BANSHEES wins Best Film, but Sarah Polley scores best Director for WOMEN TALKING. In our Female Focus sections, Viola Davis gets the nod for Outstanding Achievement and Danielle Deadwyler’s turn in TILL is designated the Breakthrough Performance of 2022. Emma Thompson takes AWFJ’s Grand Dame title and is honored for the bravest performance for GOOD LUCK TO YOU, LEO GRANDE. The talented Ana de Armas is deemed most deserving of a new agent to get her roles in better projects than BLONDE.

AWFJ has presented annual EDA Awards for 16 years, representing professional women critics’ collective perspectives on movies and cinema culture in the movie awards arena, where female critics and critical opinion are still greatly underrepresented. AWFJ honors female creatives in non-gender specific awards categories and in unique Female Focus categories designated for women only.  

“We are particularly proud that this year’s member-determined roster of nominees included a goodly number of female contenders in non-gender specific categories. and that we have female winners in those categories, as well, including Sarah Polley who receives the EDA Award for Best Director for the multi-nominated and awarded WOMEN TALKING.” said Jennifer Merin, President of the 95 members AWFJ. “We hope to see similar results at this year’s Oscars and various guild awards. as well as with other critics awards groups.” 

In preparation for the awards season, AWFJ tracks femme-helmed and femme-centric films released throughout the year. The 2022 list of EDA Award-eligible femme-helmed and/or femme-centric films includes more than 500 titles. Many of these female made movies are small budget productions that receive neither wide distribution nor critical consideration. This staggering number of independently produced films indicates the high level of female filmmaker proactivity in contradiction to the grim statistics consistently reported in major studies about female film production. AWFJ advocates for acknowledgment of these films and recognition for their filmmakers. 

Note: Managing Editor and Founder Lynn Venhaus has been a member of AWFJ since 2014, along with St. Louis colleagues Martha Baker, Diane Carson and Cate Marquis and former St. Louisan Michelle (McCue) Hannett, , managing editor of We Are Movie Geeks.


These awards are presented to women and/or men without gender consideration

Best Film

Colin Farrell and Kerry Condon in the film THE BANSHEES OF INISHERIN. Photo by Jonathan Hession. Courtesy of Searchlight Pictures. © 2022 20th Century Studios All Rights Reserved
  • TAR

Best Director

  • Sarah Polley – WOMEN TALKING
  • Gina Prince-Bythewood – THE WOMAN KING
  • Steven Spieiberg – THE FABELMANS
  • Charlotte Wells – AFTERSUN

Best Screenplay, Original

  • AFTERSUN – Charlotte Wells
  • THE FABELMANS – Steven Spielberg and Tony Kushner
  • TAR – Todd Field
  • THE WOMAN KING – Dana Stevens and Maria Bello

Best Screenplay, Adapted

  • ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT – Edward Berger, Lesley Patterson, Ian Stokell
  • GLASS ONION – Rian Johnson
  • SHE SAID – Rebecca Lenkiewicz
  • THE WHALE – Samuel D. Hunter
  • WOMEN TALKING – Sarah Polley and Miriam Toews
  • THE WONDER – Alice Birch, Emma Donoghue, Sebastian Lelio

Best Documentary

  • ALL THAT BREATHES – Shaunak Sen
  • DESCENDANT – Margaret Brown
  • FIRE OF LOVE – Sara Dosa
  • GOODNIGHT OPPY – Ryan White
  • THE JANES – Tia Lessen and Emma Pildes

Best Animated Film

  • GDT’S PINOCCHIO – Guillermo del Toro and Mark Gustafson
  • MARCEL THE SHELL WITH SHOES ON – Dean Fleischer-Camp
  • PUSS IN BOOTS: THE LAST WISH – Joel Crawford and Januel Mercado
  • THE SEA BEAST – Chris Williams
  • TURNING RED – Domee Shi
  • WENDELL & WILD – Henry Selick

Best Actress

  • Cate Blanchett – TAR
  • Viola Davis – THE WOMAN KING
  • Danielle Deadwyler – TILL
  • Vicki Krieps – CORSAGE
  • Emma Thompson – GOOD LUCK TO YOU, LEO GRANDE

Best Actress in a Supporting Role (tie)

  • Angela Bassett – WAKANDA FOREVER
  • Jessie Buckley – WOMEN TALKING
  • Hong Chau – THE WHALE
  • Janelle Monae – GLASS ONION

