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National Society of Film Critics Names ‘Amour’ Best Film of 2012

Susan King
Los Angeles Times (MCT)

LOS ANGELES — Another critics’ group has shown love for the film “Amour.”

The National Society of Film Critics named “Amour,” Michael Haneke’s heartbreaking drama about an elderly couple facing a catastrophic illness, the best film of 2012. Haneke was named best director and star Emmanuelle Riva was named best actress by the group, which gave out its awards on Saturday.

“The Master” came in second for best picture, with “Zero Dark Thirty” third. Kathryn Bigelow (“Zero Dark Thirty”) tied with Paul Thomas Anderson (“The Master”) for runner-up in the director category.

It’s the latest critical acclaim for “Amour” which was named best picture by the Los Angeles Film Critics Assn. in December. The film also won the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival in May.

Jennifer Lawrence placed second in the best actress category for “Silver Linings Playbook,” with Jessica Chastain placing third for “Zero Dark Thirty.”

Best actor honors went to Daniel Day-Lewis for his performance as Abraham Lincoln in “Lincoln,” with Denis Levant of “Holy Motors” placing second. Joaquin Phoenix was third for “The Master.”

Day-Lewis previously won best actor from the critics’ group for 1989’s “My Left Foot” and 2007’s “There Will Be Blood.”

The National Society of Film Critics is made up of 60 of the country’s major critics. Forty-three members gathered Saturday in New York for the 47th annual awards meeting, at the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, as guests of the Film Society of Lincoln Center.

The society and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences often disagree over their top choices. Last year, the critics chose Lars Von Trier’s end-of-the-world drama “Melancholia” as the best film, but the best picture Oscar went to “The Artist.”

Matthew McConaughey received supporting actor honors for “Magic Mike” and “Bernie.”

Amy Adams was named best supporting actress for “The Master.”

Tony Kushner won screenplay honors for “Lincoln.”

“The Gatekeepers” received the best nonfiction award.

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The Best Indie Rock of 2017

Photo courtesy of Matador Records

The indie rock genre is wide and unwieldy, but the musicians selected here share an awareness of one's place on the cultural-historical timeline.

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With that in mind, our list of 2017's best indie rock albums ranges from melancholy to upbeat, defiant to uplifting, serious to seriously goofy. As always, it's hard to pick the best ten albums that represent the year, especially in such a broad category. Artists like King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard had a heck of a year, putting out four albums. Although they might fit nicer in progressive rock than here. Artists like Father John Misty don't quite fit the indie rock mold in our estimation. Foxygen, Mackenzie Keefe, Broken Social Scene, Sorority Noise, Sheer Mag... this list of excellent bands that had worthy cuts this year goes on. But ultimately, here are the ten we deemed most worthy of recognition in 2017.

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White Hills epic '80s callback Stop Mute Defeat is a determined march against encroaching imperial darkness; their eyes boring into the shadows for danger but they're aware that blinding lights can kill and distort truth. From "Overlord's" dark stomp casting nets for totalitarian warnings to "Attack Mode", which roars in with the tribal certainty that we can survive the madness if we keep our wits, the record is a true and timely win for Dave W. and Ego Sensation. Martin Bisi and the poster band's mysterious but relevant cool make a great team and deliver one of their least psych yet most mind destroying records to date. Much like the first time you heard Joy Division or early Pigface, for example, you'll experience being startled at first before becoming addicted to the band's unique microcosm of dystopia that is simultaneously corrupting and seducing your ears. - Morgan Y. Evans

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The Best Country Music of 2017

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