E: First off, I know tonight is chock full of fascinating television, but you really should do yourself a favor and check the show out. The Globes are notoriously the loosest party of the awards show season; Angelina Jolie jumped into a pool at the hotel where they’re held to celebrate her first win, gown and all. People get pretty nutty. And of course the clothes are great, which goes without saying, although people do take chances they might not take for Oscar, so that’s entertaining as well. And this year the races are surprisingly open, so there could be a bunch of surprises, which again is always fun. Tonight sets the tone for the rest of the season; the Globes don’t have a particularly great record of picking the eventual Oscar winners, but they definitely set the tone. Tonight we’ll have a better idea of who’s really in contention and who’s just there to celebrate and model designer duds.
But if I didn’t care about award shows, I would be tuning in tonight anyway, despite the Patriots playoff game and Downton Abbey and my normal packed Sunday schedule. Tonight, it’s all about the hosts – Amy Poehler and Tina Fey. I mean come on. After the genius stunt they pulled at the 2011 Emmys, I can’t even wait to see what those two do.
In case you are curious about winners and losers, I do have just a few thoughts. Check it out after the jump.
Best Supporting Actor:
Alan Arkin, Leonardo DiCaprio, Tommy Lee Jones, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Christoph Waltz
Let’s start with the most confusing category. In an unusually open year, any of these guys could win; four of the five are Oscar nominees this year (with Leo missing out in favorite of Silver Lining Playbook‘s Robert DeNiro). I’d even argue that it’s so wide open that while the winner here will automatically become the Oscar frontrunner, it won’t give whoever it is an unassailable hold on the statuette unless he then goes on to win the BAFTA and SAG. DiCaprio and Waltz might cancel each other out, Arkin won recently and has a very slight (if colorful) role. And because he won the Critics’ Choice, I’ll guess it’s The Master‘s Philip Seymour Hoffman, with Lincoln‘s Tommy Lee Jones as an strong alternate.
Best Supporting Actress:
Amy Adams, Sally Field, Anne Hathaway, Helen Hunt, Nicole Kidman.
Now this category is as close to a no-brainer as this year will bring. If it’s anyone but Les Mis‘s Anne Hathaway, it’s going to be a massive scandal that might reset the Oscar race. Again, this slate is almost perfectly in tune with Oscar (swapping out The Paperboy’s Nicole Kidman for Silver Lining Playbook‘s Jacki Weaver), but they don’t need to make Anne Hathaway the frontrunner; they could anoint her as an unstoppable phenomenon, however.
Best Actor, Musical or Comedy:
Jack Black, Bradley Cooper, Hugh Jackman, Ewan McGregor, Bill Murray
I think this comes down to a fight between the two Oscar nominees – the star of the musical, Hugh Jackman and the star of the comedy, Bradley Cooper. Can either one challenge Daniel Day-Lewis for the Oscar statuette? It’s possible. We’ll find out tonight which one of them has some momentum. The omission of the two supporting nominees Weaver and DeNiro makes me wonder if the Hollywood Foreign Press didn’t like Silver Lining Playbook quite as much as the Academy did, which could work against Cooper. After all, Les Mis in an international blockbuster. On the other hand, that’s because audiences like it; critics generally don’t. I think it’s Jackman, but I’m watching curiously for what it will do to the shape of the Oscar race if he loses. I’d love to hear either speech, though.
Best Actress, Musical or Comedy:
Emily Blunt, Judi Dench, Maggie Smith, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep
I think you have to go with the Oscar nominee here, one who has potential to win the Oscar: Jennifer Lawrence. There’s a trio of classy Brits and the ever marvelous Meryl Streep – and at the Globes, you can never count Meryl out, because they are not afraid of awarding her more than once in a quarter century (a la Oscar). But. Salmon Fishing in the Yemen and Hope Springs weren’t very substantial movies, I’ve never even heard of Quartet, and I don’t think there’s a lot of buzz around Best Exotic Marigold Hotel at this point. Jennifer Lawrence is an amazing actress who’s had an amazing year, starting with The Hunger Games and ending with a completely different but equally acclaimed performance. I would love love love to hear a speech from her – she tends to shoot from the hip in interviews, dropping the occasional curse word, and she’s refreshingly honest. It would be pretty interesting. You can’t underestimate how much a charming, exuberant, heartfelt or funny awards speech can do so for someone’s Oscar chances: Jamie Foxx may have won his Oscar not merely in his film but on the Golden Globes stage.
