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National Board of Review Names Manchester by the Sea Best Film of the Year

by | November 29, 2016 | Comments

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The NBR announced today the 2016 winners of the National Board of Review Awards, naming Manchester by the Sea the best film of 2016. NBR President Annie Schulhof said, “Manchester by the Sea is a masterful film which explores love, loss, and redemption in a deeply moving and completely original way. We are thrilled to award it our Best Film, as well as to honor Barry Jenkins’ singular directorial vision for Moonlight.” Additionally to being named the best film of 2016, Manchester by the Sea took home the awards for Best Actor (Casey Affleck), Best Original Screenplay and Breakthrough Performance (Lucas Hedges) for a total of four trophies. Barry Jenkins’s Moonlight, winner of the Gotham Independent Award for Best Feature the day before, won both the Best Director (Barry Jenkins) and the Supporting Actress (Naomie Harris) categories. Read through for the full list of winners, and their top 10 and top 5 lists.

The National Board of Review award winners are chosen by a group of film enthusiasts, filmmakers, professionals, academics and students of varying ages and backgrounds. Last year, Mad Max: Fury Road was named Best Film, while The Martian took home the awards for Best Director, Best Actor and Best Adapted Screenplay.


Best Film:  Manchester by the Sea (2016) 96%
Best Director:  Barry Jenkins – Moonlight (2016) 98%
Best Actor: Casey Affleck – Manchester by the Sea (2016) 96%
Best Actress: Amy Adams – Arrival (2016) 95%
Best Supporting Actor: Jeff Bridges – Hell or High Water (2016) 97%
Best Supporting Actress: Naomie Harris – Moonlight (2016) 98%
Best Original Screenplay: Kenneth Lonergan – Manchester by the Sea (2016) 96%
Best Adapted Screenplay: Jay Cocks and Martin Scorsese – Silence (2016) 83%
Best Animated Feature: Kubo and the Two Strings (2016) 97%
Breakthrough Performance (Male): Lucas Hedges – Manchester by the Sea (2016) 96%
Breakthrough Performance (Female): Royalty Hightower – The Fits (2015) 96%
Best Directorial Debut: Trey Edward Shults – Krisha (2015) 95%
Best Foreign Language Film: The Salesman (2016) 96%
Best Documentary: O.J.: Made in America (2016) 100%
Best Ensemble:  Hidden Figures (2016) 93%
Spotlight Award: Creative Collaboration of Peter Berg and Mark Wahlberg
NBR Freedom of Expression Award:  Cameraperson (2016) 99%


Top Films


Top 5 Foreign Language Films


Top 5 Documentaries


Top 10 Independent Films


A gala hosted by Willie Geist will be held on January 4, 2017 at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York City to honor the winners.