The Toronto Film Critics Association named Laura Poitras‘ All the Beauty and the Bloodshed the best documentary of 2022. The film won the Allan King Documentary Award, named for the late Canadian filmmaker, today in the group’s live vote for the TFCA Awards. (Myself, POV editor Marc Glassman, and several contributors are TFCA members.) All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, which was picked as the best documentary of 2022 by POV, follows photographer Nan Goldin as she fights to hold the Sackler family accountable for profiting amid the opioid crisis. Poitras, working in close collaboration with Goldin, situates the Sacklers’ crimes amid Goldin’s family history and the price of silence. The film screened at the Toronto International Film Festival this fall after winning the Golden Lion at Venice–only the second documentary to do so. Poitras was previously a runner-up with the TFCA Awards for her Oscar winner Citizenfour.
The runners-up for the TFCA’s documentary prize were Fire of Love, directed by Sara Dosa, and Moonage Daydream, directed by Brett Morgen. Documentary was also represented, to an extent, in the group’s citations for the stop-motion mockumentary Marcel the Shell with Shoes on. The film about a shell who becomes a viral sensation scored runner-up placements in the races for Best Animated Feature and Best First Feature.
The prize for Best First Feature went to Charlotte Wells’ debut Aftersun. The drama about a father-daughter vacation, filtered through memories, pulled an upset sweep at the TFCA awards, winning four honours including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actor for lead Paul Mescal. Aftersun edged out local talent Sarah Polley, whose drama Women Talking inspired passionate debate among members and was a finalist in some of the group’s closest votes in recent memory.
The TFCA also unveiled the nominees for the annual Rogers Best Canadian Feature Award. The three finalists, all dramas, include Clement Virgo’s Brother, David Cronenberg’s Crimes of the Future, and Anthony Shim’s Riceboy Sleeps. The winner will receive a cash prize of $100,000 courtesy of Rogers with the runners-up receiving $5000. The TFCA will announce additional prizes leading up to the Gala at the OMNI King Edward Hotel on March 6, including the Stella Artois Jay Scott Emerging Artist Award, the Company 3 TFCA Luminary Award, and the TFCA Emerging Critic Award.
Allan King Documentary Award
All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, directed by Laura Poitras (Elevation Pictures)
Runners-up: Fire of Love (Mongrel Media); Moonage Daydream (Elevation Pictures)
Aftersun (Sphere Films)
Runners-up: Everything Everywhere All at Once (Elevation Pictures), Women Talking (Universal Picture Canada)
Charlotte Wells – Aftersun (Sphere Films)
Runners-up: Daniels, Everything Everywhere All at Once (Elevation Pictures); Sarah Polley, Women Talking (Universal Pictures Canada)
Best Screenplay, Original or Adapted
The Banshees of Inisherin – Martin McDonagh (Searchlight Pictures)
Runners-up: Todd Field, Tár (Universal Pictures Canada); Sarah Polley, Women Talking (Universal Picturs Canada)
Cate Blanchett in Tár (Universal Pictures Canada)
Runners-up: Danielle Deadwyler in Till (Universal Pictures Canada); Michelle Yeoh in Everything Everywhere All at Once (Elevation Pictures)
Paul Mescal in Aftersun (Sphere Films)
Runners-up: Colin Farrell in The Banshees of Inisherin (Searchlight Pictures); Brendan Fraser in The Whale (Elevation Pictures)
Best Supporting Actress
Keke Palmer in Nope (Universal Pictures Canada)
Runners-up: Jessie Buckley in Women Talking (Universal Pictures Canada); Stephanie Hsu in Everything Everywhere All at Once (Elevation Pictures)
Best Supporting Actor
Ke Huy Quan in Everything Everywhere All at Once (Elevation Pictures)
Runners-up: Brendan Gleeson in The Banshees of Inisherin (Searchlight Pictures); Barry Keoghan in The Banshees of Inisherin (Searchlight Pictures)
Best Animated Feature
Turning Red, directed by Domee Shi (Walt Disney Pictures Canada)
Runners-up: Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio (Netflix); Marcel the Shell with Shoes on (Elevation Pictures)
Best International Feature
Saint Omer, directed by Alice Diop (Films We Like)
Runners-up: Decision to Leave (Mongrel Media); EO (Films We Like)+
Best First Feature
Aftersun, directed by Charlotte Wells (Sphere Films)
Runners-up: Marcel the Shell with Shoes on (Elevation Pictures); Turning Red (Walt Disney Pictures Canada)
Rogers Best Canadian Feature Award Nominees
Crimes of the Future
To Iranian filmmakers Jafar Panahi, Mohammad Rasoulof and Mostafa Al-Ahmad, who are currently in jail in Ira yet continue to make subtle movies that talk about life in their country, in spite of threats and restrictions from the regime. We stand in solidarity with them and add our voices to the international arts community calling for their release.