Upcoming Golden Globes shows very questionable taste
If the Academy Awards is the mother of all film award shows, the Golden Globes is the rebellious daughter.
The awards show, airing this Sunday on NBC at 5 p.m. PT, has gained the reputation of being the âfun showâ of award season.
Itâs the first major award show of the year and also the one where they serve alcohol. Itâs just more fun to watch acceptance speeches from actors whoâve had a few drinks.
But with its lack of pretense comes a lack of prestige, and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the small voting body of the Globes, is not known for its sophisticated or discerning taste.
I know The Hangover was funny, but the best comedy of the year? Nominating Tom Cruise for Tropic Thunder? Really? In looking at only a couple of categories for this yearâs Golden Globes, itâs obvious the HFPAâs talent for choosing nominees has only grown worse.
Best Picture Comedy or Musical
The list of nominees for Best Comedy or Musical is, frankly, a joke. At least Red and Alice in Wonderland were fun to watch and had incredibly talented ensemble casts (though by no means was the full potential of either cast utilized, and neither achieved much narrative coherence).
But The Tourist? I didnât think anybody even liked The Tourist, nor is it a musical or a comedy.
And nominating both Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie for their performances is quite a stretch, considering they were generally lambasted by critics for their lack of chemistry.
Even worse is nominating Depp twice in the same category. Thatâs just a lack of creativity.
Burlesque, however, is the crowning what-were-they-thinking nomination of the evening. Its musical status is the only fathomable reason, albeit a bad one, that the critically trashed Cher/Christina vehicle could have been nominated.
Burlesque actually has three nominations, though the other two are, more understandably, in the Best Original Song category.
The musical is also being considered for five Razzies, the awards honoring the yearâs worst films.
Itâs a little sad to think the Razziesâ voting body, which consists of anybody who wants to join, might have better taste than the HFP.
The HFPAâs one chance to validate the otherwise appalling Best Comedy/Musical category is their nomination of The Kids Are All Right.
The film is the only nomination in the Musical or Comedy category worthy of discussion. Itâs in another class entirely from the other nominees and likely to receive a well-deserved Best Picture Oscar nod as well.
If Kids doesnât win on Sunday, the Globes will quash the last ounce of credibility they have. There may not have been many stand-out comedies this year Â â aside from Toy Story 3, which is sadly relegated to the Animated Film category â but the disappointing list of nominees definitely makes you question the Globesâ tradition of splitting up the Comedy/Musical and Drama categories.
Itâs true that comedies deserve far more recognition during awards season â and The Kids Are All Right having the chance to win Best Picture surely shows the benefit of dividing the categories â but itâs not worth it if it means nominating films that donât stand up against the dramas in terms of quality. Maybe the HFPA just needs higher standards.
Best Picture Drama, Director, and Screenplay
In spite of the largely embarrassing Best Comedy/Musical category, the Best Drama, Director and Screenplay nominees are all the predictable award season favorites.
The Social Network, The Fighter, Black Swan, Inception and The Kingâs Speech get the most love, but there are a few notable absences.
Surprisingly, True Grit is conspicuously missing from the nominee list altogether, despite a critical consensus that it will be a major Oscar player. 127 Hours is rightfully up for Best Actor and Screenplay, yet missing from the Director and Picture categories.
But such snubs will most likely prove irrelevant when The Social Network sweeps the major categories. Black Swan might offer the strongest competition, but Darren Aronofsky is unlikely to take Best Director from David Fincher, and Aaron Sorkin surely has a lock on Best Screenplay.
With such a variety of nominees ranging from the brilliant to the just plain bad, letâs just hope the Hollywood Foreign Press can at least get something right on Sunday.
Cara Dickason is a senior double majoring in cinema critical studies and english. Her column, âCine File,â runs Tuesdays.