Told you these guys were completely out of their minds. This morning came the announcement of the Golden Globe nominations, and as usual there were plenty of surprises: some pleasant, some shocking. Let's jump in with some analysis:
BEST PICTURE- DRAMA
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
The biggest losers in this shortlist? Well, Milk to be sure. The brilliant biopic seemingly wasn't as impressive or relevant enough to make it one of the five best dramas of the year. Also, the year's biggest movie The Dark Knight was also left off. I'm not totally surprised by that one, but I'm sure there are a large group of Batman fanatics not particularly happy with that decision. I've only seen one of the nominated films (Frost/Nixon) though I plan to see Slumdog Millionaire first thing this weekend. Unfortunately, they decided to nominate mostly movies that people won't see till Christmas or January, which certainly makes it hard for a general audience members (like me), who can only see them when they decide to come around. EARLY-BIRD PREDICTION: Benjamin Button snags the award and solidifies itself as the Oscar front-runner.
"Sweet, Cate, this movie is totally getting an Oscar nom, now!"
BEST PICTURE- COMEDY/MUSICAL
Burn After Reading
Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Not too bad a list here, though Mamma Mia! seems more like an obligatory musical choice (they couldn't go with Tropic Thunder which is still the funniest movie I've seen this year). Other than Mia! I was able to see all the films nominated, and I had modest enjoyment of most of them. I'm particularly happy to see recognition for In Bruges, which people had seemed to forget since it was released all the way in January. EARLY-BIRD PREDICTION: This seems like an easy win for the amazing Mike Leigh film Happy-Go-Lucky.
"We REALLY can't think of a better musical this year? Doesn't CADILLAC RECORDS count? Dammit."- HFPA member
BEST ACTOR- DRAMA
Leonardo DiCaprio, REVOLUTIONARY ROAD
Frank Langella, FROST/NIXON
Sean Penn, MILK
Brad Pitt, THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON
Mickey Rourke, THE WRESTLER
Milk's sole nomination comes here (they couldn't justify not recognizing Penn's work). Pitt pulls a bit of a surprise for Benjamin Button, which seems to be not much of an "actor's movie". The only surprise comes with Clint Eastwood not coming out with a nom for Gran Torino. DiCaprio's nomination for Revolutionary Road (and the film's nomination for Best Picture) has finally put that film back on track with it's Oscar campaign, though it still has some work to do. EARLY-BIRD PREDICTION: Despite ignoring the film, they give it to Penn. No real reasoning, that's just my hunch.
BEST ACTRESS- DRAMA
Anne Hathaway, RACHEL GETTING MARRIED
Angelina Jolie, CHANGELING
Meryl Streep, DOUBT
Kristen Scott-Thomas, I'VE LOVED YOU SO LONG
Kate Winslett, REVOLUTIONARY ROAD
Rachel Getting Married's one Globe nomination comes here with Hathaway's Best Actress nod. Jolie establishes some ground with her Changeling nomination, though I still think she has an uphill battle for an Oscar nom (why on Earth didn't they recognize her last year for A Mighty Heart!?!?!). Scott-Thomas finally gets something going, since she seems to be losing the critics battle with Sally Hawkins. Winslet and Streep both obvious choices. EARLY-BIRD PREDICTION: Revolutionary's rocky road gets a boost when they give the award to Winslet.
BEST ACTOR- COMEDY/MUSICAL
Javier Bardem, VICKY CRISTINA BARCELONA
Colin Farrell, IN BRUGES
James Franco, PINEAPPLE EXPRESS
Brendan Gleeson, IN BRUGES
Dustin Hoffman, LAST CHANCE HARVEY
Bardem gets nominated for moping around and sleeping with beautiful women in Vicky Cristina Barcelona. The brilliant comic duo of In Bruges, Farrell and Gleeson, both get well-deserved nominations. Franco is the best and funniest part of Pineapple Express, so it's good to see him get recognized for that. I'd be hard-pressed to find anyone who's actually seen Last Chance Harvey, so Hoffman's nom seems more like the HFPA saying, "Uh, you're pretty awesome, and we have no idea who else to nominate". EARLY-BIRD PREDICTION: Logical thinking says that the two In Bruges nominations will cancel out, but who could they award on that list other than Brendan Gleeson?
