BEST SCREENPLAY: Simon Beaufoy and Danny Boyle (127 Hours) – Christopher Nolan (Inception) – Stuart Blumberg and Lisa Cholodenko (The Kids are All Right) – David Seidler (The King’s Speech) – Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network)
The Globes split up the acting categories, but not the writing. Go figure. I want to say this is a two-horse race between Nolan’s Inception screenplay, which deserves the award on its nuts and bolts construction alone, and Sorkin’s Social Network for its rapid-fire energy. But you can’t count out anything that is attached to The King’s Speech now. Momentum is picking up for this picture furiously. But still, I think this is Sorkin’s category, and a good indicator of how the night might go for The Social Network.
SHOULD WIN – Sorkin WILL WIN – Sorkin
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Amy Adams (The Fighter) – Helena Bonham Carter (The King’s Speech) – Mila Kunis (Black Swan) – Melissa Leo (The Fighter) – Jacki Weaver (Animal Kingdom)
This is the most wide open of all the acting categories, and will probably be that way at the Oscars too. Typically, two performances from the same film will split the votes, which will probably be the case with Adams and Leo, although everything I hear is that Leo is a firecracker in The Fighter. I know nothing about Jacki Weaver’s performance or about Animal Kingdom, and I suspect that maybe a lot of voters are the same way. Kunis is a solid choice, but I think voters will aim their admiration for Black Swan at Natalie Portman, leaving Carter as the default choice.
SHOULD WIN – Leo WILL WIN – Carter
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR: Christian Bale (The Fighter) – Michael Douglas (Wall Street 2) – Andrew Garfield (The Social Network) – Jeremy Renner (The Town) – Geoffrey Rush (The King’s Speech)
This entire category, with the exception of Douglas, deserves to win this award. However, this is shaping up to be Christian Bale’s year on the awards circuit, and I think he gets going here with a landslide win.
SHOULD WIN – Bale WILL WIN – Bale
BEST ACTRESS – COMEDY OR MUSICAL: Annette Bening (The Kids Are All Right) – Anne Hathaway (Love and Other Drugs) – Angelina Jolie (The Tourist) – Julianne Moore (The Kids Are All Right) – Emma Stone (Easy A)
This is where the categories begin to split, and where some strange nominations begin to show up. Aside from the two nominations for the performances in The Kids Are All Right, I don’t think any of these nominees deserve their nomination. Did the voters even see The Tourist? I haven’t, but I have scanned a few reviews. Either way, I have a feeling that –splits or no – Bening will walk away with this award. I have a feeling this might be her year too, even though I think Moore’s performance was the better of the two.
SHOULD WIN – Moore WILL WIN – Bening
BEST ACTRESS – DRAMA: Halle Berry (Frankie and Alice) – Nicole Kidman (Rabbit Hole) – Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone) – Natalie Portman (Black Swan) – Michelle Williams (Blue Valentine)
This is a solid category for the first time in several years. The actress category has been, in recent years, a little thin because of the scarceness of meaty female lead roles. Outside of Berry, whose movie looks absurd, I would be satisfied with anyone winning. But I think this award is already Portman’s for a few reasons: her film is going to be the most popular and widely recognized film of the group, and more importantly she deserves the award for her stunning performance.
SHOULD WIN – Portman WILL WIN – Portman
BEST ACTOR – COMEDY OR MUSICAL: Johnny Depp (Alice in Wonderland) – Johnny Depp (The Tourist) – Paul Giamatti (Barney’s Version) – Jake Gyllenhaal (Love and Other Drugs) – Kevin Spacey (Casino Jack)
Thankfully, Depp will cancel himself out for his two mediocre performances. I don’t see Gyllenhaal winning this award because of the movie’s lukewarm reception, and I think maybe a dozen people have seen Giamatti in Barney’s Version, if that. That leaves Kevin Spacey playing Jack Abramoff. Although this is a small film, Hollywood loves political performances, and Spacey has generated a small deal of buzz for his turn as the infamous lobbyist. I think he wins by default here.
SHOULD WIN – Spacey WILL WIN – Spacey
BEST ACTOR – DRAMA: Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network) – Colin Firth (The King’s Speech) – James Franco (127 Hours) – Ryan Gosling (Blue Valentine) – Mark Wahlberg (The Fighter)
This is another category that boils down to window dressing. While everyone here is excellent in their performances, Firth is the lead candidate to win, and he will win.
SHOULD WIN – Firth WILL WIN – Firth
BEST DIRECTOR: Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan) – David Fincher (The Social Network) – Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech) – Christopher Nolan (Inception) – David O. Russell (The Fighter)
I could see anyone in this category except Russell winning. Nolan may be the next farthest away logically, mostly because of the three frontrunners ahead of him. I think The King’s Speech will get the acting awards and perhaps best picture, but I don’t see relative newcomer Hooper winning. That leaves Fincher and Aronofsky, and a real toss up. I think Aronofsky might deserve the award in a slight edge over Fincher, but Fincher may benefit from a more widely popular film that has a better shot at best picture.
SHOULD WIN – Aronofsky WILL WIN – Fincher
BEST PICTURE – COMEDY OR MUSICAL: Alice in Wonderland, Burlesque, The Kids Are All Right, Red, The Tourist
Red has to be the strangest nomination of all the Golden Globes. This entire category is strange. The Tourist, currently tracking at 20% on the Tomatometer, is a ridiculous nomination. Burlesque is at 36%, another unworthy nomination for a forgettable film. This is where the Globes have things wrong. These films deserve no nominations. The Kids Are All Right will have no competition taking home this award.
SHOULD WIN – Kids WILL WIN – Kids
BEST PICTURE – DRAMA: Black Swan, The Fighter, Inception, The King’s Speech, The Social Network
What a stacked category. The drama nominations are as strong as the musical/comedy nominations are weak. I have seen three of five, and anticipate seeing the other two in due time, and I imagine they all deserve to win on their own accord. But that isn’t how these work. The Fighter is the longest shot here. Inception is perhaps next in line; I think the picture was released too long ago, and has fallen in line behind some stronger contenders. Black Swan may be too strange for some voters, leaving America’s heavy hitter versus Britain’s heavy hitter. I am going with my gut, and pointing out Firth’s win as a win for The King’s Speech. Things are trending towards The Social Network early, and I think the timeliness of the subject matter and the seamlessness of the picture itself makes it the strongest in a list of strong candidates.
SHOULD WIN – Social WILL WIN – Social
SNUBS: Oddly enough, I see no representation of both the Coen Brothers' True Grit and Sofia Copolla's Somewhere, two big-time Oscar contenders. And I cannot believe that The Tourist and Burlesque were the best options for some of the musical/comedy categories. What about Scott Pilgrim? Or Cyrus, the dark comedy from earlier this year? Surely these films are more deserving of recognition...