Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Welcome to Awards Season

I haven't written any Oscar posts yet this year, so what better time than the announcement of the Golden Globe nominations this morning. For those of you who haven't seen them yet, you can find the nominations here.


On the drama side, very happy to see the strong showings for The Hurt Locker and Up in the Air, as completely expected as both may be, with Hurt Locker taking nods in best drama, screenplay, and director, and Up in the Air in drama, actor, screenplay, director, and double dipping in supporting actress (I certainly couldn't pick between them). Also happy to see the strong showing for Avatar, which I haven't yet seen but am more excited for than ever after all the good buzz. But Tobey Maguire in the poorly received Brothers over Jeremy Renner's breakthrough performance in The Hurt Locker? Seriously?

Over on comedy, very excited for the multiple nods to 500 Days of Summer, The Hangover for best comedy, and Matt Damon in The Informant. But it's in this category the HFPA are really showing themselves for the fame whores they are. Double nods for Meryl Streep, even though It's Complicated is currently at 38% on Rotten Tomatoes? And giving it a screenplay nod over such likely better movies as An Education, 500 Days of Summer, and (according to critics) A Serious Man? Also double nods for Sandra Bullock, and a nomination for Julia Roberts essentially just for being Julia Roberts. Still, the Robert Downey Jr. nomination makes me hope Sherlock Holmes lives up to expectations.

Lastly, expect the animation entries to all repeat at the Oscars (and you know it's been a good year for animation when I've already seen 4 out of 5 of the nominees), though it better be Up that takes it (as much as I like Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Princess and the Frog, and Coraline). Golden Globes usually have more foreign nominees I've heard of than the Oscars, as they don't have the same stupid restrictions, but all that really meant was Broken Embraces gets added on. Since A Prophet and The White Ribbon won't be out in the US until next year, this seems to be yet another off year for foreign films. What happened to the days of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and Life Is Beautiful, when people had actually seen some of the movies by Oscar time?


SO happy to see Glee and Modern Family getting nominations in best comedy. That race has gotten so tired with the same shows up there every single year, so it's expected but still satisfying to see the two great new shows being added to the list. But for an awards show so quick to reward the new and fresh (um...Hung?) over the older, established shows (hence Lost's perpetual absence), how is three-years-past-its-prime Entourage still on there? Replace that with How I Met Your Mother and you've got a great category.

Elsewhere in comedy, yay again to Glee for getting acting nods for Matthew Morrison, Lea Michele, and most deserving of all, Jane Lynch. Shame that nobody from Modern Family was recognized, but they'll likely fall into Arrested Development syndrome where the cast is so strong as an ensemble that voters will never be able to choose just one of them, especially with no real lead characters. And since the Globes combine comedy with drama, it's all the harder. But still glad NPH managed to find a spot even if his show didn't.

On to drama, where I was happy to see lots of love for Dexter, Mad Men, and True Blood. I've only seen two episodes of Dexter so far, but it's enough to convince me John Lithgow will be tough to beat in supporting, though I'd of course be very happy to see NPH (or Michael Emerson, for that matter) take it. Yay to January Jones and Jon Hamm, but that still of course leaves out a lot of the super talented cast. And if Lost isn't on here cause it's too old, then how is equally old but more played-out House still racking up the nominees?

Overall, a few WTF moments (Tobey Maguire and It's Complicated chief among them), but very few compared to years past. On the movie side, they're justifying the consensus that Up in the Air, The Hurt Locker, and Precious are the three to beat this year, while giving support to the idea that Avatar may soon join their company. On TV, they again proved cooler than the Emmys by going after the new instead of the same old. Let's hope Glee and Modern Family continue that streak this summer. And you'll be seeing more Oscar posts from me soon enough.

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