It is an exciting time for movie awards fanatics. With all of the nominations coming out, we are only a month away from when we finally get a peek at what will be nominated for this year's Academy Awards! Unfortunately, the Golden Globes have always been perceived in some way as a predecessor to the event and for no good reason. Each year, they mistake celebrity for quality with very few wins for the right people. However, that's kind of why they are my favorite whipping boy. I love to criticize their choices with a heavy hand. The following is a look at the nominations that were released this morning and my brief opinions about each category.
|Left to right: Bryan Cranston and Ben Affleck in Argo|
Life of Pi
Zero Dark Thirty
PRO: I am going to argue that the triad of Best Picture front runners at the Oscars will be: Argo, Zero Dark Thirty, and Les Miserables. Both of the drama genre films are listed here. Also, great to see Life of Pi gaining momentum. Such a dazzling film and this will probably help eventually land a Best Picture slot.
CON: I think that I am the only one who really thinks that Lincoln is overrated. It is a competent film, but an entertaining, award worthy film? No. This is a case that I believe is the result of high caliber people working together to make just an apt. movie. Also, I am disappointed that The Master is not present.
SHOULD WIN: I am leaning towards Argo, though with the traction that it is getting, I may eventually sway to Zero Dark Thirty.
WILL WIN: Zero Dark Thirty
|Left to right: Kara Hayward and Jared Gilman in Moonrise Kingdom|
Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
Salmon Fishing in the Yemen
Silver Linings Playbook
PRO: Moonrise Kingdom got a nomination! My favorite movie of the year got a Best Picture nomination! This is great news for Oscar contention. Also, glad to see Les Miserables still holding strong.
CON: Everything else looks like nonsense. The Golden Globes do this every year where they butcher the Comedy or Musical category. I am fine with Best Exotic Marigold Hotel getting nominated, as I feel that it has a following, but Salmon Fishing in the Yemen? Who was even talking about that film two days after its release? This is the biggest nonsense on this list.
SHOULD WIN: Moonrise Kingdom
WILL WIN: Les Miserables, of course. It looks to be the Best Musical Ever.
|Suraj Sharma in Life of Pi|
Ben Affleck, Argo
Kathryn Bigelow, Zero Dark Thirty
Ang Lee, Life of Pi
Steven Spielberg, Lincoln
Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained
PRO: Great to see Ang Lee staying strong. I feel like he earns it if just for the way he visually turned the landscape into a beautiful portrait. Also, Ben Affleck did a fantastic job with Argo, so I won't be offended if this takes priority.
CON: Steven Spielberg made Lincoln feel cold. The only benefit to this movie was cinematography. Where's The Master when you need it?
SHOULD WIN: Ben Affleck for Argo
WILL WIN: Either Affleck or Kathryn Bigelow for Zero Dark Thirty, which is looking more likely everyday.
|Joaquin Phoenix in The Master|
Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Richard Gere, Arbitrage
John Hawkes, The Sessions
Joaquin Phoenix, The Master
Denzel Washington, Flight
PRO: The least offensive category so far. Nothing here worthy of complaining about. On the bright side, Joaquin Phoenix is one step closer to that Oscar nomination and hopeful win.
CON: The idea that Denzel Washington got nominated for Flight is great and all, but I am sure that there could be a more deserving performance. I still argue that Suraj Sharma is the unsung hero for Life of Pi. He deserves a nomination.
SHOULD WIN: Joaquin Phoenix for The Master.
WILL WIN: Daniel Day Lewis for Lincoln. I honestly don't think it is great as it is expectedly good, but people seem to love it. Also, it is the year of "He could win his third Oscar!" hype, and I feel that is fueling this more than anything.
|Jessica Chastain in Zero Dark Thirty|
Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty
Marion Cotillard, Rust and Bone
Helen Mirren, Hitchcock
Naomi Watts, The Impossible
Rachel Weisz, The Deep Blue Sea
PRO: Another solid category. Glad to see Marion Cotillard and Jessica Chastain still holding in.
CON: I'm sure that we could have nominated more conventional nominees like Kiera Knightley for Anna Karenina or Quevenzhane Wallis for Beasts of the Southern Wild. While this doesn't kill Oscar momentum entirely, it does serve as a setback.
SHOULD WIN: Jessica Chastain for Zero Dark Thirty
WILL WIN: Jessica Chastain for Zero Dark Thirty
|Hugh Jackman in Les Miserables|
Jack Black, Bernie
Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook
Hugh Jackman, Les Miserables
Ewan McGregor, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen
Bill Murray, Hyde Park on Hudson
PRO: Hugh Jackman for Les Miserables is a good sign at his Oscar potential. Also, in an interesting move, Jack Black for Bernie seems to be giving that film good momentum.
CON: Is Bill Murray really that good in Hyde Park on Hudson that we overlook so much else? Also, what is up with Salmon Fishing in the Yemen? It is only diluting the category to a list of obvious single winners.
SHOULD WIN: Hugh Jackman for Les Miserables
WILL WIN: Hugh Jackman for Les Miserables
|Left to right: Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper |
in Silver Linings Playbook
Emily Blunt, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen
Judi Dench, Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
Maggie Smith, Quartet
Meryl Streep, Hope Springs
PRO: At least Jennifer Lawrence for Silver Linings Playbook doesn't look embarrassing.
CON: Nominating Emily Blunt for comedy in Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is as effective as nominating Emily Blunt for comedy in Looper. Also, can we stop nominating the old hats just because we ran out of ideas? I mean, Meryl Streep? Maggie Smith? Judi Dench? This category is doomed.
SHOULD WIN: Jennifer Lawrence for Silver Linings Playbook. She has long been considered the front runner in this category and there is no doubt that this will be an easy win for her against the old hats doing another mediocre set of performances.
