Tuesday, January 17, 2012

2011 Golden Globe Winners

I apologize that this is coming two days late; now that the spring semester has started its going to be back to sporadic posting again. And even more unfortunate is that I didn't even watch the Globes this year. Instead, I relied on live-blogs to keep up with the winners. But no fear, I've got the complete list of winners here, with commentary on their wins and what that means for the Oscar race, as usual.

Don't worry, I swear live-blogging the Oscars will still happen. Nothing will take Hollywood's Biggest Night away from me.

BEST PICTURE, DRAMA
The Descendants




This is a case of good news, bad news. The good news first: The Descendants earned this one (review coming soon), and it is no real surprise that it won. The bad news: Oscar has not been kind to the winner of this category, with only three of the last 10 winners going on to take home the Best Picture Oscar. So it may be other perceived frontrunners Hugo and War Horse that are the real winners here. And poor The Ides of March, getting four Globe nominations but leaving empty-handed.

BEST ACTRESS IN A DRAMA
Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady


Another very deserving winner. Like the Oscars, Streep is one of the Globes' favorites, this marking her eighth trophy out of 26 nominations. The Best Actress race is shaping up to be Streep vs. Viola Davis (The Help), so it should be interesting to see if this will be the year Streep wins her third Oscar. This certainly is a strong case for her.

BEST ACTOR IN A DRAMA
George Clooney, The Descendants


Now we know that not only is Clooney a real charmer, he also knows a great dick joke (at fellow nominee Michael Fassbender's expense). However, winning the Globe does not make Clooney the frontrunner; I would say that Brad Pitt (Moneyball), Jean Dujardin (see below), and even Fassbender are still in this. However, this doesn't help Ryan Gosling's (The Ides of March) chances.

BEST PICTURE, COMEDY/MUSICAL
The Artist




Because of course. The Artist is still considered the frontrunner for Best Picture, and this certainly didn't hurt its chances. Unfortunately, Bridesmaids probably needed the win here to be taken seriously as an Oscar contender.

BEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY/MUSICAL
Michelle Williams, My Week with Marilyn


Williams was kind of a sure-thing here too, but its nice to see her win. I still think it would be foolish to count her out of the Oscar race; she's pretty much assured a nomination, but if the Academy is feeling frisky, they might overlook the film's lightness and do some Marilyn worshiping of their own by giving her the win. However, its a shame Kristen Wiig and Charlize Theron were passed over for their superior performances.

BEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY/MUSICAL
Jean Dujardin, The Artist


This one was essentially in the bag from the get-go. The Cannes Best Actor winner was the only one in the category with ecstatic reviews and any real Oscar heat, and its no real surprise that the charming Frenchman (apparently known as "the George Clooney of France") won.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Octavia Spencer, The Help


Spencer has long been in the race, but she's making her way into frontrunner status now. However, this doesn't clean up who's going to nominated, which is still a race of seven women jockeying for five spots. But its great to see Spencer winning.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Christopher Plummer, Beginners


If you haven't seen Beginners yet, do so now (#7 on the top 10 list). This race seems to have been between Plummer and Albert Brooks (Drive) all year; both will be nominated, but it seems that Plummer might have the momentum now.

BEST DIRECTOR
Martin Scorsese, Hugo


Scorsese has received his fair share of notices for this film, but I'm a bit surprised that the Globes didn't go with Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist), who's considered a real contender for the Oscar. Could this be one of those rare years when Best Director and Best Picture go to different films?

BEST SCREENPLAY
Woody Allen, Midnight in Paris


This is something of surprise too, since Moneyball and The Descendants have dominated the screenplay discussion so far. However, those two are adapted works, and thus won't be in competition with Midnight, which is original, at the Oscars. The Ides of March probably needed a win here to get back into this race as well.

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE
The Adventures of Tintin


Rango has thus far dominated the animation prizes. Tintin still has to overcome the hurdle of being a motion-capture film, but this win should go a long way towards making the Academy take it seriously.

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
A Separation (Iran)


A Separation has been doing remarkably well so far, and is probably still the Oscar frontrunner in this category. But unlike the Oscars, the Globe goes to the director and producers of the film, not to its country of origin. A while back my friend Glenn at Stale Popcorn wrote this terrific piece about whether the film should win the Oscar regardless of quality, and more on the basis of human rights violations in Iran. Check it out.

