The Post, starring Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep, is the first recipient of the Gary Murray award for Best Ensemble.EXPAND
The Post, starring Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep, is the first recipient of the Gary Murray award for Best Ensemble.
courtesy 20th Century Fox

North Texas Film Critics Association Gives The Post Ensemble Award Named for Gary Murray

The Oscars are in March, but if you can't wait to see which actors and filmmakers walk away with shiny gold trophies, the North Texas Film Critics Association thinks it has a good idea who will win awards — or who should.

The association comprises 17 broadcast, print and online journalists from North Texas. In addition to publishing film reviews and raising awareness of new films, its mission is to host an annual awards ceremony celebrating the year's best films.

Crime drama Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri appears many times on this year's list of winners. Frances McDormand stars as a grieving mother who is unsatisfied with the efforts of the local police to solve her daughter's murder. The NTFCA voted McDormand best actress and Sam Rockwell best supporting actor for his role as Officer Jason Dixon.

The NTFCA's picks also included some surprises. One pleasant one was the French film Raw, which won best foreign language film. The creepy movie, about a veterinary student who breaks vegetarianism during hazing at university and the consequences she and her fellow students suffer, is one of the most artful, inspired and funny horror films in recent years.

Mexican director Guillermo del Toro's The Shape of Water has been on a surprising streak this award season — it had the most Golden Globe nominations with seven — and that continues in North Texas. It's a beautiful film with a stellar cast and a thin plot that mashes up Amelie with Creature from the Black Lagoon. The NTFCA awarded del Toro best director.

But the biggest winner in the NTFCA awards is The Post, Steven Spielberg's timely film (starring Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks) about The Washington Post's battle with the government after the newspaper decided to publish the Pentagon Papers.

"As a filmmaker, Mr. Spielberg invariably comes down on the side of optimism; here, that hopefulness feels right," The New York Times review said. "It also feels like a rallying cry."

The NTFCA awarded The Post best picture, as well as its first Garry Murray Award for best ensemble. Murray was a film critic and the president of the North Texas Film Critics Association at the time of his death in 2016.

He was hit by a car while crossing Mockingbird Lane during the year's Dallas International Film Festival. A pedestrian bridge long in the works finally opened at the site of Murray's accident this fall.

"The honor will be bestowed annually to the Best Ensemble," according to the NTFCA's press release announcing the winners.

The full list of recipients:

AWARD WINNERS
2017 North Texas Film Critics Association
(Choices listed in order of votes received)

BEST PICTURE
Winner: THE POST
Runners-up: THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING, MISSOURI; GET OUT; THE SHAPE OF WATER; DUNKIRK; BABY DRIVER; LADY BIRD; THE FLORIDA PROJECT; THE BIG SICK; LOGAN.

BEST ACTOR
Winner: Gary Oldman, DARKEST HOUR
Runners-up: James Franco, THE DISASTER ARTIST; Tom Hanks, THE POST; Jake Gyllenhaal, STRONGER; James McAvoy, SPLIT

BEST ACTRESS
Winner: Frances McDormand, THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING, MISSOURI
Runners-up: Meryl Streep, THE POST; Saoirse Ronan, LADY BIRD; Margot
Robbie, I, TONYA; Jessica Chastain, MOLLY’S GAME

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Winner: Sam Rockwell, THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING, MISSOURI.
Runners-up: Willem Dafoe, THE FLORIDA PROJECT; Idris Elba, MOLLY’S GAME; Will Poulter, DETROIT; Patrick Stewart, LOGAN

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Winner: Laurie Metcalf, LADY BIRD
Runners-up:Holly Hunter, THE BIG SICK; Octavia Spencer, THE SHAPE OF WATER ; Allison Janney, I, TONYA; Tilda Swinton, OKJA

BEST DIRECTOR
Winner: Guillermo del Toro, THE SHAPE OF WATER
Runners-up: Jordan Peele, GET OUT; Christopher Nolan, DUNKIRK; Steven
Spielberg, THE POST; Greta Gerwig, LADY BIRD

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
Winner: RAW (France)
Runners-up: MENASHE (Yiddish); FIRST THEY KILLED MY FATHER (Cambodia)

BEST DOCUMENTARY
Winner: JANE
Runners-up: STEP; CITY OF GHOSTS

BEST ANIMATED FILM
Winner: COCO
Runners-up: THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE; LOVING VINCENT

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Winner: Roger Deakins, BLADE RUNNER 2049
Runner-ups: Dan Laustsen, THE SHAPE OF WATER; Hoyte Van Hoytema, DUNKIRK;
Michael Seresin, WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES tied with Janusz Kaminski, THE POST

BEST NEWCOMER
Winner: Brooklynn Prince, THE FLORIDA PROJECT

GARY MURRAY AWARD (Best Ensemble)
Winner: THE POST

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