WILL WIN: Jennifer Lawrence for Silver Linings Playbook
|Marion Cotillard in Rust and Bone|
Amour, Michael Haneke
A Royal Affair, Nikolaj Arcel
The Intouchables, Olivier Nakache, Eric Toledano
Kon Tiki, Joachim Rønning, Espen Sandberg
Rust and Bone, Jacques Audiard
PRO: I think that we have the big contenders for the category here. Still, I think that Amour is going to be the front runner.Nice to see The Intouchables and Rust and Bone get slots.
CON: I just saw Holy Motors and I am having trouble accepting its absence on any list.
SHOULD WIN: Amour
WILL WIN: Amour
Rise of the Guardians
PRO: Wreck-It Ralph got nominated, and that is a great sign in my hopes that it will win Best Picture provided that Paranorman does not.
CON: No Paranorman for Hotel Transylvania and Rise of the Guardians? It's like nobody saw Paranorman and just really wants to meet Adam Sandler. I am fine writing off Brave, but Paranorman's absence is my biggest offense from this year's group of nominations.
SHOULD WIN: At this point, let's just give it to Wreck-It Ralph.
WILL WIN: In an uninspired choice, Brave.
|Tommy Lee Jones in Lincoln|
Alan Arkin, Argo
Leonardo DiCaprio, Django Unchained
Philip Seymour Hoffman, The Master
Tommy Lee Jones, Lincoln
Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
PRO Another solid category, and one that I cannot find too many complaints about. Maybe two Django Unchained nominations will prove excessive, but it is a good sign for the film's Oscar chances, especially for Leonardo DiCaprio.
CON: Are we sure that we're not overlooking anyone from Les Miserables for Christoph Waltz's position?
SHOULD WIN: Philip Seymour Hoffman for The Master
WILL WIN: Philip Seymour Hoffman for The Master
|Anne Hathaway in Les Miserables|
Amy Adams, The Master
Sally Field, Lincoln
Anne Hathaway, Les Miserables
Helen Hunt, The Sessions
Nicole Kidman, The Paperboy
PRO: Amy Adams as the unsung second best part of The Master deserves more traction than she has gotten. It is nice to see her nominated here. Also, there is good speculation that Anne Hathaway can take it all, and if that trailer is any signification, she will.
CON: I wonder if Nicole Kidman in The Paperboy is really that good, though that is more from lack of awareness. Also, Sally Field for Lincoln is having another unfair "She could win her third Oscar!" buzz that has totally overblown the quality of the actual film.
SHOULD WIN: Anne Hathaway for Les Miserables
WILL WIN: Anne Hathaway for Les Miserables
|Left to right: Jamie Foxx and Christoph Waltz (facing away) |
in Django Unchained
Mark Boal, Zero Dark Thirty
Tony Kushner, Lincoln
David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook
Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained
Chris Terrio, Argo
PRO: Excellent group of screenplays here. None that are too worth complaining about.
CON: Was Silver Linings Playbook really that good? I felt that it was very contrived and obvious, and the "comedy" was not there. Structurally, I have problems with the portrayal of mental illness and I don't find it to be a fully satisfying film lacking of tropes.
SHOULD WIN: Quentin Tarantino for Django Unchained. I know little about the story, but his always tend to be the most entertaining to listen to. However, Chris Terrio for Argo was equally entertaining and I'm glad he's considered.
WILL WIN: Mark Boal for Zero Dark Thirty. It happened last time Tarantino and Bigelow went head to head, and the tides, I feel, haven't turned yet.
|Left to right: Jim Broadbent and Tom Hanks|
Mychael Danna, Life of Pi
Alexandre Desplat, Argo
Dario Marianelli, Anna Karenina
Tom Tywker, Reinhold Heil, Johnny Klimek, Cloud Atlas
John Williams, Lincoln
PRO: Another great line-up, and I am ecstatic that Cloud Atlas is capable of winning now. Also, the Anna Karenina score is pretty excellent and fun to play. Nice shout outs to Life of Pi and Argo.
CON: John Williams is a brilliant composer, but his work on Lincoln is not his best. Where's Jonny Greenwood for The Master? Where's Benh Zeitlin for Beasts of the Southern Wild?
SHOULD WIN: Tom Tykwer, Reinhold Heil, Johnny Klimek for Cloud Atlas. Amazing score. Please listen to it when you have time.
WILL WIN: John Williams for Lincoln. I don't know why, but even when he puts in mediocre work, he wins.
|Daniel Craig in Skyfall|
“For You” from Act of Valor
“Not Running Anymore” from Stand Up Guys
“Safe and Sound” from The Hunger Games
“Skyfall” from Skyfall
“Suddenly” from Les Miserables
PRO: Les Miserables got a Best Original Song nomination, which is a great sign. Also, my front runner Skyfall song "Skyfall" got nominated.
CON: Every song sounds like mopey white people. For future reference, please consider John Legend's "Who Did That to You" by John Legend from Django Unchained. It is far more powerful than what we have here. It deserves a nomination so badly.
SHOULD WIN: "Skyfall" from Skyfall
WILL WIN: "Skyfall" from Skyfall
There you have it. Another year, another group of unremarkable nominees. I feel like Beasts of the Southern Wild's days of glory are kind of fading. The Comedy and Musical category continues to remain a joke and Lincoln will unfairly control most of the buzz, even though it is the least interesting nominee among these. It is a bigger joke that Salmon Fishing in the Yemen got that many nominations, and while there are some notable exclusions, the Dramatic category is pretty solid. Not an exceptional year, but one that shows why the Golden Globes aren't exactly on the ball with this stuff. Not nominating Paranorman? Get out of here.