Boyhood, Richard Linklater's acclaimed coming-of-age drama shot over a 12-year period, was named best film of 2014 on Monday by the New York Film Critics Circle. It also won awards for director Linklater and supporting actress Patricia Arquette.
The honors are the first major critics awards announced this season.
Timothy Spall won top actor for his role as British artist J.M.W. Turner in Mike Leigh's Mr. Turner. Marion Cotillard was named best actress for her performances in two films, The Immigrant, as a Polish emigre in New York, and Two Days, One Night, as a young mother desperate to save her job.
J.K Simmons earned the supporting-actor award as a relentless music teacher in Whiplash. Screenplay honors went to Wes Anderson for The Grand Budapest Hotel, and Darius Khondji won the cinematographer award for The Immigrant. The Lego Movie was selected top animated film, and Poland's Ida, directed by Pawel Pawlikowski, earned the foreign film honor.
Laura Poitras' Citizenfour received nonfiction film honors. Jennifer Kent's The Babadook was selected best first film.
A special award went to Adrienne Mancia, who, as a curator at New York's Museum of Modern Art for more than 30 years, "helped shape the movie-going tastes of New Yorkers by bringing the work of filmmakers like Bernardo Bertolucci, Manoel De Oliveira and Marco Bellocchio to the United States."
Founded in 1935, the New York Film Critics Circle is made up of critics from newspapers, magazine, and online sites.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the New York Film Critics rarely agree on their top choices. In fact, the latter group's website states that its awards are "a principled alternative to the Oscars honoring aesthetic merit in a forum that is immune to commercial pressures." Last year, the critics named American Hustle best film of 2013; 12 Years a Slave won the best-picture Oscar. The last time the two groups agreed on the top film was 2011's The Artist.