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The Kermodes: Make Your Case

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Mark Kermode | 13:00 UK time, Tuesday, 6 January 2009

The Kermodes: the most coveted awards in cinema are upon us once more. You know my views - but what is your opinion?

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  • Comment number 1.

    Dr Kermode,

    How dare you besmirch the good name of the Academy Awards.

    They have a long and glorious history of recognising those films that are TRULY great going right the way back to 1941 when the unforgettable How Green Was My Valley triumphed over that confusing, flashy vanity project Citizen Kane.

    Keeping that in mind . . .

    Kermode for Best Film: Son of Rambow

    It's too small for the Oscars but too great to be ignored.

  • Comment number 2.

    Dear Mark,

    It may still have an outside chance of a 'Best Picture' nomination at the Oscars, but if it misses out it'd be great if could at least condiser WALL-E for a Kermode.

    Keep up the good work Dr!

  • Comment number 3.

    So far, 'Che' and Steven Soderbergh and Benicio del Toro, and the rest of the crew, completely neglected at the Golden Globe.

  • Comment number 4.

    Best Film - Hunger

    Best Actor - Michael Fassbender (Hunger) or Richard Jenkins (The Visitor)

    Best Actress - Julie Walters (Mamma Mia!)

    Best Screenplay - Martin McDonagh (In Bruges)

    Best Music - Max Richter (Waltz With Bashir)

  • Comment number 5.

    Best Film - [rec]

    Best Actor - Bill Milner (Son of Rambow)

    Best Actress - Belén Rueda (El Orfanato)

    Best Screenplay - I'd happily second (In Bruges)

    Best Music - I've drawn a blank!

  • Comment number 6.

    Best Film :- El Orfanato

    Best Actor : - Ron Perlman (Hellboy 2)

    Best Director :- Terence Davies ( Of Time and the City)

  • Comment number 7.

    I think you'd better initiate a best documentary category (after all they really need advertising)

    Best documentary - Tyson.

    Unsavoury subject but an excellent film, saw it at the London Film Festival but have heard nothing about it since?

    Best Actress - Michelle Williams (Incendiary)

    The rest of the film is so dreadful she deserves a nomination for struggling through.

  • Comment number 8.

    Best Film: Times and Winds [yet another great film from Turkey]
    Best Director: Terence Davies [masterful, as always]
    Best Actor: Michael Fassbender (Hunger) [hypnotic]
    Best Actress: Belen Rueda (The Orphanage) [please no US remake!]
    Best Screenplay: Martin McDonagh (In Bruges) [as sharp as Billy Wilder]
    Best Music: Man on Wire [keeps the pacing, adds to the drama]

  • Comment number 9.

    Dear Dr K

    Hello there, I must say it's spiffing of you to give us this chance to contribute. I've been coming up with shortlists inside my head anyway, so I may as well put them down here.

    Best Actress: Belen Rueda for 'The Orphanage'

    Best soundtrack: 'The Orphanage' again (it scared the bejayziz out of me, thereby doing its job)

    Best screenplay: In Bruge. Yes, I know the film had a lot of problems, but I've just got a lot of admiration for the way it managed to wrangle such potentially irritating dialogue.

    Best actor: I can't decide; either Peter Dinklage for Prince Caspian (he was the ONLY saving grace in that film)or Thomas Turgoose for Somerstown.

    Best Director: HAS to be Del Toro, for making a subversive, interesting and occasionally frightening Hollywood film in the shape of Hellboy II

  • Comment number 10.

    Best Film - Gomorra

    Best Director - Frank Darabont for The Mist

    Best Actor - Casey Affleck for Gone Baby Gone

    Best Actress - Belen Rueda for The Orphanage

    Best Screenplay - Martin McDonagh for In Bruges

    Best Music - Hans Zimmer and James Newton Howard for The Dark Knight

  • Comment number 11.

    Best Film - Waltz With Bashir. Probably be nominated for best documentary but not best film. My two favourites of 2008 are There Will Be Blood and The Diving Bell and the Butterfly but they were included at the last Oscars.

    Best Director - Juan Antonio Bayona (The Orphanage). Came out too early in the year to be remembered by the Academy.

    Best Actor - Michael Fassbender. The film is too controversial to be nominated but Fassbender's performance is extraordinary.

    Best Actress - Belen Rueda (The Orphanage). Again, came out too long ago for the academy to remember. Shame because this is such a strong and natural performance. Can't see anyone being better than this in the more Academy friendly films.

    Best Screenplay - Hunger. The film stops halfway through for a half hour decussion on the subject and not only does it not destroy the pace of the film is only hightens the drama and tension. Brilliant.

    Best Score - Fernando Velázquez (The Orphanage) Very subtle and very creepy.

