The movie award season is definitely begun as The Gotham Awards, which focus on independent films, and the New York Critics Circle awards, which have shown the Oscar frontrunners, have been and gone. The next set prizes to be handed out are from the National Board Of Review.

Spike Jonze
Spike Jonze won Best Director for 'Her'

Notoriously these awards are given to movies and actors that don't win or even get nominated at the prestigious Oscars ceremony, 'Zero Dark Thirty' won on Best Film, Best Director and Best Actress last year but was left empty handed at the big dance.

Hopefully this is not the case for Spike Jonze as his romantic flick 'Her' picked up the top prize this year, winning Best Film and he also received the award for Best Director.

Watch the 'Her' trailer here

The film is set in the not-so-distant and it attempts to depict how humans become too reliant on technological devices. Though the film carries a sci-fi label, it is an insightful story of romance and human emotion.

Joaquin Phoenix plays 'Theodore Twombly', a complex LA writer who becomes very lonely after his wife (Rooney Mara) leaves, to tackle this he download's a new "operating system" named 'Samantha' (Scarlett Johansson's voice) who has the power to evolve.

Joaquin Phoenix in 'Her'

'Twombly' starts to see 'Samantha' more than a companion, the plot follows their journey from starting out as friends until they become romantic, although the love-tale is between a human and technology, it manages to meet a sincere middle ground.

"Spike Jonze is one of the most talented and visionary filmmakers working today," said Annie Schulhof, the president of the National Board of Review (via Reuters).

Johansson has already picked up a Best Actress award for her role at a film festival in Rome, Italy on November 16th, but controversially the same role won't be eligible for a Golden Globe due to Johansson not appearing in the film, only her voice does.

The National Board of Review awards will be presented in New York on January 7th 2014.

See the full list of winners here

'Her' official poster