Here Come the Globes!

It’s Golden Globes time again! It’s probably the most fun of the award shows in the season, since the stars can get all liquored up as they fend off zingers from host Ricky Gervais. It’s also fun to see how much stock we put in these, since they’re only voted upon by 80-odd members, who have no affiliation/overlap with The Academy. Anyways, the Globes matter because they offer face time on TV during the thick of award season, and a win looks great in an ad and often ensures great box office success and exposure for a winner. On that note, here is who I think the winners will and should be:

Shailene Woodley and George Clooney in Drama frontrunner The Descendants

Best Actor – Drama
The nominees: George Clooney, The Descendants; Leonardo DiCaprio, J. Edgar; Michael Fassbender, Shame; Ryan Gosling, The Ides of March; Brad Pitt, Moneyball.

It’s hard to argue with this list. Except for that Gary Oldman’s name does not appear on it. Who to cut then? I hate to say it, but I probably would bump Canada’s homeboy Ryan Gosling: he’s great in Ides, but better than Oldman? Hmm. Gosling’s performance in Drive is arguably his best performance of the year, too, and had he been nominated for that, he’d merit more consideration. I can’t really complain about Oldman’s absence, though, since my vote goes to Fassbender. While Fassbender should win, the odds seem against him, as three of his fellow nominees are also in Best Picture nominees. I think the race will come down to friends Clooney and Pitt, both of whom wholly deserve the award should they win. I’m going to guess Clooney nabs it, since he’s popular with the HFPA: he’s won twice before, and with four nominations this year, he’s sure to add a third to his collection.
Snubs: in addition to Oldman, Michael Shannon (Take Shelter) deserves a nom.

Since Uggie isn't nominated, this is an easy win for Jean Dujardin
Best Actor – Comedy
The nominees: Jean Dujardin, The Artist; Brendan Gleeson, The Guard; Joseph Gordon-Levitt, 50/50; Ryan Gosling, Crazy, Stupid, Love.; Owen Wilson, Midnight in Paris.

Well, this one’s a no brainer. The star of The Artist, Jean Dujardin, has this one all wrapped up. He’s fantastic in the film, and voters will surely swoon for the nostalgia factor in his well-researched and well-crafted turn as a silent film star. I’d be very happy if Owen Wilson pulled a surprise win – he’s the only person who plays the “Woody Allen” character better than Woody Allen – but a win for Dujardin is one of the safest bets of the night.
Snubs: Christoph Waltz, Carnage; Paul Giamatti, Win Win.

Fingers crossed that Streep nabs her 8th Globe
Best Actress – Drama
The nominees: Glenn Close, Albert Nobbs; Viola Davis, The Help; Rooney Mara, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo; Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady; Tilda Swinton, We Need to Talk About Kevin.

I think this might be the toughest call of the night. This is an excellent batch of nominees and I wouldn’t object to a win for any of them. Glenn Close could manage a win for her ‘passion project’ Albert Nobbs, but I think this comes down to a face-off between Doubt co-stars Meryl Streep and Viola Davis. Streep has my vote for her astonishingly spot-on performance as Thatcher, and it’s hard to imagine this impressive perf not winning checkmarks from the elderly voters of the HFPA. Not to mention the fact that Streep has deservedly won four Golden Globes in the past nine years (for Adaptation., Angels in America, The Devil Wears Prada, and Julie & Julia). But. But, but, but, but, but. Is there any performance that has had the same staying power or has generated as much discussion as Viola Davis’s turn as Aibileen in The Help? Heads, Streep; tails, Davis.
Snubs: Rachel Weisz, The Whistleblower

Williams is worthy of Best Actress... but in a Comedy? Pfft.
Best Actress – Comedy
The nominees: Jodie Foster, Carnage; Charlize Theron, Young Adult; Kristen Wiig, Bridesmaids; Michelle Williams, My Week with Marilyn; Kate Winslet, Carnage.

Let me start by saying that I refuse to accept the inclusion of Michelle Williams in this category. She’ll win by a landslide, but she shouldn’t. I stand by my early review that she gives an excellent performance as Marilyn Monroe, but My Week with Marilyn simply is not a comedy. If it is, and if Williams’ attempt was to make us laugh at Monroe’s pain, then she and the film both failed badly. This is simply a case where The Weinstein Company didn’t want their two Best Actress hopefuls competing head-to-head (Meryl Streep is the other), and therefore committed blatant fraud and submitted Williams in the presumably weaker category. A win for Williams trivializes the other nominees, too, for the four other actresses give great performances that are genuinely comedic and intentionally funny. Kate Winslet was fierce in Carnage, but her inevitable win for Mildred Pierce in the TV category probably kills her chances. (She’s also competing against co-star Jodie Foster.) Kristen Wiig is possibly the dark horse for her zany turn in Bridesmaids, but my vote goes to CharlizeYoung Adult. Her work is black comedy at its best.
Snubs: Kim Cattrall, Meet Monica Velour

Plummer should win for Beginners, but he has stiff competition from Brooks
Best Supporting Actor
The nominees: Kenneth Branagh, My Week with Marilyn; Albert Brooks, Drive; Jonah Hill, Moneyball; Viggo Mortensen, A Dangerous Method; Christopher Plummer, Beginners.

Another of the night’s close races, this one will probably come down to Brooks and Plummer. Both have virtually split the critics prizes handed out so far. Neither of their films received Best Picture nominations, although I doubt that Branagh and Hill are likely to win despite the stronger showing for their films. I’m hoping that my personal pick, Plummer, benefits from the early release of his film and edges out Brooks.
Snubs: Corey Stoll, Midnight in Paris, Uggie, The Artist

Who will win - Chastain or Spencer?
Best Supporting Actress
The nominees: Berenice Bejo, The Artist; Jessica Chastain, The Help; Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs; Octavia Spencer, The Help; Shailene Woodley, The Descendants.