    Honourable mentions to Aaron Eckhart for The Dark Knight. Far more layed and complex than Heath Ledger's enjoyable but one-note performance. Visual effects for Hellboy II; this is the kind of stuff we want to see for Middle Earth. Josh Brolin in W. Underated actor gives a very compelling performance in an underated film.

  • Comment number 12.

    Best Film - Changeling: despite recognition for Angelina Jolie, Clint Eastwood's masterpiece has not recieved any nominations for best film or director

    Best Director - Andrew Stanton for WALL-E: seriously when has a director's job ever been noted for directing an animated feature, they put in a lot of effort and time. And Wall-E was one of the best films of this year.

    Best Actor - Ron Perlman for Hellboy 2: a great comedic performance he delivers a terrific emotional performance despite being underneath all that make up

    Best Actress - Marcia Gay Harden for The Mist. Arguably being a supporting performance, her chilling Mrs. Carmody delivers one of the more memorable performances of the year.

    Best Screenplay - Frank Darabont for The Mist. An intelligent script with some very clever religious and political overtones + a great ending.

    Best Music Score - John Williams for Indiana Jones 4. The best part of the new Indiana Jones film, a terrific score blending thumping action beats with some dark and mysterious sounds.

  • Comment number 13.

    Best Film-Somers Town

    Best Actor-Thomas Turgoose (Somers Town)

    Best Director-Terence Davies (Of Time and the City)

    Best Music-Gavin Clark (Somers Town)

  • Comment number 14.

    Best Film: Doomsday
    Its about time the best action film for probably a generation was acknowledged. Doomsday does not falter like so many other action films which have no memorable sequences and are just people hitting each other endlessly- this is crammed with memorable events and is a wonderful ride to experience. It is also wonderful for it's beautiful decaying settings and depth of detail in a post apocalyptic Scotland brimming with phycopaths. It also has the one of the happiest endings of any film I have seen, and if thats not enough, it even has a gimp.

    Best Actor: Doug Jones
    The star of Hellboy 2 is the mand behind the mask of some of the best creatures, namley Abraham, the chamberlain and the incredible Angel of Death. He makes up for not having a 'human' face by his wonderful body actions which are as expressive as any facial movement. He deserves an award for 'acting' better than any other actor I have seen and making the unbelievabe very real.

    Best Actress: Belen Rueda
    In The Orfanage her gradual physical and mental disintergration at the loss of her son is brillantly performed, and adds even more depth to an already wonderful story as her detierioration becomes just as scary as any possible ghosts.

    Best Director: Jaume Balagureo + Paco Plaza
    The directors of REC, not mearly made a great horror movie, but the greatest yet 'handy cam' film. This has been achieved through numerous efforts, notably keeping actors in the dark and using believable characters. As a result REC stands up with The Orphanage in terms of edge of the seat scares, but unlike The Orphanage the fear stays with you well into the night...

    Best Screenplay: The Mist
    The Mist is a top notch monster film, and despite the fact that they changed the ending from that of the short story on which it is based, it has been made even more grim and hopeless than you could ever believe you would see in any film, and for bringing such pessimism back into the world the writers deserve everything they get.

  • Comment number 15.

    I'm not going to cover all the awards as I'm not sure I can think of a forerunner in all of them. But here are those where I think there is a clear deserving winner.

    Best Actor: Can you really make a case for Efron over Michael Fassbender in Hunger? Nuanced, able to display gradual decline towards starvation without words as well as wonderful intricate dialogue acting in the 17 minute unflincing camera shot.

    Best Actress: Let's best honest, Jolie is nailed on for this at the Oscars and she was no where near Kristin Scott Thomas in I've Loved You So Long who managed to create a tense, realistic emotive atmosphere without ever overdoing it.

    Best Music: Of Time and the City. Marvellous evocation of nostalgia, pining and brought the images to the forefront of the audience's imagination.

  • Comment number 16.

    I'd just like to suggest Ricky Gervais as best actor for Ghost Town, a great performance in a touching film. I'd say also that The Dark Knight's score is impressively powerful.

  • Comment number 17.

    BEST DIRECTOR - Alexandre Bustillo & Julien Maury for À l'intérieur*

    A masterpiece of modern horror. Brutal and claustrophobic that was almost too tense

    * Although it premièred in 2007 it wasn't widely released till 2008

    BEST SCREENPLAY - Steven C. Stewart For "It Is Fine. Everything Is Fine!"

    One of the most Beautiful and disturbing films i have ever seen.

    Reminded me of an ultra dark The Diving Bell and the Butterfly.

    Almost impossible film to see in the U.K though.

    BEST ACTOR - Josh Brolin for Milk

    His portrayal of Assassin Dan White was brilliantly both menacing and pathetic.

