WORDS ON FILM
BY NOLAN LAMPSON
The 73rd Golden Globe Awards are at 8pm EST (5pm for the decidedly cooler side of the nation), January 10, 2016, on NBC.
There are certain award ceremonies preceding the Academy Awards in February that will ultimately shape and alter predictions for every category. The films released each year in the October-January juggernaut of cinematic stunners always tie in to the awards race in many different ways, and the most accurate way to infer the winners of those coveted golden statues is to peer into the other ceremonies, searching for the films that are "in" and "out" of Hollywood's brain. One of these ceremonies is most definitely the Golden Globes, which, when they are broadcasted to roughly 21 million people (per last year's numbers), will almost certainly be the source of cinephile's safest picks. My picks last year, although certainly argued over, proved to be nearly 85% correct. Given that I've seen twice as many films in the race as last year, I feel confident that this year will go even smoother. Yet, of course, there are categories including multiple possibilities for winners, and the Foreign Press isn't as easy to discern and analyze as the Academy, therefore it should be noted that surprises are prone to occur, as they do each year. Now that the disclaimer is disclaimed, or something, here are my picks, from most important to least, at least according to the Golden Globes website, along with my supplementary thoughts for about half of the categories:
**PREDICTIONS ARE BOLDED**
BEST PICTURE - DRAMA
-Mad Max: Fury Road
Yes, Carol and The Revenant are certainly the most deserving here, as both are cinematic spectacles that reached the apex of what we thought was possible in 2015 (after quite a rocky start), but there is one clear winner for every ceremony taking place until next fall, and the name of that winner is Tom McCarthy, and his film Spotlight, starring Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, and some very, very evil priests. Carol is not completely out of the race, as it would seem due to its NYFCC performance, but it is McCarthy coming off last year's The Cobbler, starring everyone's favorite cash-thief Adam Sandler, who will take this home for Spotlight, even if the spotlight should be on Carol.
BEST PICTURE - MUSICAL/COMEDY
-The Big Short
Ah, yes. The Golden Globes' other Best Picture category, the annual five films that range from Anchorman 2 to Birdman, from ridiculously obscene movies to films that are not merely comedies, but are still honored in a wrong category, to make up the fact that only five of the thousand dramatic prestige-pictures are in the "important" Best Picture category of the two in the Golden Globes. This is probably the category I am most unsure about. Those who are going to pick The Big Short are in good enough company, as the film has a good chance of winning, and will certainly make a more-than-subtle appearance at the Academy Awards, but I really feel it is Ridley Scott's advertised-to-death The Martian that will win. YET, The Martian is going home with a few other awards, likely, and that reason alone is my reason for picking The Big Short, though for this one, I really am unsure and don’t have a strong hunch.
BEST LEADING ACTRESS - DRAMA
Cate Blanchett, Carol
Brie Larson, Room
Rooney Mara, Carol
Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn
Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl
Having not seen Room, I unfortunately cannot profess here and now that Brie Larson deserves the award she is likely to receive. Although both actresses in Carol, particularly Blanchett, were fantastic, as was Saoirse Ronan (I refuse to see the likely Oscar-bait bull---- that is The Danish Girl), Larson’s buzz for this film and her so-called relentless performance are gaining just enough traction to win this one with nearly no hesitation.
BEST LEADING ACTOR - DRAMA
Bryan Cranston, Trumbo
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant
Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs
Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl
Will Smith, Concussion
It’s DiCaprio’s year, as many have been saying, and it is not only finally coming this year, but for a truly deserving performance. The only contender in my mind is Michael Fassbender, and if Redmayne wins (he won’t), I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger. The horse liver-eater DiCaprio climbed inside of a horse carcass for this movie, but it is not the wild method acting that will get him the win; the unsettling poignancy and sense of loss from his character are sure to hit the HFPA deep in the feels. This is Leo’s time, surely. We should be thankful.
BEST LEADING ACTRESS - MUSICAL/COMEDY
Jennifer Lawrence, Joy
Melissa McCarthy, Spy
Amy Schumer, Trainwreck
Maggie Smith, The Lady in the Van
Lily Tomlin, Grandma
How does Amy Schumer beat Jennifer Lawrence? Answer: Trainwreck, the most-revered ACTUAL comedy of 2015, wherein Amy Schumer won over critics and audiences with her performance, as well as singularly wrote the film. Taking a raunchy comedian over an Oscar-winner is definitely unusual, but then again, the Foreign Press has fun. Schumer will take this away from Lawrence in a standoff, for sure, but it is likely that this year, what is seemingly the obvious choice in Lawrence will fall to Schumer’s hilarity and charm.
