Thursday, February 21, 2013


The 2012 Muriel Awards are building quite a head of steam going into the weekend, when the picks for Best Picture of the Year will be trickled out in the hours leading up to that other movie-oriented awards event happening this weekend. Whatever. These awards are far more fun and a whole lot more eclectic, (and sometimes downright odd), even if some of the winners and others that float to the top of each category resemble some of the more favored AMPAS candidates.

But that’s the weekend. Let’s catch up on what we’ve done so far this week.

A favorite category of Muriels master Steve Carlson is Best Cinematic Moment of 2012, and it’s not hard to see why. Voters came up with a wide ranging list of isolated moments that ranked as among the year’s most indelible. Muriels voters don’t end up with the chance to make poetry out of the moments in the tradition of Richard T. Jameson and Kathleen Murphy’s much beloved "Moments Out of Time" series, but we do have clips! Click here to see what emerged as the most chosen moments out of a year that had plenty of them, and then click here to see everything that got a vote. If this doesn’t jog your desire to see some of these that you may have forgotten about, well, surely there’s a cooking reality show on the tube somewhere. Have at it!

My own list did not include the eventual winner, but it certainly could have. Here’s what I chose (#1-10):

Under the tree:  Is he or isn’t he…? The Kid with a Bike

Motion capture Holy Motors

The ship sinks Life of Pi

The Tale of the Quaker, or What’s Under the Cravat?  Seven Psychopaths

“I guess I didn’t have to worry about Nicholas Barclay walking in the door anymore…” The Imposter

Two possible endings Savages

Just havin’ some K-Fried-C with the family Killer Joe

Three possible paths—Which way should I go? Premium Rush

“The Ballad of Dwight Frye” (“Go… watch… the Cooper woman.” Dark Shadows

Mongo fantasy and the Flash freeze frame Ted

And just because it’s so damn good and because I wish now that I’d picked it myself, here’s the Muriels winner:  Entr’acte (“Let My Baby Ride”) from Holy Motors.

When will this wonderful movie be released on Blu-ray? Not soon enough...

The race for Best Lead Performance (Male) provided a welcome bit of surprise in that the presumed favorite(s) for the Academy Award, and the performance perched at or near the top of just about every list circulating out there this year, were the second and third-place finishers in the Muriels universe. In what is surely the only instance this year in which this guy takes anything but the whole nine yards, here’s your third-place finisher…

…and the fella who could only say he came with a hair’s breadth of glory in second place…

You wanna know who won? Holy moley! Click here! (He placed third on my ballot.)

And get the full voting results here.

Likewise, the two females left out in the cold by the Muriels for Best Lead Performance (Female) have already have their fair share of honors and will probably by fighting it out on Oscar night. They are, in third place…

…and second place…

That leaves the following smokin’ hot contender to take the prize, which by all rights she should at least be up for the Academy Award as well. But the nomination process left her sunk all the way to the bottom of…  Well, click here to see who won, and then click here to see who else Muriels voters cast their ballots for.

Finally, since the acting categories inspire so much love from some many different places and angles, the Muriels always reserve some space to highlight some of the more interesting choices that could never have garnered enough of the vote to appear as real contenders. Along with the Best Cinematic Moment category, these are my favorite lists, not only because we get to see the breadth of appreciation of those who are voting but also read some spirited defenses for actors who might not be given much space and attention otherwise. So now turn the spotlight on the Muriels long and loving list of Other Stuff We Loved Pt. 1 (Actors).

Sometime tomorrow the Muriels unleash part 2 of this category, devoted to the females, and I get to shower some candy-colored love upon one of the more idiosyncratic, but no less than utterly sincere picks I’ve ever offered to the Muriel Awards. Stay tuned!


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