Are you watching the Golden Globes? Even though the last quarter of 2011 and first quarter of 2012 are filled with awards (Critic’s Circles, Guilds, etc.) this is really the first big show that will give us a chance to look at what the Oscars have in store for us.
So what have we learned thus far, almost an hour in to the ceremony? Well, it seems as though this year is the year of the indie/art house film. Some of you may be familiar with the fact that the Globes go to television shows as well, but as this is Man, I Love Films I intend on keeping my commentary strictly movie related.
Best Film – Drama - The Descendants
Best Film – Musical/Comedy - The Artist
Best Actor – Drama - George Clooney – The Descendants
Best Actress – Drama - Meryl Streep – The Iron Lady
Best Actor – Musical/Comedy -Jean Dujardin - The Artist
Best Actress – Musical Comedy - Michelle Williams – My Week with Marilyn
Best Supporting Actor – Christopher Plummer – Beginners
Best Supporting Actress – Octavia Spencer – The Help
Best Director – Motion Picture - Martin Scorsese – Hugo
Best Motion Picture Screenplay - Midnight in Paris – Woody Allen
Best Animated Film - The Adventures of Tintin
Best Foreign Language Film - A Separation
Best Original Song - Masterpiece – W.E.
Best Score – Ludovic Bource – The Artist
Thus far I can’t say I see any surprises (though My Week with Marilyn as a musical or comedy seems…. odd.) While my distain for Midnight in Paris is well documented I can’t say it really “surprises” me that it was chosen. Allen has a gift for reaching critics and audiences with charming tales, so his victory here is pretty standard. Scorsese, meanwhile, seems poised to keep winning awards now that the Oscars said it was ok. He got a Globe for his direction on Hugo.
Otherwise, outside of The Help and to a lesser extent Hugo, the awards seem to be a feast of indie wonder. Beginners saw love with a win for the phenomenal work of Christopher Plummer. My Week with Marilyn saw a win for Michelle Williams in the titular role. The award for best score went to the little independent film that could, The Artist, which – being a silent film – was really all score. That film also resulted in a win for Jean Dujardin in the Best Actor – Musical/Comedy category. Dujardin really does deserve it, doing with one line what many actor’s can’t do with a whole film of dialogue.
Time will tell how the rest of the awards do. I’ll try to keep a running update on this page.
Update #1 – Not sure where this one falls. Meryl Streep just won Best Actress – Drama for her work in The Iron Lady. This is, again, not unexpected. That role was virtually crafted to attract awards attention and do not much else -as I said in my write-up for the trailer. Since it’s only playing in just over 800 theaters, I suppose this continues the trend of Indie Domination – though since the film was, as I said, made for the role purpose of getting Streep this award I am not sure it counts.
Update #2 – Apparently it was a good thing I went to see The Artist today, as it brings home it’s third award by winning Best Picture – Musical/Comedy. To get this award it beat out 50/50, Bridesmaids, My Week with Marilyn, and Midnight in Paris. While I think that the first three may have been worthy opponents, I think that Midnight in Paris was rightfully slain.
Update #3 – George Clooney gets to walk away with a statue for his work in Alexander Payne’s The Descendants. Not having seen the movie (GASP!) I can’t say much about this. I can’t even say that I think Fassbender should have won because outside of Brad Pitt in The Tree of Life there was no better performance in a motion picture by a male this year.
Update #4 – And the big winner – Best Picture – Drama – goes to The Descendants. Again… didn’t see it. I guess that puts me at a disadvantage here. Still, I think I can do a little wrap-up before saying goodnight.
We all know by now that studios use indie productions as a means of getting a lot of money and attention for smaller production costs. This year’s Golden Globes seem to have proven that. There is a decline in the amount of attention going to larger scale productions in general, to the point that I have to wonder if we ought to stop calling them “indie films” and just “award films.” Sure, some people, like Martin Scorsese, manage to straddle the line between big market and award-garnering. In general, though, there’s still that subset of films you see and go “yep, that will get some attention from the awards.”
Is that a good thing? Do we really want to create a sort of small-scale preserve for the best of the cinematic craft? Time will tell. Maybe some day we will see the equivalent of The Dark Knight getting Best Picture. Until that day, I look forward to this year’s crop of award films.