BEST LEADING ACTOR - MUSICAL/COMEDY
Christian Bale, The Big Short
Steve Carell, The Big Short
Matt Damon, The Martian
Al Pacino, Danny Collins
Mark Ruffalo, Infinitely Polar Bear (a movie about a bipolar man, which you probably haven’t heard of, that stole my clever band name Bipolar Bear)
The heap of disappointment that was The Big Short at least had two aspects I loved: Christian Bale and Steve Carell as polar-opposite, socially inept men with a knack for numbers. Yet it is Matt Damon as lovable, humorous, and also-good-with-numbers Mark Watney in Ridley Scott’s The Martian that will be checked in most ballots this year. There’s nothing like a feel-good and intense space “opera” with Matt Damon, who could’ve turned this movie into The Revenant in space, but decided on being nice and tolerable with the people who unintentionally made him grow food and plants from his feces (or something, who knows). Winner: Damon. Loser: My clever band name.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Jane Fonda, Youth
Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight
Helen Mirren, Trumbo
Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina
Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs
This is more of a “want” than a surefire prediction, though Vikander is likely to win anyway for her stunning performance, both emotionally and physically, as Ava, the artificial yet intelligent AI that won over the hearts of many (and then SPOILERS SPOILERS ripped the hearts to pieces). I think only Fonda has a chance of upsetting Vikander, and though I personally felt she was good in her role, Vikander is taking this one back to...wherever she’s from. Denmark? Sweden? Yeah, yeah, Sweden. That’s it.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Paul Dano, Love and Mercy
Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation
Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies
Michael Shannon, 99 Homes
Sylvester Stallone, Creed
Sorry Netflix, and your truly eye-rolling attempt to put Beasts of No Nation EVERYWHERE, but this one is going to Rocky himself, screenwriter and philanthropist (hopefully) Stallone. Stalltwo and Stallthree were quite snubbed, I’d say.
Todd Haynes, Carol
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, The Revenant
Tom McCarthy, Spotlight
George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road
Ridley Scott, The Martian
I actually may be a bit angry if McCarthy wins. Not that I really want anyone else to win (Haynes/Inarritu would be nice, though), and not that Spotlight isn’t good, but simply put, it’s the best film this year with distinctly no direction. It is completely dependent on the acting and the material. McCarthy didn’t do anything outstanding from my view, but that being said, it’s a three-way race between McCarthy, Scott, and Miller, though ironically my two favorites are SURELY the other two. The winner, I feel, is the multi-nominated but yet-to-win Ridley Scott, who is not going anywhere for the Academy Awards, but these are different circumstances.
Emma Donoghue, Room
Tom McCarthy, Josh Singer, Spotlight
Adam McKay, Charles Randolph, The Big Short
Aaron Sorkin, Steve Jobs
Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight
I’d personally choose Sorkin and QT by a mile, but both are likely to fall to McCarthy/Singer’s screenplay for Spotlight, which you have to admit was good, but you don’t have to admit it should win (I certainly won’t). Nevertheless, Spotlight is Spotlight.
BEST ANIMATED FILM - Anomalisa, The Good Dinosaur, Inside Out, The Peanuts Movie, Shaun the Sheep Movie
BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM - The Brand New Testament, The Club, The Fencer, Mustang, Son of Saul
BEST ORIGINAL SCORE - Carter Burwell (Carol), Alexandre Desplat (The Danish Girl), Ennio Morricone (The Hateful Eight), Daniel Pemberton (Steve Jobs), Ryuichi Sakamoto, Alva Noto (The Revenant)
BEST ORIGINAL SONG - ‘Love Me Like You Do’ (Fifty Shades of Grey), ‘One Kind of Love’ (Love and Mercy), ‘See You Again’ (Furious 7), ‘Simple Song #3’ (Youth), ‘Writing’s on the Wall (Spectre)
Thank you very much for viewing my predictions this year, and as expected, these will not all be correct (barring some miracle). I will have my favorite films of 2015 up soon (expect in two or so weeks), and then back to regular, weekly reviews, due to my absences recently. And, of course, come around next month for Oscarmania, where I will be waiting to share my picks with you.
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