHE tOWeR oF BaBBLe is 2001's 1st place Chlotrudis Award winner AND 1st place Audience Award Winner! Congratulations, Jeff!

Blink by Deborah Vancelette (USA - 9 minutes) – "A harried businesswoman rushes through her day without even taking a moment to blink. She should have."

BlinkBlink is the first time effort for Deborah Vancelette. A photographer, writer and actress for several years, filmmaking seemed the next logical progression. Not only did she direct Blink, she did pretty much every job - producer, editor, casting director, director of photography, camera operator, sound design, grip, craft services... not to mention starring in the film.

Blink is 2001's 2nd place Chlotrudis Award winner! Congratulations, Deborah

SundaySunday by Andrew Bloch (USA - 10 min.) – "It is 1946. A bereaved war-widow receives a note under her door. The contents of the note set in motion an event that will alter her life."

Andrew Bloch began his acting career with successes in both New York and Hollywood. On Broadway, he played Happy Loman to Dustin Hoffman's Willy in Death of a Salesman. Among his many film roles, he is probably best-known as Steven Seagal's nemesis, Captain Hulland in Hard to Kill. For the last five years he has also been Dialogue Coach for "The Drew Carey Show." He recently wrote and directed Sunday, his first short film, starring Linda Purl.

Sunday is 2001's 2nd place Audience Award winner! Congratulations, Andrew!

also nominated: The Hero (Hrdina) - Petr Zahrádka, A Man of Substance - Jana Sinyor, Natasha - Signe Baumane and Josh Rechnitz, The Quarry - Greg Chwerchak, Roadside Assistance - Jennifer Derwingson, Shoofly - Sajit Warrier, The Terms - Johnny O'Reilly, Tous les Deux (Both of Them) - Marc Beurteaux, Waldemar - Michael Blank

 

Special Awards

 

Chloe Award

Arsinée KhanjianThe Chloe Award for 2001 was given to Arsinée Khanjian. "Canadian actress/producer Arsinée Khanjian makes an indelible impression in any films she appears in, whether in a lead role, or a single scene. Born and raised in Lebanon, Khanjian moved to Canada as a teenager. After receiving a Bachelor's Degree in Languages and a Master's Degree in Political Science, the already stage friendly Khanjian was cast by Atom Egoyan in his first feature film, Next of Kin. She has since collaborated with the director, also her husband in each of his nine feature films. From the censor who videotapes the sexiest and most violent edited scenes for her non-English speaking mother in The Adjuster to the bereaved mother in The Sweet Hereafter, Khanjian consistently inject a strong dose of passionate vitality to each of Egoyan's films. A high point among many includes the overbearing, French, television, celebrity chef whose child grows up to be a serial killer in Felicia's Journey. She took the starring role, as well as a producer credit in Egoyan's examination of his Armenian heritage, Calendar.

"Khanjian has worked twice with French director Olivier Assayas; Irma Vep and Late August, Early September, and recently appeared in Michael Haneke's acclaimed Code Unknown. She was also featured in a small but memorable role in Don McKellar's Last Night.

Arsinée Khanjian in Felicia's Journey"Her most recent role is in Catherine Breillat's controversial, acclaimed film Fat Girl. Playing the ineffectual mother of two teenaged girls, Arsinée captures the ennui and barely hidden disinterest this matriarch feels, only trying to keep her husband happy. During an horrifically tense highway drive home, Khanjian masterfully keeps the mother's rising tensions and barely-restrained emotions on a tight leash to keep the audience on the edge of their seats.

In addition to her film work, Khanjian has done extensive television and stage work, most recently at the Theatre de Bobigny in Paris in a new production of Goethe's "Stella." Her next film role will be in Atom Egoyan's epic film, Ararat." --mrc

On Exotica: "Khanjian is a sensual beauty whose poise offers the viewer balance in contrast to the angst and excess of a complex plot." --asd

 

Gertrudis Award

Scarlett Johansson2001's Gertrudis Award is awarded to Scarlett Johnasson. After an outstanding year during which Scarlett starred in not one, or two, but three independent films, it seemed natural to present her with our breakout award. Scarlett made her movie debut in Rob Reiner's ambitious but poorly received film North. She took small part with big stars like Sean Connery in Just Cause and Sarah Jessica Parker in If Lucy Fell, before surprising us all by taking a starring role in a little-seen but well-liked film, Manny & Lo. Lisa Kreuger's directorial debut finds Scarlett playing Amanda (Manny) as the younger of two sisters who run away from their respective adoptive parents. After kidnapping a baby store clerk played by the marvelous Mary Kay Place, a surprising and warm relationship develops between the older woman and young girls. Johnasson is terrific as the young girl following her older sister's lead as an independent rebel, yet longing for a stable home and a parent's love.

Scarlett in Manny & LoJohansson followed up this terrific star turn with parts in a notable studio film, Robert Redford's The Horse Whisperer, so it was a pleasant surprise that found her starring in three independent films in 2001. Her highest profile of the three parts was as the high school outcast Rebecca in Ghost World (for which she is nominated as Best Supporting Actress.) Playing opposite Thora Birch's Enid, Johansson faces the difficult task of showing the audience that she is indeed an outcast, but then slowly bringing her to a place where she matures into a realization that it's time to leave the outcast barbs of high school behind and take her place in society as a young woman. Scarlett gives an warm and utterly convincing performance in what could have been a one-dimensional part.

