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Southeastern critics name 'Spotlight' 2015's best movie

The journalism procedural Spotlight was named 2015's best film by the Southeastern Film Critics Association

Open Road Films

The journalism procedural Spotlight was named 2015's best film by the Southeastern Film Critics Association



Tom McCarthy's true-life journalism drama Spotlight was named 2015's best film by the Southeastern Film Critics Association (SEFCA), when voting results were announced Monday.

Spotlight examines the Boston Globe’s 2002 Pulitzer Prize-winning investigation of child molestation by Catholic priests and a systematic cover-up within the Catholic Church. Spotlight was also voted the group's ensemble acting prize, and was honored in the original screenplay category.

Spotlight was a clear favorite with our members,” SEFCA President Philip Martin of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette said in a media release.  “Spotlight appeared on 80 percent of the ballots and received 19 No. 1 votes, by far the most of any film. Rarely have we had that sort of consensus about the top film.”

Full disclosure: Times movie critic Steve Persall is a voting SEFCA member. Further disclosure: Persall assures us that other SEFCA members couldn't have seen The Reverant, and certainly hadn't seen Star Wars: The Force Awakens by balloting deadline. Neither film appeared anywhere in the results.

Bryan Cranston won named best actor Trumbo, and Brie Larson was named best actress for Room.Supporting performances awards were voted to Sylvester Stallone (Creed) and Alicia Vikander (Ex Machina).

The group’s Wyatt Award, named in memory of SEFCA charter member Gene Wyatt and awarded annually to the film that best captures the spirit of the South, went to the documentary Finders Keepers, Bryan Carberry and Clay Tweel’s bizarre story about a dispute over a North Carolina man’s amputated foot.

The Southeastern Film Critics Association is comprised of 55 professional film critics in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.

Here are this year's results, runners-up and the group's top-10 movies of 2015:

Top 10

1. Spotlight

2. Mad Max: Fury Road

3. Room

4. Brooklyn

5. Carol

6. The Big Short

7. The Martian

8. Inside Out

9. Bridge of Spies

10. Trumbo

Best Actor

Winner: Bryan Cranston, Trumbo

Runner-up: Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs

Best Actress

Winner: Brie Larson, Room

Runner-up: Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

Best Supporting Actor

Winner: Sylvester Stallone, Creed

Runner-up: Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies

Best Supporting Actress

Winner: Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina

Runner-up: Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Best Ensemble

Winner: Spotlight

Runner-up: The Big Short

Best Director

George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road

Runner-up: Tom McCarthy, Spotlight

Best Original Screenplay

Winner: Tom McCarthy, Josh Singer for Spotlight

Runner-up: Bob Petersen, Pete Docter for Inside Out

Best Adapted Screenplay

Winner: Emma Donoghue for Room

Runner-up: Charles Randolph and Adam McKay for The Big Short

Best Documentary

Winner: Amy

Runner-up: Best of Enemies

Foreign Language

Winner: Son of Saul

Runner-up: The Assassin

Best Animated Film 

Winner: Inside Out

Runner-up: Anomalisa

Best Cinematography

Winner: John Seale for Mad Max: Fury Road

Runner-up: Luca Bigazzi for Youth

The Gene Wyatt Award for the Film that Best Evokes the Spirit of the South 

Finders Keepers

[Last modified: Monday, December 14, 2015 5:39pm]


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