The 1979 Critics Consensus Awards


Meryl Streep and Howard Duff in Kramer vs. Kramer

It's rather too easy to look back upon the embarassment of riches offered up by American cinema in 1979 and deride the Academy for picking the pallid character drama from the director of Places in the Heart. Easy, but not necessarily apt, as even the critics agreed that Kramer vs. Kramer was the Best Picture of 1979. Such was the result of the Critics Consensus Awards for that year (as I'm carrying them out retrospectively, and entirely subjectively), which indeed opted for character pictures all the way. Apocalypse Now, Manhattan, The Marriage of Maria Braun - all movies generally regarded as more stylistically innovative, and all featured to some extent or another, but none won awards. In truth, the year's award winners themselves placed second across four of the seven categories between them as well, so those other titles didn't stand much of a chance. This year also marks the first appearance of one Meryl Streep, the CCA's most-nominated actor. Check out the 1979 CCA winners below.


Best Picture

Kramer vs. Kramer (Robert Benton and Stanley R. Jaffe)


Best Director

Robert Benton (Kramer vs. Kramer)


Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

Sally Field (Norma Rae)


Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

Peter Sellers (Being There)


Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

Meryl Streep (Kramer vs. Kramer)


Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

Melvyn Douglas (Being There)


Best Screenplay

Steve Tesich (Breaking Away)


Image Credit: MovieStillsDB

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