This is the only race of the night that I honestly feel could go any way. All five nominees are worthy and have strong support. I much admire Bejo’s work in The Artist, although I think she should have been placed in the lead category instead. (Another example of category fraud from the distributor of My Week with Marilyn.) Both Bejo and Woodley, however, could benefit from the strong support for their films. Janet McTeer is the wild card, as most voters could find that they watched Albert Nobbs for Glenn Close, but walked out talking about McTeer’s ballsy bit of scene-stealing. I think this is really a toss-up between the two co-stars from The Help. With five nominations, The Help has to win something and this is where it stands the best chance, unless Chastain and Spencer cancel each other out. I think Chastain could rightly benefit from having the stronger body of work this year, but I’ll say that Minny’s pie is exactly the kind of treat the voters like.
Snub: Carey Mulligan, Shame.

Best Picture – Musical/Comedy
The nominees: The Artist, Bridesmaids, 50/50, Midnight in Paris, My Week with Marilyn.
The Artist is a shoo-in for this award. I don’t know how well it qualifies as a comedy, but it benefits from the fact that My Week with Marilyn commits far more egregious fraud. I have read a few arguments that Marilyn could be considered a musical, but that’s like saying the same for Martha, Marcy, May, Marlene because John Hawkes sings “Marcy’s Song.” An isolated performance or two does not make a musical. Nevertheless, I’m rooting hard for Woody Allen and Midnight in Paris. It could win, since Woody won for Vicky, Cristina, Barcelona a few years ago. Then again, that random win for The Hangover means we shouldn’t count out Bridesmaids, which is better, funnier, and crasser than the antics of the Wolfpack. It’s all wishful thinking, though… awards groups just can’t resist The Artist.
Snubs: Beginners

The Descendants deserves Best Picture

Best Picture – Drama
The nominees: The Descendants, The Help, Hugo, The Ides of March, Moneyball, War Horse.

If any group is going to give an award to sentimental crap like War Horse, it’s the Hollywood Foreign Press. I think they’re a smart enough group to know a dud when they see it though, and a loss for War Horse will finally be the nail in the coffin for the Horse’s pitiful lap around the awards circuit. I think Hugo could sneak in, although The Descendants will probably add another Best Picture Globe for Alexander Payne, making a nice pair with his one from Sideways. I wouldn’t count The Help out, since it’s a great, accessible film that could play well with this crowd, especially since they often favour mainstream films; moreover, the cast has been working the press pretty hard this season. It’s genuinely an exciting race, and any of these films would benefit with a win when it comes time to place some ads and go up against The Artist.
Snubs: Shame and We Need to Talk About Kevin, but I would never have expected to see those nominated here. 

Full predictions: 
Will win
If I picked the winner

Best Picture: Drama
The Descendants
The Help
The Ides of March
War Horse

Best Picture: Comedy/Musical
The Artist
Midnight in Paris
My Week with Marilyn

Best Director
Woody Allen, Midnight In Paris
George Clooney, The Ides of March
Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
Alexander Payne, The Descendants
Martin Scorsese, Hugo

Best Actress, Drama
Glenn Close, Albert Nobbs
Viola Davis, The Help
Rooney Mara, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady
Tilda Swinton, We Need to Talk About Kevin

Best Actor, Drama
George Clooney, The Descendants
Leonardo DiCaprio, J. Edgar
Michael Fassbender, Shame
Ryan Gosling, The Ides of March
Brad Pitt, Moneyball

Best Actress Comedy or Musical
Jodie Foster, Carnage
Charlize Theron, Young Adult
Kristen Wiig, Bridesmaids
Michelle Williams, My Week With Marilyn
Kate Winslet, Carnage

Best Actor Comedy or Musical
Jean Dujardin, The Artist
Brendan Gleeson, The Guard
Joseph Gordon Levitt, 50/50
Ryan Gosling, Crazy, Stupid, Love.
Owen Wilson, Midnight in Paris

Best Supporting Actor

Kenneth Branagh, My Week with Marilyn
Albert Brooks, Drive
Jonah Hill, Moneyball
Viggo Mortensen, A Dangerous Method
Christopher Plummer, Beginners

Best Supporting Actress
Berenice Bejo, The Artist
Jessica Chastain , The Help
Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs
Octavia Spencer, The Help
Shailene Woodley, The Descendants
Best Foreign Language Film

A Separation (Iran)
The Flowers Of War (China)
The Kid With The Bike (Belgium)
In The Land Of Blood and Honey (USA)
The Skin I Live in (Spain)

Best Animated Feature

Arthur Christmas
Cars 2
Puss in Boots

Best Screenplay
Midnight in Paris, Woody Allen
The Ides of March, George Clooney, Grant Heslov, Beau Willimon
The Artist, Michel Hazanavicius
The Descendants, Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon and Jim Rash
Moneyball, Steven Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin

Best Score
The Artist, Ludovic Bource
W.E., Abel Korzeniowski
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross
Hugo, Howard Shore
War Horse, John Williams

Best Original Song
“Hello Hello” – “Gnomeo & Juliet – Elton John
“Lay Your Head Down” – “Albert Nobbs” – Sinead O’Connor
“The Living Proof” – “The Help” – Mary J. Blige
“The Keeper” – “Machine Gun Preacher” – Chris Cornell
“Masterpiece” – “W.E.” – Madonna

Any predictions you have? Or someone you're rooting for? 
Did My Week with Marilyn crack you up?