George Clooney's black and white thriller GOOD NIGHT, AND GOOD LUCK has joined controversial western Brokeback Mountain as the Academy Awards Best Film frontrunners after landing the National Board of Review's top prize.

Philip Seymour Hoffman (CAPOTE) and Felicity Huffman (TRANSAMERICA) were named Best Actor and Best Actress respectively when the NBR announced its annual honours on Saturday (10DEC05).

The 2005 NBR Awards will be presented at the annual gala on 10 January (06) at Tavern on the Green in New York City.

In naming Good Night, And Good Luck as the film of the year, the board also named its other nine favourite movies of 2005. They were Brokeback Mountain, Capote, CRASH, HISTORY OF VIOLENCE, Match Point, Memoirs Of A Geisha, Munich, SYRIANA and Walk the Line.

Meanwhile, Brokeback Mountain kept up pace with Clooney's film by claiming the top nominations at the New York Film Critics Circle.

The film was named Best Picture and Ang Lee claimed the Best Director prize. Heath Ledger took home the Best Actor honour for his role in the film, while Reese Witherspoon was named Best Actress for her portrayal of JUNE CARTER CASH in WALK THE LINE.