'Life Is Sweet' is film critics' best of 1991

January 06, 1992|By New York Times

LIFE IS SWEET," Mike Leigh's gastronomic view of family life in an English suburb, was voted the best film of 1991 by the National Society of Film Critics, a 35-member group representing critics from New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and other cities. Alison Steadman and Jane Horrocks, who play a mother and daughter in the film, were voted best actress and best supporting actress, respectively.

River Phoenix was voted best actor for his performance as a narcoleptic male hustler in "My Own Private Idaho," and Harvey Keitel was named best supporting actor for roles in three films: "Bugsy," "Thelma and Louise" and "Mortal Thoughts."

David Cronenberg was voted both best director and best screenwriter for his adaptation of William S. Burroughs' novel "Naked Lunch."

Roger Deakins' cinematography for "Barton Fink" won the group's award in that category, and its choice for best

documentary was Jennie Livingston's "Paris Is Burning."

Krzysztof Kieslowski's "Double Life of Veronique" was voted the year's best foreign film.

The group elected to give a special award for best experimental film to Guy Maddin for his intricate, virtually wordless "Archangel." It also voted a citation "to Peter Delpeut for the compilation film 'Lyrical Nitrate,' an evocation of the beauty and fragility of our film heritage."

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