Only in the bizarro world of the Hollywood Foreign Press does "The Tourist" earn a Best Picture nomination and Danny Boyle's "127 Hours" go empty-handed. Granted, the Depp/Jolie pic scored a nod in the Best Comedy or Musical section and Boyle's mountain climbing drama was shut out of the five noms-only Best Dramatic picture category, but still, doesn't that seem odd?
The annual Golden Globe nominations were announced this morning and one of our favorite films of the year and one that's been sadly losing Oscar heat since TIFF, "127 Hours" was shut out of the two most important categories, Best Drama and Best Director. The film centering on mountain climber Aron Ralston who became trapped under a boulder in a 2003 hiking expedition in Utah and is forced to take extreme measures to survive did score some key nods including Best Actor (James Franco) and Best Screenplay (Boyle and Simon Beaufoy) and Best Score (A.R. Rahman), but the major awards eluded the picture (let's face it, Boyle cleaned up last year, so it just might mean folks wanna make room for others).
The other major, major snub was the blanket exclusion of the Coen Brothers' "True Grit" which was absent in every category. The suspicious snub makes one want to believe that the HFP didn't even see the movie (hey, it seems entirely feasible knowing them; maybe the screener didn't come with a new flatscreen and luncheon). Considering the Comedy/Musical section of the Globes is like the Oscar 10, but gives props to undervalued comedic films, the entire category seems like a complete waste of time this year with obvious contender "Easy A" missing and instead the the five slots filled with four aggressively medicore pictures -- "The Tourist," "Burlesque," "Red" and "Alice In Wonderland." No "Love And Other Drugs" above those films even though both leads Jake Gyllenhaal and Anne Hathaway scored Best Actor and Actress nominations in the Comedy/Musical categories?
That makes no sense! Welcome to the Golden Globes. The only respectable film in the Comedy/Musical section is "The Kids Are All Right" which is strong enough that it will likely end up one of the Oscar 10 Best Picture noms (and deservedly so).
Another big, unfortunate snub is Javier Bardem's arresting performance in "Biutiful." A dark, harrowing, but powerful drama by Alejandro González Iñárritu, Bardem won the Best Actor prize at Cannes, but the film was consigned to a Best Foreign Film nomination only.
Also ignored was Mike Leigh's wonderful seasons-of-life drama, "Another Year." Many pundits had locked on the film as reaching the Oscar 10 and at least Lesley Manville scoring a Best Supporting Actress nomination, but the film was absent across the board.
Another film that should have made bigger waves was Ben Affleck's mostly terrific crime drama, "The Town," but it was relegated to a Supporting nom for Jeremy Renner only.
In even more nonsensical choices, both Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie scored Best Actor/Actress nominations for "The Tourist." Dear, HFPA, did you not see any other good comedies this year? Even performances and pictures like "Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World" "The Other Guys," "Due Date" and yes, even "Hot Tub Time Machine" were more deserving than the frickin' 'Tourist,' but the Golden Globes remains, as ever, a populist awards show and there's really no way they're going to snub two of the world's biggest stars in Depp and Jolie and then miss out on a chance to hobnob with them at some kiss-ass meet and greet.
Some would argue that Robert Duvall's low-key turn in "Get Low” was certainly worth a nomination as well, but apparently he's not a cool enough guy to score some hang time with. At least according to the HFPA (we'd buy you a beer anytime, Bob).
The Surprisingly Good:
Jennifer Lawrence rightfully earning a Best Actress nomination for "Winter's Bone."
"Blue Valentine" leads Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling getting their deserved noms.
Emma Stone earning a Best Actress nod for her excellent "Easy A" turn in the Comedy/Drama section
Aussie actress Jackie Weaver scoring a super-deserved turn for her loving yet manipulative mother in "Animal Kingdom."
Mila Kunis in "Black Swan." She's good, but good enough to deserve a nomination? Maybe at the Golden Globes; one would assume she has no shot at an Oscar nomination.
Michael Douglas's Best Supporting nom in “Wall Street 2." A sympathy vote? There's been zero awards talk for him otherwise this year.
"True Grit" which was shut out across the board.
"127 Hours" which perhaps not-so-surprisingly failed to get nominated in the Best Drama and Best Director categories
Mike Leigh's "Another Year," which was unfortunately entirely absent, but it may still have a shot at the less populist Oscars.
Clint Mansell's "Black Swan" score
Rachel Portman's score for "Never Let Me Go."
Daft Punk's score to "Tron Legacy," though admittedly, it was slightly underwhelming all things considered.
Carter Burwell's score to “True Grit,” but since it combines elements of new compositions with existing work (much like "Black Swan"), it simply might have been ineligible.
The Outright Retarded
"The Tourist" and most of the Comedy/Musical categories
Three nominations for “Alice in Wonderland," a picture that will easily land on our worst films of the year list, and will win a Playlist special award for Danny Elfman's annoying Original Score - also nominated for a Globe
Snubs and surprises are always a bit subjective. Your thoughts?