Ang Lee's BrokebackMountain continued thewinning streak it started at the Venice Film Festival, taking best picture anddirector citations from the Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA) in itsdeliberations on Saturday.

The western, which focuses on a love affair between twocowboys, opened in the US over the weekend to some of the best reviews of theyear and a per-site screen average of over $100,000.

The LA criticsvoted A History Of Violence and its director David Cronenberg runner-up in both categories.

Brokeback's star Heath Ledger was pipped to thepost for the best actor award, coming in second to Phillip Seymour Hoffman for Capote. Capote, written by Dan Futterman, also tied inthe screenplay vote with Noah Baumbach's script for The Squid And The Whale, and Catherine Keener was cited as bestsupporting actress for Capote and three other films - The Ballad Of Jack AndRose, The 40 Year-old Virgin and The Interpreter.

Michael Haneke'sCache which opens inthe US on Dec 23 was named best foreign language films, with Wong Kar-wai's 2046 in the runner-up position. Wong'sproduction designer William Chang won in the production design category.

Meanwhile VeraFarmiga was named best actress for her performance as an addict in DebraGranik's Down To The Bone, which won her a special jury prize for acting at the SundanceFilm Festival 2004 and was finally released in the US on a limited basisthrough Laemmle/Zeller Films on Nov 25 nearly two years later. Judi Dench wasrunner-up in the actress category for Mrs Henderson Presents.

Werner Herzog's Grizzly Man was named best documentary, William Hurt was best supportingactor for A History Of Violence and Wallace And Gromit: The Curse Of The Were-rabbit was named best animated film.

Major studio movies didn't have astrong showing with LAFCA, with end-of-year pictures such as Munich,Syriana, Memoirs Of A Geisha and KingKong failing to make an impression. Sony'sSony Classics division won in five categories, while Universal's Focus Features, whichbacked Brokeback Mountain, hadtwo.


Picture: Brokeback Mountain
Runner-up: A History Of Violence

Director: Ang Lee, Brokeback Mountain
Runner-up: David Cronenberg, A History Of Violence

Actor: Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Capote
Runner-up: Heath Ledger, Brokeback Mountain

Actress: Vera Farmiga, Down To The Bone
Runner-up: Judi Dench, Mrs Henderson Presents

Supportingactor: William Hurt, A History Of Violence
Runner-up: Frank Langella, GoodNight, And Good Luck

Supporting actress: Catherine Keener, Capote, TheBallad Of Jack And Rose, The 40 Year Old Virgin and The Interpreter
Runner-up: Amy Adams, Junebug

Screenplay (tied): Dan Futterman, Capote & Noah Baumbach, The Squid And The Whale

Foreign-language film: Cache, directed by Michael Haneke
Runner-up: 2046,directed by Wong Kar-wai

Documentary/non-fiction film: Grizzly Man, directed by Werner Herzog
Runner-up: Enron: The Smartest Guys In The Room directed by Alex Gibney

Animation: Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit directed by Nick Park and Steve Box

Cinematography: Robert Elswit, Good Night, And Good Luck
Runner-up: Christopher Doyle, Kwan Pun Leung & Yiu-Fai Lai, 2046

Productiondesign: William Chang, 2046
Runner-up: Jim Bissell, Good Night, And Good Luck

Music/score: JoeHishaishi & Youmi Kimura, Howl's Moving Castle

Runner-up:Ryuichi Sakamoto, Tony Takitani

New generation:Terrence Howard

Careerachievement: Richard Widmark

Independent/experimental:La Commune (Paris, 1871) directed by Peter Watkins

Special citations:Film critic Kevin Thomas for his contributions to film culture in Los Angeles.

David Shepard, Bruce Posner and the Anthology Film Archive to honor UnseenCinema, an eight discDVD set collection of avant-garde, underground films from 1894-1941.