BEST ACTRESS- COMEDY/MUSICAL
Rebecca Hall, VICKY CRISTINA BARCELONA
Sally Hawkins, HAPPY-GO-LUCKY
Frances McDormand, BURN AFTER READING
Meryl Streep, MAMMA MIA!
Emma Thompson, LAST CHANCE HARVEY
The best part of Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Rebecca Hall, finally gets notice, while Sally Hawkins gets nominated for Happy-Go-Lucky. McDormand gets nominated for her whimsical portrayal in Burn After Reading--it's really more of a supporting role, but the Globes don't car much about catregory fraud. As for Streep and Thompson, [see Hoffman in Best Actor- Comedy/Musical]. Streep now has 23 Globe nominations. EARLY-BIRD PREDICTION: Happy-Go-Lucky is the only comedy film that is really building buzz, so Hawkins walks away with it.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Tom Cruise, TROPIC THUNDER
Robert Downey Jr., TROPIC THUNDER
Ralph Fiennes, THE DUCHESS
Phillip Seymour Hoffman, DOUBT
Heath Ledger, THE DARK KNIGHT
This is certainly the most puzzling category. It's further proof that as much as the Academy hates Cruise (no win for Magnolia, no nomination for Rain Man), the Globes will literally nominate him for ANYTHING. His Tropic Thunder co-star, Robert Downey Jr. gets nominated for a much more hilarious performance. Fiennes gets a big surprise nomination for The Duchess (why don't people realize that this "supporting" talk Fiennes is getting should be for In Bruges?). The only two nominations people saw coming were Hoffman's priest in Doubt, and Ledger's iconic Joker in The Dark Knight (this was The Dark Knight's only nomination). EARLY-BIRD PREDICTION: To make up for ignoring the film otherwise, they give it to Ledger, posthumously.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Amy Adams, DOUBT
Penelope Cruz, VICKY CRISTINA BARCELONA
Viola Davis, DOUBT
Marisa Tomei, THE WRESTLER
Kate Winslet, THE READER
The Amy Adams nomination for Doubt was easy to see, even though I don't think she'll get much recognition outside of this. Her co-star, Davis, seems to be ready for an Oscar nom, herself, as everybody says that her one scene seems to be the film's emotional high point. Winslet got a second nomination for The Reader, despite numerous claims that she is actually the lead role. Marisa Tomei continues her late-career renaissance as she gets nominated for her stripper role in The Wrestler. Penelop Cruz.... again. EARLY-BIRD PREDICTION: Cruz has been on an absolute tear in the early going, and I don't see it stopping here--she wins.
Danny Boyle, SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE
Stephen Daldry, THE READER
David Fincher, THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON
Ron Howard, FROST/NIXON
Sam Mendes, REVOLUTIONARY ROAD
No Jonathon Demme, no Christopher Nolan, no Gus Van Sant. I think it's safe to say that this list, more than the rest, really sucks. They literally just copied and pasted the nominees for Best Drama, and put the directors on. No originality, very conservative choices. I don't have much else to say. EARLY-BIRD PREDICTION: Fincher gets his first award of the season for Benjamin Button.
Simon Beaufoy, SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE
David Hare, TRE READER
Peter Morgan, FROST/NIXON
Eric Roth & Robin Swicord, THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON
John Patrick Shanley, DOUBT
Another sucky list. The HFPA obviously decided that there was not one ORIGINAL screenplay worth commemorating, and once again, took a more conservative route. When you decide to not differentiate between Adapted and Original, you tend to leave out some excellant things (like Jenny Lumet's brilliant screenplay for Rachel Getting Married). EARLY-BIRD PREDICTIONS: They award Slumdog Millionaire not necessarily for its screenplay, but because of the valiant fight it's putting up so early this season.