award season

National Board of Review Names Mad Max: Fury Road Best Picture, But Don’t Start Filling Out Your Oscar Pool Just Yet

Jasin Boland +6142150189
Instead of Furiosa, she’s temporarily named Honored-a. Photo: Jasin Boland/Warner Brothers

In one of the first truly interesting results of the awards season, as it tends to be every year, the National Board of Review has named Mad Max: Fury Road its best film of the year.

The National Board of Review, as the press release describes, is a “select group of film enthusiasts, filmmakers, professionals, academics, and students” that has been “[dedicating] its efforts to the support of domestic and foreign cinema as both art and entertainment” for 106 years. (Presumably not the same film enthusiasts, filmmakers, professionals, academics, and students because, jeez, talk about burying the lede. Who cares about Mad Max! There are immortal film students.)

The point is, many of these awards bodies tend to be mysterious, so don’t take this as a sign that Mad Max is all of a sudden guaranteed to be a gate-crasher at the Oscars. Last year the NBR made the genuinely idiosyncratic decision to recognize A Most Violent Year as the best film of 2014, a decision that didn’t quite set the dominos falling for J.C. Chandor’s mostly under-the-radar ’80s crime epic. The year prior they went with Her, which at least snagged an Academy nomination.

Aside from Mad MaxThe Martian and The Hateful Eight proved popular with the NBR. And by the time February rolls around, expect this Best Actress win to be buried deep in the back of wherever Brie Larson’s planning to keep her trophies.

The full list of winners is below:

Best Film 
Mad Max: Fury Road 

Best Director 
Ridley Scott, The Martian

Best Actor 
Matt Damon, The Martian

Best Actress
Brie Larson, Room

Best Supporting Actor
Sylvester Stallone, Creed

Best Supporting Actress 
Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight

Best Original Screenplay 
Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight

Best Adapted Screenplay
Drew Goddard, The Martian

Best Animated Feature 
Inside Out

Breakthrough Performance 
Abraham Attah, Beasts of No Nation; Jacob Tremblay, Room

Best Directorial Debut 
Jonas Carpignano, Mediterranea 

Best Foreign Language Film 
Son of Saul

Best Documentary

William K. Everson Film History Award
Cecilia De Mille Presley

Best Ensemble 
The Big Short

Spotlight Award
Sicario for Outstanding Collaborative Vision

NBR Freedom of Expression Award 
Beasts of No Nation and Mustang

National Board of Review Gives Mad Max Top Honor