With just days to go until Oscar nominations are announced, the Writers Guild of America has unveiled its list of nominees for their top screenplay awards. As expected, many of these are films that have picked up plenty of accolades already. It’ll surprise no one to see that Zero Dark ThirtyMoonrise Kingdom, and Lincoln are among the contenders. But they’ve made room for some more offbeat choices as well, including LooperPerks of Being a Wallflower, and The Master. (Jason Reitman should be pleased.) Hit the jump to see the list.

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There’s a lot to be said for timing when it comes to film awards, and in that respect things couldn’t have worked out better for Kathryn Bigelow‘s Zero Dark Thirty. While most audiences won’t even have a chance to see the film until early next year, the first screenings of the movie have drawn rave reviews. And now it has picked up what will likely be the first of many awards.

Today the New York Film Critics Circle voted on awards for 2012, and Zero Dark Thirty and Lincoln were the big winners, with nothing scored by The Master, Django Unchained, Les Miserables, or other potential awards faves. Kathryn Bigelow took Best Director and her movie won Best Film, which is the same dual wins the filmmaker enjoyed in 2009 before The Hurt Locker went on to Oscar success. Get the full list of recipients below. Read More »

When a particularly brutal crime makes headlines, the understandable public demand is for the pepetrators to be found, tried, and punished as soon as possible — partially out of concern for public safety, and partially out of a desire to see the monsters get their due. But in cases when even the cops and experts cave to mob mentality, prioritizing speediness over fairness or accuracy, the results can be devastating for innocents who get caught in the crossfire.

The Central Park Five, a new documentary by Ken Burns, Davd McMahon, and Sarah Burns, explores one such incident. In 1989, five black and Latino teenagers were apprehended and convicted for the vicious sexual assault of a 29-year-old jogger in Central Park. They were then freed years later after a serial rapist stepped up to confess he’d committed the crime alone, raising the question of how the justice system could have failed these youths so badly. Watch the new trailer after the jump.

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