I got a new computer yesterday, so it seems that I'll finally be able to find a way to put a few posts together. I've missed blogging, but it's always so difficult to find time to post at work, and my computer had passed decrepit and moved into what I can only really call the computer form of incontinence (when you most want it to stay with you, it just goes).
Fortunately, I'm now endowed with bright, shiny new technology, capable of doing important computer-y things. So far I've used it to look at YouTube and send email, and while you can argue I'm not really getting the most out of it, those were both functions beyond the capability of my old computer.
With the Golden Globes coming up this Sunday, I thought I'd make sure to finally put together a post and give you my predictions. The end of the year is the best time to do posts about films, and amidst all the retrospectives and awards-groveling, it's the time of year when we can finally look back on the year and say, "boy, not much really happened, huh?"
For example, looking at the films nominated for Best Picture at the Globes this year, I can make a legitimate case that any of those films could win. How often is that the case? Usually by now there's a clear frontrunner - No Country For Old Men last year, The Departed and Babel the year before, Brokeback Mountain the year before that. Of the five films nominated this year, none of them has even a small jump on the others. And here's the real trick: I don't think either of the two best films of the year were nominated. Take a look:
Best Picture (Drama): The nominees are Slumdog Millionaire, The Reader, Frost/Nixon, Revolutionary Road, and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Now, I think moviegoers would agree that The Dark Knight got absolutely robbed in this category, but I also think that the best film this year, bar none, was Milk. These five films are just the best-of-the-rest, though, and it's all guesswork, but I'm gonna go with Benjamin Button, with Millionaire as the wild card. Why? Just a wild hunch. That's all we get this year.
Best Actress (Drama): No big frontrunners this year, either, but logic dictates that things will work out like this (at least, my logic does): Kristen Scott Thomas did the best work this work, but it's all in French, and that weeds out voters fast (especially Globe voters, who, let's just be honest, are a pack of 40-watts). Angelina Jolie was solid but not remarkable, Meryl Streep's here by name rather than performance, and Kate Winslet's going to win Best Supporting Actress for The Reader, so she's out. So that leaves Anne Hathaway, who gets votes because she's finally put together a great performance after a career of middling work combined with flickers of occasional promise. I think she'll definitely take it here.
Best Actor (Drama): Five great nominees this year, there's really not a middling performance in this bunch. While all of these guys here are name actors, none of them are here by name recognition; particularly Mickey Rourke, who's back from the dead to win huge acclaim in this role. I'll rank them like this:
- Sean Penn, Milk
- Mickey Rourke, The Wrestler
- Frank Langella, Frost/Nixon
- Brad Pitt, Benjamin Button
- Leonardo DiCaprio, Revolutionary Road
Best Actress (Musical Or Comedy): Meryl Streep is again nominated by name alone, though proper credit should be given to her about being such a sport throughout Mamma Mia! and not, at any point, looking at the camera and saying "this is complete bullshit, isn't it?" I couldn't have managed. She won't win, and if all is right with the world, Sally Hawkins will for Happy-Go-Lucky. Don't count out Emma Thompson, though, since the Association can't be trusted on this front.
Best Actor (Musical Or Comedy): Colin Farrell is, bizarrely, nominated for an award here, along with his co-lead, Brendan Gleeson. Let's discount them both and instead select from the other three. I think Dustin Hoffman takes it here, except that James Franco is nominated here for Pineapple Express and not nominated for a truly stunning turn in Milk, which was gypped across the board in these nominations. Don't discount a sympathy vote.
Supporting Actress: There's two nominees from Doubt, so they'll cancel each other out, but I think the real battle here is between Marissa Tomei and Kate Winslet, who both show their acting chops by getting completely naked. I think that even though it's famously unwise to bet on the five-times Academy snubbed Winslet, I think she takes it here.
Supporting Actor: Heath Ledger. It's not up for discussion. We may one day just call this award "The Ledger."
Best Animated Film: Lessee here, did Pixar come out with a film this year? They did. Have they ever been defeated? They have not. Was the film in question probably the pinnacle of all computer-generated movies? Almost certainly. Is there any point in continuing this paragraph as a series of questions. There is not. Wall-E wins by a landslide.
Foreign Language Film: My gut tells me it's a run-off between I've Loved You So Long and Waltz With Bashir, and I haven't seen either (I actually have't seen any of the nominees). I'm gonna go with Bashir, and I can't say why. I bet that I'm right, though.
Best Director: What David Fincher does not know about directing, I do not wish to learn. Whether or not you thought Benjamin Button was genius or an overlong, wandering tale, there's no question that Fincher combined CGI with good - damn good - performances and gave a fairy tale a surprisingly gritty, realistic twist.
Best Screenplay: I think this has to be the one area that Slumdog Millionaire finally takes home a win. Inventive screenwriting is what wins this category, and Millionaire has that in spades. Once again though, don't discount Benjamin Button.
Best Score: I think that Alexandre Desplat's Benjamin Button score is too good here, but the random Defiance nomination for James Newton Howard's makes me wonder.
Best Original Song: Bruce Springsteen, "The Wrestler." Never, ever - ever - bet against the aging rocker.
Best Show (Drama): "Mad Men" continues it's sweep. No contest.
Best Actress (Drama): It should be January Jones, especially with her "Mad Men" resume, but the experienced name always carries this. It'll be Kyra Sedgewick again.
Best Actor (Drama): I gotta figure John Hamm gets this - he won last year, and there's no reason from the past season to think that he's any less deserving.
Best Show (Comedy): "30 Rock" will always be a critic's darling, and as long as it lasts, it will always win this award.
Best Actress (Comedy): Tina Fey should win again, though Christina Applegate came back from breast cancer this year, and that deserves something.
Best Actor (Comedy): I'd be happy with either Alec Baldwin or Steve Carrell, and I'm worried it might be Tony Shalhoub again (sigh), though I'm figuring instead it'll be a repeat of David Duchovny's win for his very nuanced "Californication" performance.
Best Mini-Series or Made For TV Movie: Hey, "John Adams" is nominated! I wonder who'll win?
Best Actress (Mini-Series): Hey, Laura Linney is nominated for "John Adams!" I wonder who'll win?
Best Actor (Mini-Series): Hey, Paul Giamatti is nominated for "John Adams!" I wonder who'll win?
Supporting Actress: I dunno on this one. Laura Dern was very, very good in Recount, so I'll go with that.
Supporting Actor: Jeremy Piven always wins this, and so he'll win again. I really wish Neil Patrick Harris would win one of these at some point, though.
I guess that about covers it. I'm hoping that my accuracy on this is superior to my Oscar accuracy, and so, with... 25 categories, I'm hoping to get 14. I can do this! We can build on this this!