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And The Winners Are.....Women Film Critics Circle Awards 2011

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The Women Film Critics Circle is an association of 57 women film critics and scholars from around the country and internationally, who are involved in print, radio, online and TV broadcast media.

They came together in 2004 to form the first women critics' organization in the United States, in the belief that women's perspectives and voices in film criticism need to be recognized fully. WFCC also prides itself on being the most culturally and racially diverse critics group in the country by far, and best reflecting the diversity of movie audiences.

Critical Women On Film, a presentation of The Women Film Critics Circle, is their journal of discussion and theory, and a gathering of women's voices expressing a fresh and differently experienced perspective from the primarily male dominated film criticism world. Critical Women On Film is online at: Criticalwomen.

BEST MOVIE BY A WOMAN: TIE
The Iron Lady
We Need To Talk About Kevin

BEST MOVIE ABOUT WOMEN:
The Help

BEST STORYTELLER:
The Iron Lady: Abi Morgan

BEST ACTRESS:
Viola Davis: The Help

BEST ACTOR:
George Clooney: The Descendants

BEST COMEDIC ACTRESS:
Melissa McCarthy: Bridesmaids

BEST YOUNG ACTRESS:
Shailene Woodley: The Descendants

BEST FOREIGN FILM:
The Hedgehog

BEST FEMALE IMAGES:
The Whistleblower

WORST FEMALE IMAGES:
Melancholia

BEST MALE IMAGES:
The Descendants

WORST MALE IMAGES:
Hangover 2

BEST DOCUMENTARY BY OR ABOUT WOMEN:
Semper Fi: Always Faithful

BEST FAMILY FILM:
Hugo

BEST ANIMATED FEMALES
Puss 'N Boots

BEST EQUALITY OF THE SEXES:
The Debt

COURAGE IN ACTING:
Glenn Close: Albert Nobbs

THE INVISIBLE WOMAN AWARD: Tie*
Hiam Abbass: Miral
Michelle Williams: Meek's Cutoff

BEST UNRELEASED MOVIE:
Miss Representation

WOMEN'S WORK: BEST FEMALE ENSEMBLE:
The Help

BEST SCREEN COUPLE:
The Artist: Berenice Bejo and Jean Dujardin

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD: Tie*
Kathy Bates
Cicely Tyson

ACTING AND ACTIVISM AWARD:
Elizabeth Taylor

ADRIENNE SHELLY AWARD
The Whistleblower

JOSEPHINE BAKER AWARD
The Help

KAREN MORLEY AWARD
Albert Nobbs

MOMMIE DEAREST WORST SCREEN MOM OF THE YEAR AWARD
Judi Dench: J. Edgar

ADRIENNE SHELLY AWARD: For a film that most passionately opposes violence against women

JOSEPHINE BAKER AWARD: For best expressing the woman of color experience in America

KAREN MORLEY AWARD: For best exemplifying a woman's place in history or society, and a courageous search for identity

COURAGE IN ACTING: [Taking on unconventional roles that radically redefine the images of women on screen]

THE INVISIBLE WOMAN AWARD: [Performance by a woman whose exceptional impact on the film dramatically, socially or historically, has been ignored]

ADRIENNE SHELLY AWARD: Adrienne Shelly was a promising actress and filmmaker who was brutally strangled in her apartment in 2006 at the age of forty by a construction worker in the building, after she complained about noise. Her killer tried to cover up his crime by hanging her from a shower rack in her bathroom, to make it look like a suicide. He later confessed that he was having a "bad day." Shelly, who left behind a baby daughter, had just completed her film Waitress, which she also starred in, and which was honored at Sundance after her death.

JOSEPHINE BAKER AWARD: The daughter of a laundress and a musician, Baker overcame being born black, female and poor, and marriage at age fifteen, to become an internationally acclaimed legendary performer, starring in the films Princess Tam Tam, Moulin Rouge and Zou Zou. She also survived the race riots in East St. Louis, Illinois as a child, and later expatriated to France to escape US racism. After participating heroically in the underground French Resistance during WWII, Baker returned to the US where she was a crusader for racial equality. Her activism led to attacks against her by reporter Walter Winchell who denounced her as a communist, leading her to wage a battle against him. Baker was instrumental in ending segregation in many theaters and clubs, where she refused to perform unless integration was implemented.

KAREN MORLEY AWARD: Karen Morley was a promising Hollywood star in the 1930s, in such films as Mata Hari and Our Daily Bread. She was driven out of Hollywood for her leftist political convictions by the Blacklist and for refusing to testify against other actors, while Robert Taylor and Sterling Hayden were informants against her. And also for daring to have a child and become a mother, unacceptable for female stars in those days. Morley maintained her militant political activism for the rest of her life, running for Lieutenant Governor on the American Labor Party ticket in 1954. She passed away in 2003, unrepentant to the end, at the age of 93.

Prairie Miller is a NY multimedia journalist online, in print and on radio, and on WBAI/Pacifica National Radio Network's Arts Express. Read more reviews by Prairie Miller. Contact her through NewsBlaze.

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