    BEST FILM - Gomorrah

    A gloriously disjointed and downbeat film that gives a lingering bad taste in your mouth.

    Frighteningly realistic it shows just how deeply ingrained the Camorra is in the day to day lives of people who live both in the slums and suburbs of Naples

  • Comment number 18.

    Lifetime achievement award-Bob Hoskins

    Best actress-Ellen Page

    Best Actor-Micheal Sheen

    Best cinematography-The Dark Knight

    Best cartoon-Wall-e

    Best documentatry- Waltz with bashir

    Best film-Of time in the city

  • Comment number 19.

    * Best Film - Man On Wire

    * Best Director- Ari Folman (Waltz With Bashir)

    * Best Actor - Dev Patel (Slumdog Millionaire)

    * Best Actress - Cate Blanchett (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button)

    * Best Screenplay - Jenny Lumet (Rachel Getting Married)

    * Best Music - Max Richter (Waltz With Bashir)

    With an honorable mention to Ben Burtt (the voice of Wall-e)who defies all categorization.

  • Comment number 20.

    Seen far too few films this year, but of those I've seen, Hunger was a real stand-out, and must be in with a chance for best film, director and actor.

    Son of Rambow was great too - best screenplay.

    And Of Time and the City certainly shouldn't go unrewarded - best music.

    I can't call to mind anyone who I'd award best actress to - just that it certainly *wouldn't* be Thandie Newton for Dubya!

  • Comment number 21.

    Best FIlm: In Bruges I think, there were a couple better but they will be highly unlikely to qualify for the Kermodes.

    Best Director: I think it has to Steve McQueen. I am sure Danny Boyle will get an Oscar nomination to go along with Slumdog winning the best film oscar.

    Best Actor: Michael Sheen, the big boys will be well looked after at the Oscars and he was pretty good as Frost.

    Best Actress: Belen Rueda - I won't take credit for this, j-avery above planted the seed. But he is so right, she was brilliant in this and unfortunately has not got a shot at the Oscars.

    Best Screenplay: In Bruges was easily the best screenplay of the year and think it will get totally overlooked in the Oscars. (that's what you get for releasing a movie in April)

    Best Music:

    Again, Slumdog will get Oscar nominated so this probably should go to Mama Mia.

  • Comment number 22.

    Best Film & Best Screenplay

    The Mist.
    Frank Darabont wrote the script, thus its the best (note to Lucas and Spielberg in regards to Indie 4). Best response to 9/11 in cinema yet. Best horror film of the year. Best ending of the decade.

    Best Director

    Steve McQueen, Hunger
    A visual and stylistic tour-de-force. Hope this is the start of a great film career.

    Best Actor

    Ron Perlman, Hellboy 2

    The big red tandoori chicken himself

    Best Actress

    Belén Rueda, The Orphanage.
    A terrific performance, and this film deserves recognition somewhere.

    Best Music

    Of Time and the City

    No marks for originality, but perfection in terms of use.

  • Comment number 23.

    Probably fair t'say Of Time And The City won't be nominated in a single Oscar category.

    How come There Will Be Blood took part in last year's Kermodes if it came out in the UK too late for the last awards season...

    Perhaps I'm being too serious about this.

    I can't even decide on nominations. There was a lot of good. Well, memorable at least.

    - The Savages - For Laura Linney/Philip Seymour Hoffman/Philip Bosco.
    - No Country For Old Men - For pretty much everything.
    - Sweeney Todd - Not perfect, but enjoyed it a lot.
    - Juno - For Ellen Page.
    - The Diving Bell and the Butterfly - For the dinner dream and "Merci".
    - Rambo - As a lesson in where a lack of morality leads.
    - The Orphanage - The seance and Belen Rueda.
    - In Bruges - The chocolate/child abuse joke.
    - Speed Racer - Far too long but quite something t'look at.
    - Gone Baby Gone - For utilising Casey Affleck and Ed Harris.
    - The Happening - Only for making me re-watch Unbreakable.
    - Wall-E - For EVE giggling. And Burn-E.
    - The Mist - For the obvious.
    - The Dark Knight - For the Nolans' consistency.
    - Hellboy 2: The Golden Army - Barry Manilow and the Death Angel.
    - Somers Town - Perry Benson's underwear.
    - Man On Wire - The French know life-affirmation in film (See Diving Bell).
    - The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas - For the rock in my stomach come the end.
    - Righteous Kill - For making me play "Heat" in my head.
    - Gomorra - The closing scene.
    - Igor - A reminder that only Tim Burton does Tim Burton.
    - Ghost Town - For surprising me.
    - Hunger - Because Tyres was in a painful drama.
    - Waltz With Bashir - For the grip of the start and the debate over the end.
    - Of Time And The City - Though I wish I'd connected with it a bit more.
    - The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button - For several tears and making me forget about the CGI work.