Best Actor

  • Austin Butler – ELVIS
  • Brendan Fraser – THE WHALE
  • Paul Mescal – AFTERSUN
  • Bill Nighy – LIVING
  • Jeremy Pope – THE INSPECTION

Best Actor in a Supporting Role

  • Brian Henry Tyree – CAUSEWAY
  • Eddie Redmayne – THE GOOD NURSE
  • Ben Wishaw – WOMEN TALKING

Best Ensemble Cast – Casting Director

  • TRIANGLE OF SADNESS – Pauline Hansson
  • WAKANDA FOREVER – Sarah Finn
  • THE WOMAN KING – Aisha Coley
  • WOMEN TALKING – John Buchan and Jason Knight

Best Cinematography (tie)

  • THE FABELMANS – Janusz Kaminski
  • EMPIRE OF LIGHT – Roger Deakins
  • TOP GUN: MAVERICK – Claudio Miranda
  • THE WOMAN KING – Polly Morgan

Best Editing

  • ELVIS – Jonathan Redmond and Matt Villa
  • TAR – Monika Willis
  • TOP GUN – Eddie Hamilton
  • THE WOMAN KING – Terilyn A. Shropshire
  • WOMEN TALKING – Christopher Donaldson, Rosalyn Kallop

Best Non-English-Language Film (tie)

  • RRR


These awards honor WOMEN only

Best Woman Director

WOMEN TALKING (2022) Rooney Mara, Claire Foy, and Jessie Buckley CR: Michael Gibson/United Artists Releasing
  • Chinoye Chukwu – TILL
  • Marie Kreutzer – CORSAGE
  • Gina Prince-Bythewood – THE WOMAN KING
  • Sarah Polley – WOMEN TALKING
  • Maria Schrader – SHE SAID
  • Charlotte wells – AFTERSUN

Best Woman Screenwriter

  • Rebecca Lenkiewicz – SHE SAID
  • Sarah Polley and Miriam Toews – WOMEN TALKING
  • Domee Shi – TURNING RED
  • Dana Stevens and Maria Bello – THE WOMAN KING
  • Charlotte Wells – AFTERSUN

Best Animated Female

  • Connie – Isabella Rossellni MARCEL THE SHELL WITH SHOES ON
  • Izzy – Keke Palmer – LIGHTYEAR
  • Kat – Lyric Ross. WENDELL & WILD
  • Kitty Softpaws – Salma Hayed – PUSS IN BOOTS: LAST WISH
  • Mei – Rosalyn Chiang- TURNING RED
  • Ming – Sandra Oh – TURNING RED
Danielle Deadwyler in “Till”

Best Woman’s Breakthrough Performance

  • Frankie Corio – AFTERSUN
  • Danielle Deadwyler – TILL
  • Thuso Mbedu – THE WOMAN KING
  • Amber Midthunder – PREY
  • Sadie Sink – THE WHALE

Outstanding Achievement by A Woman in The Film Industry

  • Viola Davis – For getting THE WOMAN KING made as her lifetime passion project and creating opportunities for other women creatives.
  • Nina Menkes and Maria Giese for making BRAINWASHED, analyzing and illustrating the misogynistic representation of women in Hollywood movies.
  • Domee Shi for being the first woman to direct a film for Pixar and for becoming Pixar’s VP of Creative
  • Jacqueline Stewart for ongoing advocacy of the underrepresented and becoming president of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures.
  • Michelle Yeoh- lifetime achievement award


Grand Dame Award for Defying Ageism

Emma Thompson
  • Jamie Lee Curtis
  • Viola Davis
  • Emma Thompson
  • Michelle Yeoh

Most Egregious Lovers’ Age Difference Award

  • CONFESS FLETCH – Jon Hamm born 1971 and Lorenza Izzo born 1989
  • CRIMES OF THE FUTURE – Viggo Mortensen born 1958 and Lea Sedoux born 1985
  • DEEP WATER – Ben Affleck born 1972 and Ana de Armas born 1988
  • EIFEL – Romain Duris born 1974 and Emma Mackey born 1996

She Deserves A New Agent Award (NOTE: This is not a put down. On the contrary, it suggests that the actor is better than the role she’s been given.)

