A truly outstanding year for British Film – afterthoughts on the winners of the 2013 BAFTA Awards

2013 has been a truly outstanding year for film, and British film in particular. The BAFTAs are evidence of this, nominating brilliant British films such as Les Misérables, Anna Karenina and Skyfall amongst others.

I was overjoyed by a few of the winners, including Anne Hathaway (who was bound to win after her breathtaking performance as the fragile Fontaine in Les Misérables), and Christoph Waltz who absolutely deserved the award he won for Django Unchained.

Daniel Day Lewis is another actor I was thoroughly pleased won an award. His performance as the compassionate Abraham Lincoln was outstanding, and I’m not all that familiar with his films, but I am going to make an effort to see more of them based on how much I loved his acting in Lincoln.

Anna Karenina won a few awards, but unfortunately not as many as I would have liked. I loved its cinematography and definitely thought it should have won over Life of Pi. Although Anna Karenina did have a few moments where
the characters, Keira Knightley in particular, had a sickly yellow skin tone, and so the lighting may have been a bit off as it didn’t look all that great, it is still worthy of a cinematography award, especially the way in which it engages with the choreographed dancing in the ballroom scene, sweeping around the characters with the same elegance that made the ballroom scene of Beauty And The Beast (1991) so memorable. There was also a random use of a cantered angle that seemed a little out of place and so for that reason, I’m not surprised it didn’t win the cinematography award.

I thought Argo won far more awards than it should have done. And although I would have loved for Great Expectations to win an award for best costume, I thought Anna Karenina was truly deserving of that award as Jacqueline Durran’s costumes were absolutely stunning, making me notalgic for an era long gone by.

I’m still getting over the surprise of Anna Karenina not being nominated for a best adapted screenplay award, considering Tolstoy’s novel is such a well-loved classic. Les Misérables should have also been nominated for this award. I love Victor Hugo and perhaps it is because the film was adapted primarily for an opera or because it is all singing perhaps, that it was robbed of this award nomination.

I was very happy to see Tessa Ross win the Outstanding Contribution To British Cinema award!! She has worked on some of the best British films ever made, including Never Let Me Go, Billy Elliot, Submarine, and This Is England amongst so many others.

Alan Parker was honoured with the BAFTA Fellowship award this year, and admittedly, I’m not at all a fan of Alan Parker. However, I know he is considered a brilliant filmmaker (I haven’t seen enough of his work to really judge – although Angela’s Ashes is BRILLIANT!! And I would also love to see Bugsy Malone and have wanted to for ages now), and

he has done a lot for British film, so I’m really pleased he was given the award.

Overall it was a brilliant ceremony, just a lot of awards I wish had been given to different films/people (I wish Marion Cotillard had won an award, that Frankenweenie had won the award for best animation, and that Samantha Barks had even been nominated for an EE Rising Star award). However, the films nominated were all brilliant in one way or another, and those I have seen I have loved, and those I haven’t I am going to make sure I watch before the Oscars!!

You can find a full list of the BAFTA winners and nominees here.


About Enchanted By Film

1st class Film uni graduate who has a love for films old and new. I write for Diegesis and Film Matters film journals. Currently saving to do a Masters and PhD in Film. My ambition is to be a University lecturer on film and write about film academically. I also wouldn't mind working for the BFI or writing for Sight and Sound :-)
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