    And why this splitting of Best Film, best ANIMATED film, best DOCUMENTARY etc etc. Another irritation; Animation isn't a genre, it's a canvas; look at Waltz With Bashir. One of the best 2008 films, and it's animated with Flash. I understand, is a free computer programme. And WALL-E's animated, and is most certainly aimed at a different demographic to Bashir. Why lump them together? I'm also slightly agnostic on the splitting of Best Film and Best Foreign Film.

    But were There Will Be Blood to take part, I'd probably give it all but Best Actress.

    I've just hijacked this and rambled, my apologies.

    And in the end, they're just awards.

    I'm clearly just bitter I'm not getting any.

  • Comment number 24.

    All that length and I didn't add Che (the complete package).

    Which had flaws, but was very impressive. Great direction, really feels one man with a camera's following real people.


  • Comment number 25.

    Best foreign film: Let the right one in (just about the best vampire movie in years). I really, really hope that the good doctor caught this gem.

  • Comment number 26.

    HI, DR. MARK,








  • Comment number 27.

    Film: Let The Right One In (Dir. Tomas Alfredson)
    Director: Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire)
    Actor: WALL-E
    Actress: Lina Leandersson (Let The Right One In)
    Screenplay: John Ajvide Lindqvist (Let The Right One In)
    Music: A.R. Rahman (Slumdog Millionaire)

    I think they should release 'Let The Right One In' as part of a double feature with 'Twilight' - I'm not sure how the audiences would react, but I feel certain it would be interesting.

  • Comment number 28.

    Hi Dr Mark,
    My nominations for the Kermode Awards are -

    Best film - Before The Devil Knows Your Dead.

    Best Actor - Philip Seymour Hoffman (Before The Devil Knows Your Dead)

    Best Actress - Belen Rueda (The Orphanage)

    Best Director - Steve McQueen (Hunger)

    Best Screenplay - Kelly Masterson (Before The Devil Knows Your Dead)

    Let the fun begin.

  • Comment number 29.

    No Kermode category for best doc? I agree that you should start one, since it seems like year after year the Academy overlooks artistically interesting examples of documentary storytelling and nominates only "serious" (read: political) documentaries. I was SO disappointed that "King of Kong" didn't get the nod last year. But I got to interview Alex Gibney (who won for "Taxi to the Dark Side") so I guess it wasn't all bad.

    If you WERE to initiate a best doc category, I'd offer up "Man on Wire" and "Young @ Heart" for your consideration, since both were great movies and I'm afraid both will get the snub come awards time.

    My noms:
    Screenplay: In Bruges (Martin McDonagh...Wow.)

    Best film: Either "The Fall" (if it counts...I think the official release date may have been in 07) or "Ghost Town" (sure, not artistically ambitious, but easily the most satisfying experience I had at the cinema this year). Of course, I'm sure neither of these matches your adoration for "Of Time and the City," but a girl can try, right?

  • Comment number 30.

    Best Film - Of Time and the City (I totally agree with you - what a satisfying cinematic experience. I came out with the sound of Terence Davis' amazing voice ringing in my ears - in a way not dissimilar to Daniel Plainview in There Will Be Blood.)

  • Comment number 31.


    Love the idea of you answering our comments.

    I think that you should add a lifetime achievement award.

    My vote goes to Terence Davies

    Distant Voices remains one of my favorite films of all time. I cannot see it without breaking down. Long Day Closes is almost as good.

    I just cannot wait to see Of Time. However, I'm stuck in California and fear that it may be a long time in the distant future.


  • Comment number 32.

    Best Film-The Fall

    Best Director-Shane Meadows (Somers Town)

    Best Screenplay-Frank Darabont (The Mist)

  • Comment number 33.

    Best Screenplay - In Bruges - Martin Mcdonough

    Best Music - The Orphanage or The Dark Knight

    Best Actor - Colin Farrell (comic acting is underrated) or Heath Ledger (but he'll prob get an oscar nom at least)

    Best Actress - Michelle Monaghan

    Best Director - Ben Affleck - Gone Baby Gone

    Best Film - In Bruges or The Orphanage or Gone Baby Gone

  • Comment number 34.

    hi dr kermode,

    best music-the orphanage

    Best Film - mamma mia

    best screenplay - in bruges

    best actress - Belen Rueda (The Orphanage)

    the best documentary i saw this year although made previously was the dr's salo documentary thanks mark for an insight into one of the more interesting and sickening films ever made

    also i would like to add if any one hasnt seen it the trailer for crank 2 is on the internet and i think it could be this years mammia mia cos is looks so bad it has to be good i mean jason strathom shockin his heart with a car battery and sticking a shotgun up a mans rear orraphiss what more do we need in 2009

    Nathan bsc

  • Comment number 35.