In American Rhapsody, Scarlett had the unevniable task of playing the daughter of Hungarian parents who fled their country during the communist regime. Coming of age in 1950's and 1960's California, Scarlett's Suzanne embodies the rebellious teen, as well as a young woman struggling to understand her mother and her heritage. Despite a flawed film, she does so with grace and a naturalness that highlights her talent.

Scarlett in The Man Who Wasn't ThereFinally, in the much lauded The Man Who Wasn't There, Scarlett plays Birdy Abundas, a young woman with a talent for the piano, whom Billy Bob Thornton's Hank latches onto as a chance to do some good in the world after his own personal life falls apart in tatters. Scarlett once again plays the 1950's teenager who is quite, demure, respectful, yet this time quite normal. She quietly holds her own with the Chlotrudis nominated Thornton and brings a complex dimension to a small role. --mrc


"I'm continually impressed by Scarlett Johansson. She first caught my attention in Manny & Lo, and I've been watching out for her ever since. I think she makes interesting choices in roles, not falling into the trap of doing all commercial films, unlike the majority of actresses her age. In her three 2001 films, she offered a real range of her talents. I felt that she was one of the only sucessful parts of American Rhapsody, going beyond the oft-played angsty teen with restrictive parents, she was an excellent foil to Thora Birch's Scarlett with Thora Birch in Ghost Worldmanic behavior in Ghost World, and although her subplot in The Man Who Wasn't There never quite fully developed, I thought she offered a fine, subtle performance in what was ultimately a character-driven film filled with great performances. I look forward to seeing her career develop over the coming years as she moves into "adult" roles." -- hn

" In Ghost World, Scarlett deftly carries the character of Rebecca from maudlin high school outcast toward maturing, mainstream citizen in a gentle transition as the sidekick and voice of common sense to contrast Thora Birch's Enid." -- asd

 

Taskforce Award

Hal HartleyIn 2001 The Taskforce Awards is given to Hal Hartley. "Hal Hartley is a maverick in the world of independent film truly deserving of the Taskforce Award. With his quirky dialogue, inventive camera work and fascinating stable of actors, has built a body of work that continues to grow and enthrall audiences. Hal cut his filmmaking teeth in the short film medium, an arena he still returns to from time to time. His first feature film, The Unbelievable Truth introduced us to the eliptical dialogue, strong themes, and charming yet sometimes misguided characters that have been featured in each of his films. His follow-up film was the magnificent Trust which ranks at number 84 in Chlotrudis Awards' 200 for 2000. Trust continued Hal's exploration of truth, love, trust and the negotitations of human relationships so marvelously introduced in his first film. A fun series of short films and featurettes followed, leading up to the next feature in his growing career, Simple Men. The relationships are more complex, but the themes are still present, including Hal's fascinating look at the family relationship that are also present in all his films to this point. It was at this point that I realized something inherent of each of Hal's films that thrilled me. The journey taken while watching a Hartley film is many things: funny, ironic, angry; sad; frustrating. But in the end, the viewer is rewarded with a climactic ending that takes all the loose strands of story and magnificently ties them all together with breathtaking beauty. It is a talent Hal has flexed in each of his film's to date.

"Hal's films took an international flavor with the introduction of French superstar Isabelle Huppert as the lead in Amateur, yet Hal's trademarks were still there. Amateur found Hal flirting with the thriller genre, yet still filled with the ironic humor yet with more evident moments of sadness and powerful emotion present. The experimental Flirt looked at the same story in three different countries/cultures with different combinations of people involved, and his 60-minute digital feature, The Book of Life, an early entry into the us of digital video. Between these two inventive films came one of Hal's most ambitious films to date, Henry Fool. This dark look at genius married outright humor with moments of difficult tragedy.

"Hal's latest film features an all-star cast, gorgeous Icelandic vistas, and borrows from the monster-movie genre to create a magnificent tale of society, their fears and beliefs and the ever-invasive media. No Such Thing is a tour de force that's quintessential Hal. Utilizing strong performances by Sarah Polley, Helen Mirren, Julie Christy and Robert John Burke as 'The Monster," No Such Thing blends drama, humor, romance and dark horror to create a modern fantasy for the hip and devoted." --mrc

On The Unbelievable Truth: "Hartley's sense of humor and irony tickle the viewers fancy through tricks of dialog and characters tip toeing in counterpoint to rival Shakespeare's summer night escapades." --asd

On No Such Thing: "From idiosyncratic filmmaker/composer Hal Hartley comes something wholly unexpected: An Icelandic monster movie. But not quite a horror film. Dark, absurd, romantic, No Such Thing is quintessential Hartley (inscrutable dialogue, bold color, emotional dysfunction) but also bears the stamp of filmmaker/ co-producer Fridrik Thór Fridriksson (Children of Nature) and production designer Árni Páll Jóhannsson, whose vision of Iceland is a mossy, alien moonscape. There will be inevitable comparisons to Cocteau’s Beauty and the Beast, but Hartley eschews melodrama for a knowing clarity, and his dreamy, edgy musical score is a revelation." --lc

 
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