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE
Ludovic Bource, The Artist


Even though the use of Bernard Herrman's Vertigo score in this film reportedly raped Kim Novak, it was still deemed original enough and good enough to be Golden Globe worthy. I'm sort of shocked they didn't go with John Williams' sweeping War Horse score, though. Is Bource becoming the one to beat?

BEST ORIGINAL SONG
"Masterpiece," W.E. (music and lyrics by Madonna, Julie Frost, and Jimmy Harry)


So the movie didn't pan out well (namely, it was widely panned). However, Madonna still got to start what should be a big year for her with a Globe win, soon to be followed by her Super Bowl halftime show and a brand-new album. I can't recall if this showed up on the Academy shortlist, but even if it did, the Oscars have such ridiculously strange tastes that the win here is no guarantee for a nomination (as a side note: I'm with a number of people who think we should just do away with this category altogether, since it doesn't actually have much to do with the craft of filmmaking and so few movies actually rely on original songs anymore. I could understand if original movie musicals were still popular, but alas, it seems that will never be again. Allow me to stare wistfully out the window while I hum a few bars of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow...").

And now for the television winners.

BEST DRAMA SERIES
Homeland


The Golden Globes tend to like shiny new things when it comes to TV (see that American Horror Story nomination), and so I'm not completely surprised they went with Homeland here. The show's ecstatic reviews means this will probably show up in this year's Emmy nominations, and maybe even pose a threat to break the Mad Men Monopoly on the category (because Mad Men will be eligible this year; April 1 premiere date!).

BEST ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES
Claire Danes, Homeland


I suspect she's going to repeat at this year's Emmys. I mean, who else has the kind of love that she got for going all crazy-lady on us?

BEST ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES
Kelsey Grammer, Boss


Ok, so the Globes are notorious starfuckers, which might be why Grammer won this category over Steve Buscemi (Boardwalk Empire), Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad), and Damien Lewis (Homeland). But I've heard good things about him on this show, and given how low ratings were in its first season, it could use this kind of awards attention to keep it afloat.

BEST COMEDY/MUSICAL SERIES
Modern Family


They had a chance to do something really special and show some love for the underrated Enlightened, and I'm still pissed that they didn't nominate Parks & Recreation here. But Modern Family has been dependably solid (though still problematic), and hey, its not Glee or New Girl. (Note: I should say that I don't hate New Girl. Its turned in some solid episodes, and I usually get at least one good laugh out of each episode. But its done very little to develop Jess as an interesting character rather than a collection of Zooey Deschanel quirks, and the storytelling is often sketchy at best. It hasn't really figured out what kind of show it wants to be yet, and it seems to have settled into a groove of half-baked ideas that's squandering the promise that's definitely there. So what I'm saying is that its not bad, and it could get better, but its definitely not award-worthy.)

BEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY/MUSICAL SERIES
Laura Dern, Enlightened


There was no way that I wouldn't be pleased with any of the nominated ladies winning (well, maybe Deschanel), but I love me some Laura Dern, and I can't wait to get my hands on the first season of Enlightened. Will the Emmys follow suit and recognize her?

BEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY/MUSICAL SERIES
Matt Leblanc, Episodes


Well, I can't say I saw that one coming. Sure, he was surprisingly Emmy nominated too, but...starfucking, except is LeBlanc really a star? I saw the first two episodes of Episodes (hah!) on the Dexter Season 5 DVD set (shhh...I do still like that show, and I'm not ashamed to say it), and I wasn't really impressed by LeBlanc, but he was barely present too, so maybe I just need to see more?

BEST MINISERIES/TV MOVIE
Downton Abbey


As if anything else would win.

BEST ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES/TV MOVIE
Kate Winslet, Mildred Pierce


Another obvious choice. That's another Golden Globe for Winslet's mantle (she has three now).

BEST ACTOR IN A MINISERIES/TV MOVIE
Idris Elba, Luther


Luther's on Netflix, and I've been meaning to catch up, because I love some Idris Elba too. Good for him for getting the Globe recognition.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN TELEVISION
Jessica Lange, American Horror Story


I still haven't figured out if I actually like AHS yet or if I'm just impressed by how balls-to-the-wall insane it is, but Lange was routinely the best aspect of the show as conniving neighbor Constance. I would be surprised if she doesn't pick up an Emmy for this too.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN TELEVISION
Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones


When is this coming to DVD? Ever since it premiered on HBO (I can't afford pay cable, unfortunately), I've been meaning to check this show out. But I'm glad that the uber-talented Dinklage is finally getting major awards recognition. How about some more terrific film roles a la The Station Agent?

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