The 1988 Critics Consensus Awards


Daniel Day-Lewis and Juliette Binoche in The Unbearable Lightness of Being

And now for something completely... unexpected. In retrospect, it makes total sense that the critics would have collectively chosen Philip Kaufman's The Unbearable Lightness of Being as their Best Picture of 1988. Yet their year-end picks both before and since have generally hewn closer to the major industry awards, particularly the Oscars, and so this, only their second ever CCA Best Picture winner not to have been nominated for the top Oscar, marks a significant break from convention. Indeed, so too does their Best Director pick, Chris Menges for A World Apart - a movie nominated for not a single Academy Award. Menges' movie also placed second in Picture and Screenplay, while Clint Eastwood's Bird was a near winner in two categories where it too failed to score Oscar nods: Supporting Actress (for Diane Venora) and Director (it actually tied for first here, but there are tie-breaker rules that put Menges out in front). And after David Cronenberg's Dead Ringers in third, one has to look as far down as fourth to find our first Oscar nominee in Picture: Mississippi Burning. Alan Parker's misguided drama is the only '88 title to win two awards (Frances McDormand's first, and Gene Hackman's record-setting third in Leading), meaning that Unbearable Lightness is our first CCA Best Picture winner with no other awards to its name here, in our 20th year. All the results below.


Best Picture

The Unbearable Lightness of Being (Philip Kaufman and Saul Zaentz)


Best Director

Chris Menges (A World Apart)


Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

Jodie Foster (The Accused)


Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

Gene Hackman (Mississippi Burning)


Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

Frances McDormand (Mississippi Burning)


Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

Alec Guinness (Little Dorrit)


Best Screenplay

Ron Shelton (Bull Durham)


Image Credit: MovieStillsDB

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