‘Jane’ Wins Top Prize at Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards

Other winners at the second annual event included “Kedi,” “Cries From Syria,” “Ex Libris” and “The Vietnam War”

Brett Morgen’s Jane Goodall documentary “Jane” was named the best nonfiction film of 2017 at the second annual Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards, which were held on Thursday evening at BRIC in Brooklyn, New York.

Ten different films were given awards by the Broadcast Film Critics Association and Broadcast Television Journalists Association, with no film receiving more than one honor.

The Best Director category was a tie between Evgeny Afineevsky for “Cries From Syria” and Frederick Wiseman for “Ex Libris: The New York Public Library.”

Ceyda Torun’s film about cats in Istanbul, “Kedi,” was named Best First Documentary, while the Most Innovative Documentary category resulted in another tie, this one between “Dawson City: Frozen in Time” and “Last Men in Aleppo.”

The awards for the best political, sports and music documentaries went to “Abacus: Small Enough to Jail,” “Icarus” and “Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives,” respectively.

The song “Jump” from the documentary “Step” won the award for the best song from a nonfiction film.

Because of the blurred lines between film and television documentaries, Critics’ Choice organizers made a last-minute decision to combine the nominees from both media in most categories. Two categories for television series remained, with Ken Burns’ “The Vietnam War” winning for Best Documentary Series and the long-running “American Masters” winning for Best Ongoing Documentary Series.

Penn Gillette hosted the ceremony, which also presented honorary awards to Joe Berlinger and Errol Morris.

The Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards winners:

Best Documentary: “Jane”
Best Director (TIE): Evgeny Afineevsky, “Cries from Syria” and Frederick Wiseman,
“Ex Libris: The New York Public Library”
Best First Documentary: “Kedi”
Best Political Documentary: “Abacus: Small Enough to Jail”
Best Sports Documentary: “Icarus”
Best Music Documentary: “Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives”
Best Song in a Documentary:”Jump” from “Step,” written by Raphael Saadiq, Taura Stinson and Laura Karpman, performed by Cynthia Erivo
Best Documentary Series: “The Vietnam War”
Best Ongoing Documentary Series: “American Masters”
Most Innovative Documentary (TIE): “Dawson City: Frozen Time” and “Last Men in Aleppo”
Critics’ Choice Lifetime Achievement Award: Errol Morris
Critics’ Choice Impact Award: Joe Berlinger