Saturday, December 19, 2009

Golden Globe Nominations

As a lot of my readers already know the nominees for the Golden Globes were announced and I thought I'd offer my perspective on what was nominated.

By and large I pretty much felt the nominations were disappointing but that is mostly because it has been a disappointing year filled with mediocre movies. But the show must go on in good years and bad. The Golden Globe nominees, in my opinion, reflect what a weak year the movie industry has had. Of the nominated films I have seen 12 of them; "Inglourious Basterds", "The Hurt Locker", "Up in the Air", "500 Days of Summer", "Julie & Julia", "The Hangover", "Brothers", "Invictus", "The Informant!", "An Education", "Duplicity" and "Up". Nearly all of them were average, entertaining films. Some I liked more than others and I even reviewed a couple; "Duplicity" and "Up". Some of the nominated movies haven't opened in Chicago yet; "Nine", "The White Ribbon", "The Last Station", "Lovely Bones". Others only opened yesterday; "Broken Embraces" and "Avatar". I'm sure I'll see them before the award show, not that it matters anyway, since I don't watch award shows.

Since I haven't seen all of the nominees I can't offer predictions really but I would like to discuss a few things.

The nominees for "Best Picture" Drama are; "Avatar", "Inglourious Basterds", "Precious", "The Hurt Locker" and "Up in the Air". I have seen three of the nominated pictures and it strikes me as a race really between two of the films; "The Hurt Locker" and "Up in the Air". Already "The Hurt Locker" has won several "Best Picture" awards from various Film Critic associations including; Boston, Los Angeles, New York and Austin. It has a total of three Golden Globe nominations. "Up in the Air" won the National Board of Review award for "Best Picture" and the Southeastern Film Critics Award. The screenplay won in L.A. and New York. It received six Golden Globe nominations. Personally I prefer "Up in the Air" but if "The Hurt Locker" does win and if it were to eventually win an Oscar it wouldn't bother me. It would be a much better choice than "Slumdog Millionaire" (2008) last year. A film which I regard as one of the worst "Best Picture" Oscar winners of all time. "The Hurt Locker" would be an improvement but not really an inspired choice.

In the comedy category the nominees are; "500 Days of Summer", "It's Complicated", "Julie & Julia", "Nine" and "The Hangover". In general I would say the comedy nominees tend to be weaker films compared to their dramatic counterparts. For the life of me I can't figure out the hoopla surrounding "Julie & Julia". Meryl Streep, a fine actress, is even nominated for her performance as Julia Childs and there is talk of an Oscar nomination. For what? In a better year would such a film and a performance be nominated? I seriously don't think so. This award seems to be "Nine's" to lose. I haven't seen the movie yet but there is buzz surrounding it. It is the movie I am most looking forward to seeing. If it can live up to the hype it could be a sweeping victory for the film and a strong indication what to expect when the Oscar nominees are announced. This could be the film to break "The Hurt Locker"'s winning streak.

One thing that really disappointed me was there were no nominations for "Me & Orson Welles". A smaller movie which the critics have been praising; every critic I read gave the movie a favorable review; Roger Ebert, Rex Reed, A.O. Scott, Elizabeth Weitzman and Michael Wilmington, though the public hasn't "found" it yet. A shame. It is one of the best movies I've seen this year. I hope it gets some Oscar nominations. I have a theory that sometimes a movie is too good to be nominated. The award shows are primarily popularity contest in my estimation and unless a studio really pushes hard for a nomination for a particular film, it will go unnoticed. It is more about Hollywood politics than quality. I'm afraid this might be happening with "Me & Orson Welles".

You can read a full list of the nominated films here:

The awards will be given out Jan. 17, 2010