2016: #1 Manchester By the Sea

Directed by
: Kenneth Lonergan
Written by: Kenneth Lonergan
Starring: Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams, Kyle Chandler, and Lucas Hedges
Distributor: Roadside Attractions
Country: USA
Language: English
Rating: R
Running Time: 137 Minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Date released: 11/18/2016
Date seen: 11/26/2016
Worldwide Box Office Gross: $46 Million
# of Oscar nominations: 6 (Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, and Best Original Screenplay)
# of Golden Stake Nominations: 4 (Supporting Actress, Supporting Actor, Actor, and Original Screenplay)
# of Golden Stakes Won: 2 (Original Screenplay and Actor)

Last year I praised the movie Room more than a lot of people did, in part because I saw it as being the ultimate cinematic balancing act.  Manchester by the Sea pulls off something similarly impressive by basically just getting all the little things so perfect and then sticking the landing at the end.  It’s not a movie that’s littered with technical innovations but it also doesn’t need to be, it’s a movie that restrains itself in all the right places and “goes for it” when it needs to as well.  Kenneth Lonergan’s screenplay is densely rich, you can tell he’s put novelistic levels of thought into each one of his characters and has delved into their psyches in each scene and has also directed his script in such a ways as to never overplay things or to allow his actors to hit a false beat.  Casey Affleck is piercing in the lead role, but so are his co-stars like Lucas Hedges, Michelle Williams, Kyle Chandler, Gretchen Mol, and C.J. Wilson and what’s really miraculous about the whole film is that even though it has tragedy at its center it’s somehow able to inject the movie with quite a bit of comedy and to have that feel completely in keeping with its tone.

#2 Year End Honors