NEW YORK -- “Manchester by the Sea” was named best film by the National Board of Review, which lavished four awards on Kenneth Lonergan’s New England portrait of grief.
In the awards announced Tuesday, “Manchester by the Sea” also took best actor for Casey Affleck’s lead performance, best screenplay for Lonergan’s script and best male breakthrough performance for Lucas Hedges.
“Moonlight,” the coming-of-age drama that cleaned up at Monday’s Gotham Independent Film Awards , was awarded best director for Barry Jenkins, and best supporting actress for Naomie Harris.
Amy Adams won best actress for her turn in the cerebral sci-fi thriller “Arrival.” Best supporting actor went to Jeff Bridges for his retiring sheriff in “Hell or High Water.”
The not-yet-released “Hidden Figures,” about black mathematicians at NASA in the 1960s, was honored for its ensemble. It stars Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae and Kevin Costner.
“Manchester by the Sea” is seen as a favorite this year in a field also crowded by “La La Land,” ‘’Moonlight” and “Fences.” Later this week, the New York Film Critics Circle and the Los Angeles Film Critics Association will chime in with their picks.
Recent National Board of Review best picture winners have been somewhat eccentric. “Mad Max: Fury Road,” ‘’A Most Violent Year” and “Her” were named best feature the last three years.