    Right Mark here's my list of mostly predictable choices
    Best Film: Hunger

    Best Actor: Anyone in Dark knight except Chrisitian Bale (I Think people forget that despite the plot dragging there were some really good perfomances particularly Gary Oldman)

    Best Actress: (Struggled a lot with this one clearly Anglina Jolie will be ineligible so) Belen Rueda (but she might be nominated as well in which case i think you will find it very difficult to find someone deserving of the Kermode)

    Best Screenplay: In Bruges

    Best Director: Steve McQueen

    Best Music: Mamma Mia (How could it not be?)

  • Comment number 36.

    Best Film - 'Hunger' (All my first choices were technically last year's winners, or potential Oscar nominations, so I'm going for the fim with the most hype that's unlikely to get an Oscar. I shall watch this this weekend, so I'll confirm as to whether I agree with my flippant wagon jumping decision)

    Best Director - Terrence Davis (Of Time And The City)

    Best Actor - Malcolm McDowell (Never Apologize) Not technically acting, but the most captivating performance I've witnessed this year.

    Best Actress - Belen Rueda (The Orphanage)

    Best Music - Max Richter (Waltz With Bashir)

  • Comment number 37.

    Mark, can I just ask you? When you compile your Kermode Award Show and Best Picture of the Year-lists do you go by the UK-premiere date (which means for instance Benjamin Button or The Wrestler isn't eligible this year) or do you go by the year that's registered on The Internet Movie Database i.e. premiere in it's production country?

  • Comment number 38.

    Best Film - Hunger

    Best Dirctor - Guy Maddin (My Winnipeg)

    Best Actor - Michael Fassbender (Hunger)

    Best Actress - Marcia Gay Harden (The Mist)

    Best Music - The Orphanage

  • Comment number 39.

    Best Film - Hunger

    Best Actor - Michael Fassbender (Hunger)

    Best Actress - Julianne Moore (Savage Grace)or Belén Rueda (The Orphanage)

    Best Director - Matteo Garrone (Gomorrah)

    Best screenplay - In search of a midnight kiss

    Best Music - In Bruges

  • Comment number 40.

    Best Film - Hunger

    Best Actor - Michael Fassbender (Hunger)

    Best Actress - Julianne Moore (Savage Grace)or Belen Rueda (The Orphanage)

    Best Director - Matteo Garrone (Gomorrah)

    Best screenplay - In search of a midnight kiss

    Best Music - In Bruges

  • Comment number 41.

    I don't think it's out here for a while, but I saw Doubt when I was abroad over christmas. It should, but won't, win Best Picture at the Oscars. I'm not sure if it will even get nominated for the category. And it's arguably Meryl Streep's finest performance (bar Mamma Mia of course!)

  • Comment number 42.

    Best Film – Rachel Getting Married

    Best Director – Andrew Stanton (WALL*E)

    Best Actor – Bill Irwin (Rachel Getting Married)

    Best Actress – Greta Gerwig (Hannah Takes The Stairs)

    Best Screenplay – Garth Jennings (Son Of Rambow)

    Best Music – Henry Kaiser (Encounters At The End Of The World)

  • Comment number 43.

    Like so many others I would like In Bruges to win some Kermode awards. Best screenplay definitely, but I also thought Brendan Gleeson and Colin Farrell were both excellent in it. That film convinced me that Colin Farrell can actually act!

    I notice that quite a lot of the comments on here have mentioned Michael Fassbender in Hunger. He is one of this year's nominees for the Rising Star award at the Baftas. This award is voted for by the public so I am including in this post the web address to vote. (Not sure I can attach it as a link though!)

    I myself would love to see either Michael Fassbender or Toby Kebbell win this award as I think they have both given some wonderful performances.

  • Comment number 44.

    I have not seen many of the movies from this year for many reasons but from what I did see I would like to cast Robert Downey Jr in 'Ironman' for best actor, I really enjoyed his performance and Jr can really do magnificent things on screen when he is on form. I also liked Colin Farrell in 'In Bruges'

  • Comment number 45.

    First of all There Will Be Blood is the best film of the decade and I would award all the kermodes to that film


    Best film - Ok, excluding the Dark Knight which might get nominated , either Of Time and City or Hunger

    Best Director - Steve McQueen or Terence Davies

    Best Actor - Michael Fassbender for Hunger and Eden Lake

    Best Actress - Jolie and and Sally Hawkins should get nominated so I'd say Kelly Reilly

    Best Screenplay - Of Time and City, Hunger or In Bruges

    Best Score - Carter Burwell whose scores for Before the Devil Knows Your Dead, In Bruges, Twilight and Burn After Reading - are all superior to the crap scores that are out these days

  • Comment number 46.