  • Ana de Armas for BLONDE
  • Bryce Dallas Howard for JURASIC WORLD DOMINION
  • Margot Robbie for BABYLON
  • Rebel Wilson for SENIOR YEAR

Most Daring Performance

  • Cate Blanchett – TAR
  • Viola Davis – THE WOMAN KING
  • Danielle Deadwyler – TILL
  • Emma Thompson – GOOD LUCK TO YOU, LEO GRANDE

Time Waster Remake or Sequel Award

  • PINOCCHIO (Disney)

AWFJ Hall of Shame Award (Women and men are eligible)

  • Alec Baldwin and the crew of RUST for continuing to deny responsibility for the on set shooting that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins. The situation is still messy. A wrongful death lawsuit was settled, but the criminal investigation continues. In November, Baldwin sued crew members for giving him the loaded prop gun that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins. News reports say Baldwin also texted Hutchins’s husband, Matthew, saying that the gun was never meant to be fired at a particular camera angle.
  • BLONDE and Andrew Dominik
  • Will Smith for his behavior at the Oscars and in the aftermath
  • Harvey Weinstein for everything and forever

The Alliance of Women Film Journalists, Inc. (AWFJ) is a not-for-profit professional association of highly qualified female movie critics, reporters and feature writers working in print, broadcast and online media, dedicated to supporting work by and about women – both in front of and behind the cameras – through intra-group promotional activities, outreach programs and by presenting awards in recognition of outstanding accomplishments (the best and worst) by and about women in the movies. AWFJ was founded in 2006 by Jennifer Merin, Maitland McDonagh, Joanna Langfield and Jenny Halper. In addition to the year end awards, AWFJ presents EDA Awards at partner festivals, keeps an active and interactive record of fiction feature and documentary films by and/or about women, and/or are of particular interest to women because they focus on women’s issues. We welcome information that will allow us to keep our lists updated. Lists are made available to members and the general public on our Web site at For further information, contact AWFJ President Jennifer Merin at

The wild action, sci-fi and comedic adventure “Everything Everywhere All at Once” has been named Best Film of 2022 by the St. Louis Film Critics Association.

Writer-directors The Daniels’ chaotic tale of an overworked Chinese immigrant’s multiverse journey won five awards overall, including Michelle Yeoh for best actress. She plays Evelyn Wang, whose business is struggling, her marriage is on the rocks, and she has complicated relationships with her daughter and father.

As Evelyn’s milquetoast husband, Ke Huy Quan won supporting actor while Paul Rogers won for editing and The Daniels (Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert), who directed, were named in a tie for best original screenplay.

SLFCA announced its awards in 23 categories on Dec. 18, with honors spread out among 13 films.

“The Banshees of Inisherin,” “Elvis” and “Women Talking” each received three awards.

 Martin McDonagh tied with the Daniels for original screenplay, for his pitch-black comedy “The Banshees of Inisherin,” which is about friends at an impasse, who live on a remote Irish island in 1923, while Kerry Condon won best supporting actress as the smart and feisty Siobhan, sister to Colin Farrell’s Padraic, and Ben Davis won for his moody and rugged cinematography.

This is the third year the group has selected a woman for its director award — Chloe Zhao, “Nomadland,” in 2020; Jane Campion for “The Power of the Dog” in 2021; and now, Sarah Polley for “Women Talking.”

“Women Talking,” about the women in an isolated religious community deciding on what action to take after a series of sexual assaults in 2010, also won for best ensemble cast and for Hildur Guðnadóttir’s acoustic music score that taps into community and hope.

Catherine Martin won for designing costumes and with Karen Murphy for production design on her husband Baz Luhrmann’s electric “Elvis” biopic, which was also singled out for best soundtrack.

For best actor, Brendan Fraser was selected for his bravura performance in “The Whale,” playing a 600-lb. recluse grappling with loss and guilt while trying to reconnect with his daughter.

The regional critics group announced its annual nominations Dec. 11, with “The Banshees of Inisherin” leading with 11 nominations, followed by ‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’ with 10; ‘Women Talking’ and ‘The Fabelmans’ earned eight each. Those nominations are listed here:

For Special Merit recognition, the St. Louis Film Critics selected three people for the honor:  imprisoned Iranian director Jafar Panahi, whistleblower actress Ashley Judd and posthumously, influential musician-actor David Bowie.

SLFCA President Jim Tudor said the group wanted to recognize filmmaker Jafar Panahi, who was sentenced to six years in prison by the Iranian government for inquiring about the arrests of his fellow filmmakers Mohammad Rasoulof and Mostafa Al-Ahmad.

