The Fifties for 2011: Cuts and Cues
Best Film Editing
Oliver Bugge Coutté for Beginners, because associative leaps help us feel the work of memory while edits lend the aging an unusual energy and early middle-age a worrisome inertia;
Paul Tothill for Hanna, because Wright and his team once again prove their mettle with set-pieces but also generate electricity and tension in choreographed cross-cuts;
Ivan Lebedev for How I Ended This Summer, because the chilly and bleary-eyed Arctic longueurs, the rhythm of daily tasks, and the escalation of tension all persist and enrich each other;
Benjamin Heisenberg and Andrea Wagner for The Robber, because without losing a hold on the protagonist's alienation, the film keeps coherent pace with his hammering heart, plotting action expertly; and
Hank Corwin, Jay Rabinowitz, Daniel Rezende, Billy Weber, and Mark Yoshikawa for The Tree of Life, because edits evince a symphonic feel for when to enter or leave a shot or a sequence, whether cutting mid-action or dilating out to abstraction.
Honorable mentions in alphabetical order by film title to Shûichi Kakesu for Caterpillar, Bahman Kiarostami for Certified Copy, Óscar Figueroa for Leap Year, Patricio Guzmá and Emmanuelle Joly for Nostalgia for the Light, Marc Vives for Putty Hill, Rui Mourão and João Pedro Rodrigues for To Die Like a Man, and Sean Albertson, Matt Chesse, John Gilroy, and Aaron Marshall for Warrior, which people should be buying tickets to see.
Best Sound (Mixing and Editing)
Ahmed Al-Ibrahim, Christopher Scarabosio, et al. for Hanna, for modulations andwhere subtlety would hamper the funwhomping extremities of silence and sound, including delicious flaunting of super score;
Vladimir Golovnitsky, et al. for How I Ended This Summer, for using natural and abstract sounds to establish rhythms, denote aberrations, get inside Pavel's head, and imbue a radioactive hum of tension;
Mandell Winter et al. for Meek's Cutoff, for helping to keep this unplotted exodus somewhere between a dirt-in-your-shoes reality and a folkloric parable of Americans seeking their way;
Craig Berkey, Erik Aadahi, et al. for The Tree of Life, for the gorgeous pastiche of classical quotations, and for boyhood pops and hushes, plus the soft and mighty sounds of worlds coming into being; and
Akritchalerm Kalayanamitr, Koichi Shimizu, Richard Hocks, et al. for Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, because although Joe has recorded Thai jungles before, plus Thai offices, plazas, and housing modules, their buzzing soundscapes still entrance.
Honorable mentions to the teams headed by Sylvain Brassard for Heartbeats and Daniel Iribarren and Ansgar Frerich for Le Quattro volte.