    Best Documentary - Man on Wire ( followed closly by Oil: A crude Awakening and CSNY: Deja Vu)

    Best Film : In Bruges

    Best Forign Film: Gomorrah ( followed closely by The Orpahange).

    Feel good ending to a movie :The Mist

    Worst film of the year :jumper

    I need more time to think of other deserving nominees.

  • Comment number 47.

    It's fairly amusing how Kermode means bedpan.

    I was reminded of this fact as I was watching 'Half Ton Son' the other night where an extremely obese teenager screamed out in pain whilst he was on the toilet
    exclaiming "I cannot work with this Kermode" or a phrase along those lines

    Therefore the awards are effectively called 'the toilet awards' LOL

    Now I've got your attention being the 47th comment and all I think 'King of Kong', the startling documentary from last year which you have never even mentioned, could desperately do with at least a nomination.

    I know it won't beat your cherished Of Time and the City but it reawakened a subculture I’m sure we had no idea existed. 100% character driven it proved to us that the greatest achievement portrayed on the silver screen last year was not tightrope walking between the twin towers but in fact reaching the final level of Donkey Kong!

    For more details, take a look at my blog

  • Comment number 48.

    I am greatly disappointed that the BBC have engaged Jonathan Ross to compère the 2009 BAFTA awards.
    He is a TV/Radio personality of great talent (although his judgement, as we know, is flawed), but he is not suited to this particular arena, in spite of his knowledge (?) of cinema. Last time around his humour was ill-judged, you could hear joke after joke simply dying. Was this contract agreed prior to his recent suspension? Are the BBC assuming that the substantial audience for this broadcast will be eagerly awaiting the 'bad boy's return'?
    If Stephen Fry no longer wants the gig, is there really nobody else of sufficient wit or public appeal to be in the frame? Use your imagination!

  • Comment number 49.

    Lets face it, I will be shocked to see best film go to another other than Terence Davies' 'Of Time and the City,' but I really believe the film of the year has to go to 'Hunger'.
    Never before have I walked out of a cinema and witnessed such a stunned silence as I did that day. It was remarkable.
    None of your usual "what did you think?" chit-chat nonsense or even applause that usually follows (which i hate!!!!) but instead there was this kind of silent agreement of the quality and greatness of what we had all just seen.
    It is one of those cinema experiences i will remember forever as i doubt i will never see anything like it again.
    I do agree that it was probably more potent and hit home harder to us from Belfast but I'd love to hear if anyone else had a similar experience and if they did, surely you cannot deny 'Hunger' the film of the year.

  • Comment number 50.

    Oh and I know you picked 'Sex and the City' as your worst film of the year but it had to be between;
    1. 'Jumper', a film which apparently is going to be turned into a trilogy and if so.. GOD HELP US ALL!!
    2. 'Eagle Eye', The closest I have come to walking out of a film. You got it spot on with the bayification but its worse. It wasn't even as good as a Bay film and let me tell you, thats saying something.
    3. 'Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the bla bla bla', Awful, just awful. John Hurt should be still embarrassed by the line, "the space between spaces,".. If your not gonna at least try to make a decent sequel then leave it alone.

  • Comment number 51.

    Best film - [REC]
    Best director- Frank Henenlotter (Bad Biology)
    Best actor - Thomas Turgoose (Somers Town)
    Best actress - Charlee Danielson (Bad Biology)
    Best screenplay - Teeth
    Best music - Twilight

    I haven't seen Of Time and the City - it never reached the Midlands. DVD ahoy!

  • Comment number 52.

    best music: frost/nixon.

    will the actual awards be recast this year so that a) they look as handsome as the real Dr Kermode b) they include bagpipes and/or ukulele?

  • Comment number 53.

    WALL-E for Best Actor!

  • Comment number 54.

    Now that the oscar nominations have been announced this can be done properly. Looking down the list this years nominations are pretty good especially for the Academy.

    Most notable absentees:

    Kristin Scott Thomas. Her performance in I've Loved You a Long Time is brilliant.
    I haven't seen all the other performances but it was definitely better than Kate Winslet in The Reader.

    Gomorrah. It should be nominated for its intentions alone. It's not perfect but I thought it was quite ambitious and really de-glamourised organised crime. It shouldn't win the oscar for best foreign film as I think Waltz With Bashir should but it deserves to be nominated ahead of The Baader Meinhoff Complex.

  • Comment number 55.

    Dear Dr,

    Waht about Benecio del Toro (Che) or Will Poulter (Son of Rambow) for best actor?

  • Comment number 56.

    and The Dark Knight for best music?

