London Evening Standard British Film Awards: 90% spot on

7 Feb

The BAFTA countdown heated up last night with the 39th London Evening Standard British Film Awards, held at the London Film Museum.

An untimely fire alarm interrupted the stars  pre-awards champagne quaffing, but unperturbed by the inconvenient interruption events were soon back on track.


Despite being royally shafted by the Academy, Michael Fassbender added to his plethora of awards by scooping Best Actor for his sublime turns as sex addict Brandon in Shame and Rochester in Jane Eyre.   Fassbender was also a winner at last week’s RAFA’s (also for Shame) and last night’s  nod over Oscar nominee Gary Oldman only serves to make a mockery of  the Academy’s refusal to recognise his work.

Olivia Colman is another who might feel aggrieved for being ignored by the more prestigious awards (shame of you in particular BAFTA) but she was duly rewarded for her supreme role as Hannah in Paddy Considine’s Tyrannosaur by winning Best Actress.  Colman’s win was her third for the part, following success at the London Film Critics Circle Awards and at the British Independent Film Awards.

Jeremy and Mark just out of shot...

In a similar vein, Senna, flagrantly ignored by Oscar, triumphed in the Best Documentary category.  Asif Kapadia’s remarkably emotive love letter to Aryton Senna is a beautifully composed, poetic, masterful portrait of the glittering life and ultimately tragic career of one of sports’ greatest champions. It is raw, brutal, heart wrenching filmmaking of the very highest order and this win should ensure that it wins either Best Documentary or Outstanding British Film at this weekend’s BAFTA’s.

If it fails to win the latter, it will in all likelihood lose out to Lynee Ramsey’s We Need To Talk About Kevin, which followed up its baffling success at the BFI London Film Festival and the London Film Critics’ Circle Awards by winning Best Film last night, beating the far superior Shame and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.

Other winners on the night included The Guard which won the Peter Sellers Comedy Award, Andrew Haigh for his screenplay of Weekend and John Hurt who was rightfully awarded the Alexander Walker Special Award for Contribution to Cinema.

Hurt, who starred as Control in Tinker Tailor, was recognised for a career that has spanned over 40 years.

Arise Sir John perhaps?

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