The international film community has denounced his imprisonment as unjust. His latest work, “No Bears,” was shown at the Venice Film Festival and New York Film Festival this fall.

Jafar Panahi

The SLFCA statements on the three Special Merits:

Jafar Panahi

“In recognition of the courage of imprisoned Iranian director Jafar Panahi and all those film professionals confronting political oppression in the pursuit of free speech, human rights, and artistic expression.”

Ashley Judd

“We recognize Ashley Judd for the bravery and courage she demonstrated in portraying herself in ‘She Said.’”

David Bowie

“After nominating the experimental documentary “Moonage Daydream,” we want to also honor the expansive and continuing cinematic presence of singer-songwriter and actor David Bowie, whose life and music continues to permeate and enrich the cinema landscape.”

Here’s the list of our 2022 SLFCA Awards winners and runners-up:

Stephanie Hsu, Michelle Yeoh, Ke huy Quan of “Everything Everywhere All at Once”


Everything Everywhere All at Once

Runner-up Women Talking

Best Director – Sarah Polley, “Women Talking”

Runner-up: The Daniels (Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert) , “Everything Everywhere All at Once”

Best Actor – Brendan Fraser, “The Whale”

Runner-up: Austin Butler, “Elvis”

Best Actress – Michelle Yeoh, “Everything Everywhere All at Once”

Runner-up: Danielle Deadwyler, “Till”

Best Supporting Actor – Ke Huy Quan, “Everything Everywhere All at Once”
Runner-up: Brendan Gleeson, “The Banshees of Inisherin”

Best Supporting Actress – Kerry Condon, “The Banshees of Inisherin”

Runners-up: (tie) Angela Bassett, “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” and Janelle Monae, “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery”

Women Talking

Best Ensemble – Women Talking

Runner-up: Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery

Best Adapted Screenplay – She Said Rebecca Lenkiewicz; based on the book She Said by Jodi Cantor and Megan Twohey, and on the New York Times investigation by Jodi Kantor, Megan Twohey, and Rebecca Corbett

Runner-up: Women Talking – Sarah Polley, adapted from book by Miriam Toews

Best Original Screenplay – tie “The Banshees of Inisherin,” Martin McDonagh, and The Daniels (Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert) “Everything Everywhere All at Once”

Runner-up: “The Menu,” Will Tracy and Seth Reiss

Best Cinematography – Ben Davis, “The Banshees of Inisherin”

Runner-up: Greig Fraser, “The Batman”

Best Editing – Paul Rogers, “Everything Everywhere All at Once”

Runner-up: Matt Villa and Jonathan Redmond, “Elvis “

Best Production Design – Elvis, Catherine Martin and Karen Murphy 

Runner-up: “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery,” Rick Heinrichs

Best Costume Design – “Elvis,” Catherine Martin 

Runner-up: “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever,” Ruth E. Carter

Best Visual Effects – Avatar: The Way of Water”

Joe Letteri, Richard Baneham, Eric Saindon, and Daniel Barrett

Runner-Up: Everything Everywhere All at Once

Best Music Score – “Women Talking,” Hilda Guðnadóttir

Runner up (tie): Carter Burwell, “The Banshees of Inisherin”;  Michael Giacchino, “The Batman” and John Williams, “The Fabelmans.”

Best Soundtrack – Elvis

Runner-up: Moonage Daydream

Best Action Film – Top Gun: Maverick
Runner-up: RRR

Best Comedy Film – Weird: The Al Yankovic Story

Runner-up: Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery

Best Horror Film – Nope
Runner-up: X

Best Animated Film – Marcel the Shell with Shoes On

Runner-up: Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio

Marcel the Shell with Shoes On

Best International Feature – Decision to Leave

Runner-up: RRR

Best Documentary Feature – All the Beauty and the Bloodshed

Runner-up (tie): Good Night Oppy and Moonage Daydream

Best Scene – Sam Fabelman meets one of his idols on the studio lot in “The Fabelmans”

Runner-up: Iceman meets with Maverick in “Top Gun: Maverick”

Founded in 2004, the St. Louis Film Critics Association is a nonprofit organization of professional film reviewers who regularly publish current and timely film criticism, support local productions and festivals, and enhance public education, awareness, and appreciation of films. Vetted members are affiliated with qualifying media outlets in the St. Louis metropolitan region. (Note: critics Alex McPherson and Lynn Venhaus are members).