  • Comment number 57.

    Mark (note: this comment is in reference to your recent video pertaining to Blatty's "Legion"),

    I am Ryan - I run, officially sanctioned by Bill Blatty (we converse occasionally via e-mail). A friend of mine (whom you have spoken to, I believe) is currently gathering various data (some from Bill himself) for a book titled "The Exorcist III: From Concept To Novel To Screen". We are PRAYING that we uncover the original footage. We have had some leads thus far, but nothing concrete as yet.

    In any case, I just posted this story on the main page of both and If you read this comment and get the chance, please sign up at the forum over there and give your thoughts on the whole situation:



  • Comment number 58.

    I don't know about giving this particular film a kermode - it's unlikely that I'll ever see it. The distribution companies aren't convinced that there is an audience for an off-beat movie called 'Morris: A Life With Bells On' - even with a cast including Harriet Walter, Sir Derek Jacobi, Greg Wise and Sophie Thompson.

    There's a trailer for it here:

    I'd go and see it.

  • Comment number 59.

    Hello there, Doctor.

    Hope you're planning the Kermode Awards and let us see them soon.

    A lot of films have been mentioned here. All good stuff.
    But I just wanted to give Wendy and Lucy a shout out. Have you seen it? Hope it makes it to the awards.

  • Comment number 60.

    Hello Good Doctor

    A lot of good films have already been listed but I'm pretty sure no one has mentioned two of my favourite films of the past year.

    The Wave (Die Welle) - a brilliant film in German about a school project becoming a facist regime. Not long out of school myself I could really see the appeal of belonging to the wave. This should at least be up for best foreign language film.

    Jar City (Mýrin) - a bleak but intriguing insight into the lives of some Icelanders. Ingvar Eggert Sigurðsson is fantastically watchable as the sheep's head eating policeman and deserves some recognition.

    I agree with you in that a film being in the correct language makes it feel much more authentic and it's really not that hard to read subtitles - unless there's someone tall in front of you; sometimes I wish they were supertitles.

    I can't remember if you reviewed either film on Mayo's programme but would like to know your thoughts on them. Please consider them for your Kermodes.

  • Comment number 61.

    is it just me or does the Kermode look like Richard Nixon?

    'nough said.

  • Comment number 62.

    BEST FILM - 'There Will Be Blood'

    BEST DIRECTOR - 'Paul Thomas Anderson for 'There Will Be Blood''

    BEST ACTOR - 'Daniel Day-Lewis for 'There Will Be Blood'

    BEST ACTRESS - 'Sally Hawkins for 'Happy-Go-Lucky''

    BEST SCREENPLAY - 'Happy-Go-Lucky''

    BEST MUSIC - 'The Dark Knight'

  • Comment number 63.

    The only film where, after watching it, I wanted to fly to Seoul and give everyone involved a good kick up the backside and then a huge big kiss for the great rollercoaster ride I was given.

  • Comment number 64.

    My Nomination for The Kermode Audience Award:
    Of Time and The City
    (aka Yawn Time and The City)

    Kermode must be stripped of his doctorate for his praise of this trumped-up audio book! He has brought his academic qualification into disrepute, and has lost all credibility as a film reviewer!

    What’s wrong with this film? It’s incredibly boring. Whilst the pictures are largely in black and white – the overall colour is grey. Terrence Davies didn’t film any of the pictures, nor did he write the score – he simply wrote and read his self-indulgent narrative. And yet he’s about as Liverpudlian as Cherie Blair – he hasn’t lived there in years – and he hated The Beatles for heaven’s sake!

  • Comment number 65.

    My Nomination for The Kermode Audience Award:
    Of Time and The City
    (aka Yawn Time and The City)

    Kermode must be stripped of his doctorate for his praise of this trumped-up audio book! He has brought his academic qualification into disrepute, and has lost all credibility as a film reviewer!

    What's wrong with this film? It's incredibly boring. Whilst the pictures are largely in black and white - the overall colour is grey. Terrence Davies didn't film any of the pictures, nor did he write the score, he simply wrote and read his self-indulgent narrative. And yet he's about as Liverpudlian as Cherie Blair - he hasn't lived there in years - and he hated The Beatles for heaven's sake!

  • Comment number 66.

    dear mark

    many of the of comentees of your blog would faint become enveloped with murdorous rage and explode all at once if your anti-kermode award was given to sex on the city, i on the other hand (of sound mind and understanding) beleive that it should be so

    yes the film is awful in many ways as you have highlighted, it shows comercialism and the credit crunch uber yuppies on the big screen as idols (falsely i would add) but if not for this film I beleive that others of greater magnitude such as waltz with bashir, hunger and Milk could not be seen for their true merrit

    without a bad we cannot have a good and without that peice of hollywood filth I could not have watched Hunger with the same amount of appreciation for the directors hard work and artistic merrit.

    only a person who has starved can truly enjoy a feast and only a true cinema goer can appreciate the best by seeing its worst, watching Sex and the city makes you thankful for creidble and tallented film makers

  • Comment number 67.

