Florida Film Critics Circle Awards Snub Moonlight in its Major Categories

After announcing its nominees last Wednesday, the Florida Film Critics Circle revealed its winners yesterday. Though the Miami-made film Moonlight earned ten nominations from the critics this year, it ended up with just one win in its nominated categories: The Pauline Kael Breakout Award for director Barry Jenkins.

Moonlight and its cast and crew were also awarded a prize that went unannounced when the nominations were released: the Golden Orange for Outstanding Contribution to Florida Filmmaking. This came as no surprise, considering the film was made by a multitude of Miami individuals; directed by Jenkins, based on the work of writer Tarell Alvin McCraney, produced by Andrew Hevia, and starring Alex R. Hibbert and Jaden Piner.

La La Land led the winners' pool with four awards, including Best Director for Damien Chazelle, Best Cinematography, Best Art Direction/Production Design, and Best Score. Best Picture went to The Lobster, which also won for its original screenplay.
Two other films took two wins this year: Manchester by the Sea and Elle. Both films won for their lead performances, the former by Casey Affleck and the latter by Isabelle Huppert. Manchester also scored a win for Michelle Williams in the Supporting Actress category, with Viola Davis in Fences as the runner-up. Paul Verhoeven's Elle won the award for Best Foreign Picture, with The Handmaiden as runner-up.

Three films by women also scored prizes. Andrea Arnold's American Honey earned Best Ensemble; Kirsten Johnson's Cameraperson won Best Documentary against the much-praised OJ: Made in America; and Kelly Fremon Craig's delightful The Edge of Seventeen won Best First Film.

The remaining four winners were: Hell or High Water, with Jeff Bridges winning Supporting Actor; Love & Friendship for Whit Stillman's adaptation of Jane Austen's epistolary novel Lady Susan; Arrival for its Special Effects; and Kubo and the Two Strings as the Best Animated Film.

The Florida Film Critics Circle is an organization of 27 writers from Florida-based print and online publications. Founded in 1996, the FFCC strives to recognize outstanding work in film, further the cause of good movies, and maintain the highest level of professionalism among film critics in Florida. Bill Gibron of PopMatters.com and FilmRacket.com has served as chairman since March 2013.

For the complete list of winners and runner-ups, visit floridafilmcritics.com.

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