Best Actor, Drama:
Daniel Day-Lewis, Richard Gere, John Hawkes, Joaquin Phoenix, Denzel Washington
When they voted, the HFP didn’t know that John Hawkes was snubbed by the Academy. I do actually think it’s possible that Hawkes could sneak in for a win here, and I can’t even express how much I would love it if he did. That omission is the most painful of all the acting categories. And much as we revere Abraham Lincoln here in America, I’m not sure his story translates so well to international audiences; the movie didn’t receive the BAFTA nominations most would have expected, for example. So yes, I think it will be Day-Lewis (who gives great speeches), but I do think he’s beatable. It’s like Meryl Streep; everyone knows he’s a genius. Awards voters seem to prefer being surprised to find great performances in less expected places.
Best Actress, Drama:
Jessica Chastain, Marion Cotillard, Helen Mirren, Naomi Watts , Rachel Weisz.
Weirdly, only two of these women are nominated for Oscar. While Cotillard could certainly sneak in (her turn in Rust and Bone was highly acclaimed, and certainly the HFP isn’t going to care that it was in French), Chastain seems like the best bet. She burst on the scene last year with her first Oscar nomination; really, it was less a question of her being nominated and more which of her many critically performances she would be honored for. Zero Dark Thirty underperformed at the Oscar nominations, but it received full marks here. A win and a great speech here, along with a frustration among Academy members at what many see as a successful smear campaign against her movie, could combine to put Chastain over the top. The Globes love picking the hot new thing, and both Chastain and Lawrence fit the bill; tonight might set up a rivalry to last the entire awards season.
Mark Boal, Tony Kushner, David O. Russell, Quentin Tarantino, Chris Terrio
Lincoln’s Tony Kushner. There’s nothing else to say. Poetry on the page, that’s what they call it.
Ben Affleck, Kathryn Bigelow, Ang Lee, Steven Spielberg, Quentin Tarantino
While Ben Affleck took the Critics Choice, I can’t help thinking that Spielberg’s the one in charge here. Unless the HFP’s going to Bigelow’s tense thriller, Lincoln seems like the movie to beat.
Best Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy:
Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Les Miserables, Moonrise Kingdom, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, Silver Linings Playbook
This is the place for David O. Russell and Harvey Weinstein to make their move. If SLP has any shot of contending for Best Picture, it needs a win here. Because Les Mis failed to secure a Best Director Oscar nomination, there’s space open for Silver Linings – so let’s see if it’ll happen. As I mentioned above, however, I’m just not sure the Hollywood Foreign Press were as charmed by the dramedy as the Academy was. I’m super curious to see how it goes!
Best Motion Picture, Drama
Argo, Django Unchained, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Zero Dark Thirty
Of course you won’t be surprised that I’m picking Lincoln here. Yes, it could be Argo or Zero Dark Thirty, but this result is the most likely.
As for the rest of the categories, the new song from Les Mis (the forgettable “Suddenly” – and I say that as someone who loves the music of Les Mis) seems likely to take home that prize (sadly against the gorgeous “Skyfall” and haunting ballad “Safe and Sound,” the latter infuriatingly snubbed by Oscar). Frankenweenie is the most acclaimed movie on the animated feature list, though that doesn’t guarantee it a win: the same can be said of Amour among the foreign films. Lena Dunham might have a shot at being a Golden Globes It Girl if she beat both hosts, who are nominated as Best Actresses a Comedy series; Homeland seems likely to sweep the television drama categories as it did at the Emmys. Mandy Patinkin might even end up on the bandwagon, although I have to admit, I’d love to see The New Girl‘s Max Greenfield take home the supporting prize. Deputy Leo for the win! And, much as I love Archie Panjabi, with the heinous storyline she was given this fall, I’m rather hoping to see Maggie Smith as the devastatingly funny Dowager Countess of Grantham take home the prize. There’s not much time left now at all! I’ll be back tomorrow morning with reactions, hopefully still snickering over the funny bits our two funny ladies have in store.