    Dear Doctor,
    There Will Be Blood - Great music but basically a film produced by the HSE illustrating bad work practices in the extraction industry. The protagonist is a thin, angry man at the beginning, middle and end of the film. There are no worthy antagonists. Dan Day Lewis showing a range of emotions running from annoyed to angry. The film is a two and a half hour anecdote not a story. I felt no empathy for any of the characters. There is no change in any of the characters. There's no resonnance with today's oil/ religion relationship which they seem to suggest in the promos.Yes, there is hypochrisy in religion and business, there are driven people who are disproportionately ambitious, wow, let's make an unsubtle film about it. Over rated, overhyped thank god it's over.

  • Comment number 68.

    I thought Eddie Marsan was fantastic in 'Happy-go-lucky'.

  • Comment number 69.

    Cloverfield dared critics simply to list its precursors, and Mark Kermode obliged at length, but Cloverfield is a jewel in its own right. Torn wallpaper layers of over-recorded video give it a narrative depth and non-linearity absent from more naive camcorder flicks, and the effects team inserts a rampaging CGI creature into a shaking camera frame as if that stuff was easy. Unlike Emmerich’s Godzilla, Cloverfield uses its smaller, human-scale critters to glorious effect too, creating a genuine horror riff at the heart of this monster movie. Not as good as The Host, but how many films really are?

  • Comment number 70.

    I've got my own opinions on best film, but with "Of Time and the City" in the running my opinion is irrelevant (though if you're asking, Time and Winds).

    Best Actor: Michael Sheen, or alternatively Michael Sheen and Frank Langella to share for Frost/Nixon. Sheen should not have been overlooked by the big boys.

    Best Actress: Kristen Scott-Thomas in I've loved You So Long. Nuanced, subtle and beautifully rendered performance that in the hands of any other actress (I'm thinking of Wincyette) would have been rendered as Eastenders-style melodramatics. And a prime example of how an actress can successfully render a convincing and touching performance in a language which is not her own (granted that she has lived in France for years, but I was still mightily impressed).

  • Comment number 71.

    Brad Pitt for Best Supporting Actor in Burn After Reading. So good I'll never be able to take him seriously in any other film ever again.

    Frances McDormand for Best Actress, in the same film. Perfect performance, as usual, from a wonderful actress.

  • Comment number 72.

    Best Film - Patti Smith:Dream of Life - One of the most moving documentrys I've ever seen
    Best Actress should definetly go to Emmanuelle Seigner for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, her performance was amazing. Diving bell and the Butterffly should also be considered for best music, for the song recorded by Emmanuelle Seigner and Ultra Orange - Don't Kiss me Goodbye
    Best Director should go to Mike Leigh for Happy Go Lucky and Best actor should go to Philip Seymour Hoffman for Synecdoche, New York.

  • Comment number 73.

    Best Film - [Rec] - I would like to nominate [Rec] almost exclusively because it is the first horror film that has genuinely unsettled me in a very long time, and I even include the excellent, especially the "twist", but nowhere near as unsettling El Orphanto in that statement. Having been growing increasingly bored with main stream horror's opinion that only loud noises and jumps constitute scary, it is reaffirming to see new horror makers who understand that really scary films are able to gradually notch up the tension through story, visual cues, and sound to result in a truly unsettling experience - and by that I mean one that you are still unsettled by over the following days, not just one that scares you for the duration of the film, but that you forget about once it's ended.

    Best Score - [Rec] - For pretty much the reasons above and that the film would have been nowhere near as unsettling as it was if it wasn't for the subtle yet very creepy and unsettling score. Although you could argue the score in El Orphanto is equally good.

    Thank you.

  • Comment number 74.

    Boy trying to stop the downfall of western civilization. Is that a thankless job. Why because everyone in a position of power has already abased themselves before the devil. The people in power most of them are whores, that is how they got there. and good men who try and stop the downfall are usually left in a minority of one and then tortured. So should it surprise you that the end result is RAMBO 4!

  • Comment number 75.

    How about a lifetime achievement awards. And how about going back in retrospect? Do it for each year going back to 1900. 1972 SILENT RUNNING should have gotten best actor, Director, movie, and screenplay. And it was nominated for none of these.


    Why, because the money men didn't want an enviromental film to raise issues about global warming.

  • Comment number 76.

    Best Film: Let the right one in

    P.S Please make a top 10 list over your favourite films of all time, or "10 films you need to see".



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