For the awards, eligible films are those that opened in the greater St. Louis area or had an online premiere during the 2022 calendar year – including those film that were given awards-qualifying runs in 2021 but were not available to all SLFCA members until 2022. Films slated for release in early 2023 are also eligible if a press screening, DVD screener, or screening link was provided to all SLFCA members.

For more information, visit

In addition, follow us on Twitter (@stlfilmcritics) and “Like” our Facebook page.

The Banshees of Inisherin

The Critics Choice Association (CCA) Women’s Committee is pleased to announce “Women Talking” (United Artists Releasing) and “The Sex Lives of College Girls” (HBO Max) will receive the Seal of Female Empowerment in Entertainment. Called the “SOFEE,” the Seal recognizes outstanding new films and television series that illuminate the female experience and perspective through authentically told female-driven stories.

“Women Talking” focuses on a group of Mennonite women who gather to determine what action to take after rampant sexual abuse is condoned by the male leaders of the community. Written, directed, and produced by Sarah Polley from the novel by Miriam Toews, the drama explores the themes of sisterhood, autonomy, and justice through the eyes of women who have lived their entire lives inside a closed, conservative, rural community.

“I am so thrilled our film has been included amongst the incredible films receiving this honor, and so grateful for this initiative to encourage more films that tell women’s stories,” wrote Polley in a letter to the CCA membership. “Sometimes, when embarking on a project like this one, it’s easy to feel lost and unsure. Especially when you are telling a story about a community that has never been told. You must break and remake yourself in the process of finding your true voice. Thank you for creating this seal which helps a lot of us who have been lost to feel seen.”

The Sex Lives of College Girls

“The Sex Lives of College Girls” is a female-led scripted comedy series following four very different freshman girls at a prestigious college in Vermont. Led by a diverse cast that stars Pauline Chalamet, Amrit Kaur, Alyah Chanelle Scott, and Reneé Rapp, these young women juggle their educational aspirations with their newfound freedom and burgeoning sex lives. Created and written by Mindy Kaling and Justin Noble, and with a majority of female writers and directors, the series showcases young women  navigating the beginning of adulthood through diverse, relatable and witty stories. 

“With diverse female representation behind and in front of the camera, ‘The Sex Lives of College Girls’ is the perfect example of what we are looking for when awarding the SOFEE,” said Tara McNamara, Chair of the CCA Women’s Committee. “Women write and produce the series, and their point of view shines through in the sometimes relatable, always hilarious stories that may bring back cringey memories for many women. The show’s sex positive message is reflected differently for each of the four main characters, allowing women from all walks of life to see elements of their own journeys represented on-screen.”

Both “Women Talking” and “The Sex Lives of College Girls” received perfect scores in the numerical formula that is used to determine if new titles, nominated by CCA Women’s Committee members, are eligible for a SOFEE. Qualifying projects will have a prominent female character arc, give female characters at least equal screen time to male characters, have female leaders behind the scenes, and pass elements highlighted in the Bechdel test. To be considered, new film and television releases must possess an artistic and storytelling value and exceptionality, and score at least 7 out of a possible 10 points in the SOFEE rubric, which can be found at There are no limits or quotas governing the number of SOFEE seals the CCA may grant.

The Seal of Female Empowerment in Entertainment is issued by the CCA Women’s Committee. Members include Tara McNamara (Chair), Hillary Atkin, Semira Ben-Amor, Christina Birro, Lauren Bradshaw, Jamie Broadnax, TJ Callahan, Natasha Gargiulo, Toni Gonzales, Teri Hart, Laura Hurley, Susan Kamyab, Louisa Moore, Gayl Murphy, Mary Murphy, Patricia Puentes, Christina Radish, Amanda Salas, Rachel Smith, Sammi Turano, and Lynn Venhaus, as well as CCA board member Paulette Cohn.

WOMEN TALKING (2022) Rooney Mara, Claire Foy, and Jessie Buckley CR: Michael Gibson/United Artists Releasing

About the Critics Choice Association (CCA)

The Critics Choice Association is the largest critics organization in the United States and Canada, representing more than 600 media critics and entertainment journalists. It was established in 2019 with the formal merger of the Broadcast Film Critics Association and the Broadcast Television Journalists Association, recognizing the intersection between film, television, and streaming content. For more information, visit: