San Diego film critics vote 'Vera Drake' as year's best

Category: Phantom of the Opera News | Posted by: admin
Article Date: December 29, 2004 | Publication: NC Times | Author: DAN BENNETT
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"Vera Drake" was voted Best Film of 2004 by the San Diego Film Critics Society.

The Mike Leigh-directed drama, concerning a British family in the depths of emotional crisis during the post-World War II years, also earned Leigh a Best Original Screenplay honor from the San Diego critics. Imelda Staunton, who played the family mother at the center of the crisis in "Vera Drake," was voted as Best Actress, while Phil Davis, who played her concerned husband, was chosen as Best Supporting Actor.

The society, comprising print, TV, radio and Internet critics working in San Diego County, including the North County Times, chose Clint Eastwood as Best Director for his character drama "Million Dollar Baby." The critics also voted the music from "Million Dollar Baby," composed by Eastwood, as Best Score.

Jim Carrey, who played the lovelorn protagonist in "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind," was chosen as Best Actor.

Winning the Best Supporting Actress honor was Natalie Portman, for her performance in the love-quartet drama "Closer."

The San Diego critics voted Spain's "The Sea Inside" as Best Foreign Language Film, and voted Jonathan Caouette's enigmatic self-portrait "Tarnation" ---- notable in part because it was produced and edited at minimal cost on a desktop computer ---- as Best Documentary.

"The Incredibles" was voted Best Animated Film.

Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor won honors for Best Adapted Screenplay for their writing of "Sideways." A tie in the Best Cinematography category resulted in the honoring of both Christopher Doyle for "Hero" and John Mathieson for "The Phantom of the Opera."

Dante Ferretti was honored for Best Production Design for his work on "The Aviator," while Valdis Oskarsdottir won the Best Editing award for his work on "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind."

The critics honored veteran character actor Don Cheadle for Best Body of Work during 2004, citing his performances in the films "Hotel Rwanda," "The United States of Leland" and "The Assassination of Richard Nixon."