And the Winners Are….Washington Area Film Critics Awards 2021

Posted on December 6, 2021 at 4:31 pm

“Belfast” headlined a diverse roster of winners when The Washington, D.C. Area Film Critics Association (WAFCA) announced their top honorees for 2021 this morning. A semi-autobiographical coming-of-age drama from filmmaker Kenneth Branagh centering on a nine-year-old boy and his family during the Troubles in 1969 Northern Ireland, “Belfast” won Best Film and Branagh took home Best Original Screenplay.

Jane Campion won Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay for “The Power of the Dog,” based on Thomas Savage’s 1967 novel, a provocative western of toxic masculinity and repressed longing set in the big sky country of 1925 Montana. As a college-aged young man with an increasing enigmatic connection to his petulant rancher uncle, Kodi Smit-McPhee was also awarded Best Supporting Actor for the film.

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WAFCA awarded Best Actress to Kristen Stewart for her stirring portrayal of Diana, Princess of Wales, reaching the life-altering decision to leave her marriage to Prince Charles and the royal family over the 1991 Christmas holiday, in Pablo Larraín’s “Spencer.” Also superbly playing a late real-life figure, talented composer, lyricist and playwright Jonathan Larson, Andrew Garfield won Best Actor for Lin Manuel-Miranda’s musical-drama “tick, tick…BOOM!” Best Supporting Actress went to Aunjanue Ellis, wonderful as Oracene “Brandy” Price, mother of future tennis greats Venus and Serena Williams, in Reinaldo Marcus Green’s “King Richard.”

Best Acting Ensemble accolades were awarded to Fran Kranz’s “Mass,” an emotionally shattering drama starring Ann Dowd, Reed Birney, Martha Plimpton and Jason Isaacs, as grieving parents who meet in the wake of a tragic school shooting. For Best Youth Performance, Woody Norman won for Mike Mills’ “C’mon C’mon,” as a nine-year-old boy who forms a bond with his uncle while his mother is out of town.

Copyright Bleekeer Stelt 2021

Mike Rianda’s vibrant sci-fi comedy “The Mitchells vs. the Machines,” about a family road trip that turns into a fight to save the world from a robot uprising, took Best Animated Feature honors, while Best Voice Performance went to Awkwafina for her standout work as excitable dragon Sisu in “Raya and the Last Dragon.” Best Documentary kudos went to “Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised),” Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson’s film about the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival. Best International/Foreign Language Film was awarded to Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s Japanese drama “Drive My Car.”

In technical categories, Denis Villeneuve’s sweeping fantasy epic “Dune” was the major victor, winning Best Production Design, Best Cinematography, and Best Original Score, while Best Editing went to “tick, tick…BOOM!”

The Washington, D.C. Area Film Critics Association comprises over 65 DC-VA-MD-based film critics from television, radio, print and the Internet. Voting was conducted from December 3-5, 2021.


Best Film:

Best Director:
Jane Campion (The Power of the Dog)

Best Actor:
Andrew Garfield (tick, tick…BOOM!)

Best Actress:
Kristen Stewart (Spencer)

Best Supporting Actor:
Kodi Smit-McPhee (The Power of the Dog)

Best Supporting Actress:
Aunjanue Ellis (King Richard)

Best Acting Ensemble:

Copyright A24 2021
Best Youth Performance:
Woody Norman (C’mon C’mon)

Best Voice Performance:
Awkwafina (Raya and the Last Dragon)

Best Original Screenplay:
Kenneth Branagh (Belfast)

Best Adapted Screenplay:
Jane Campion (The Power of the Dog)

Best Animated Feature:
The Mitchells vs. the Machines

Copyright 2021 Hulu
Best Documentary:
Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)

Best International/Foreign Language Film:
Drive My Car

Best Production Design:
Patrice Vermette, Production Designer; Richard Roberts and Zsuzsanna Sipos, Set Decorators (Dune)

Best Cinematography:
Greig Fraser, ASC, ACS (Dune)

Best Editing:
Myron Kerstein, ACE; Andrew Weisblum, ACE (tick, tick…BOOM!)

Best Original Score:
Hans Zimmer (Dune)

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