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Drive My Car by Ryusuke Hamaguchi
Drive My Car by Ryusuke Hamaguchi

The National Society of Film Critics awarded Drive My Car the honor of Best Picture of 2021 along with Best Director for Ryusuke Hamaguchi, Best Actor for Hidetoshi Nishijima and Best Screenplay.

Other top honors went to Flee for Best Non Fiction Film, Penélope Cruz won Best Actress honors for ‘Parallel Mothers’ and Anders Danielsen Lie won Best Supporting Actor for ‘The Worst Person in the World’.

2021 National Society Of Film Critics Awards


*1. “Drive My Car” (48)

2. “Petite Maman” (25)

3. “The Power of the Dog” (23)

Per our rules, because this year’s Best Picture is not in the English language, there is no award for Best Foreign-Language Film.


*1. Ryusuke Hamaguchi (46) – “Drive My Car” and “Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy”

2. Jane Campion (36) – “The Power of the Dog”

3. Céline Sciamma (28) – “Petite Maman”


*1. “Drive My Car” (46) – Ryusuke Hamaguchi and Takamasa Oe

2. “Parallel Mothers” (22) – Pedro Almodóvar

3. “Licorice Pizza” (20) – Paul Thomas Anderson


*1. “Flee” (41)

2. “Procession” (28)

2. “The Velvet Underground” (28)


*1. “The Green Knight” (52) – Andrew Droz Palermo

2. “The Power of the Dog” (40) – Ari Wegner

3. “Memoria” (35) – Sayombhu Mukdeeprom


*1. Penélope Cruz (55) – “Parallel Mothers”

2. Renate Reinsve (42) – “The Worst Person in the World”

3. Alana Haim (32) – “Licorice Pizza”


*1. Ruth Negga (46) – “Passing”

2. Ariana DeBose (22) – “West Side Story”

3. Jessie Buckley (21) – “The Lost Daughter”


*1. Hidetoshi Nishijima (63) – “Drive My Car”

2. Benedict Cumberbatch (44) – “The Power of the Dog”

3. Simon Rex (30) – “Red Rocket”


*1. Anders Danielsen Lie (54) – “The Worst Person in the World”

2. Vincent Lindon (33) – “Titane”

3. Mike Faist (26) – “West Side Story”

3. Kodi Smit-McPhee (26) – “The Power of the Dog”


SPECIAL CITATION for a Film Awaiting U.S. Distribution: Jean-Gabriel Périot’s documentary “Returning to Reims”


1. Maya Cade for founding the Black Film Archive, which expands knowledge of and access to Black films made between 1915 and 1979, and includes her critical essays that define the project and consider the films in relation to each other and to the cinema overall.

2. The late Bertrand Tavernier and Peter Bogdanovich, distinguished critic-filmmakers who never lost their passion for other people’s movies and film history. Both crowned their careers with invaluable chronicles of their engagement with the cinema: Tavernier with the with the documentary “My Journey Through French Cinema” and the books “50 Years of American Cinema” and “American Friends,” and Bogdanovich with the books “Who the Devil Made It” and “Who the Hell’s In It.”


We dedicate this year’s awards to the memory of two esteemed colleagues and longtime members who are no longer with us. Morris Dickstein brought warmth, enthusiasm and prodigious analytic skills as a literary critic and cultural historian to writing about movies in journals like Dissent and Partisan Review and in books like “Dancing in the Dark: A Cultural History of the Great Depression.” Michael Wilmington wrote beautifully and passionately about cinema as a critic for many publications, including the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times, and co-authored the critical study “John Ford.” They will both be deeply missed.

We also dedicate our awards, with deepest appreciation and gratitude, to Liz Weis, who is stepping down after serving 47 years as Executive Director of the National Society of Film Critics. For her decades of extraordinary leadership and tireless service to the organization, we owe her an immeasurable debt.

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