Well, there is no doubting the fact that Jason Reitman’s Up in the Air has won the hearts of the Golden Globe voters. Avatar, Nine and Inglourious Basterds are the other films they seemed to really like. It was the double supporting actress nominations that really pushed Up in the Air over the top with them — also, Up in the Air was nominated for the big ones – Picture, Director, Screenplay, Actor, Supporting Actress squared. That is, of course, what Up in the Air has going for it: all areas of it are nearly perfect — writing, directing, acting, timing.
But I think it’s also important to remember that the Globes, like the Critics Choice, are not the Oscars. They can send the needle in a certain direction for sure, but they don’t determine the race. They never have, they never will. Therefore, the omission of Jeremy Renner is not that surprising here.
However, both Nine and Inglourious Basterds are doing very well with the two biggest voting groups in the race towards the nominations, which is interesting since both had to kind of struggle for buzz with some of the loudest voices online. Just goes to show you that you have to always take what a handful of people say early on in the race with a grain of salt. In other words, just because one person who writes a website sees a movie and says it has no shot doesn’t mean anyone should trust them completely: nobody knows anything.
And then again, having said THAT, Oscar and the guilds are a whole different set. The BAFTAs are also one to watch — they seem to have more freedom to choose whatever films they like without regard to buzz and without worrying about how it “looks.” So, somewhere in there is the perfect formula that takes early word multiplied by the BFCA, divided by the HFPA, dumped into the BAFTA, stirred up, with a dash of the ACE, ADG, ASC, CSA, VES and then poured into a pan shaped like the DGA, topped with a healthy heaping of WGA, bake it and it comes out Oscar.
There are master chefs old and young, and there are way too many of them in the kitchen. Just remember, if all else fails, throw everything at the wall and see what sticks.
Here are a few things I learned from these Globes noms:
Avatar is a hearty contender – if it can woo the SCI-FI phobic HFPA we have a real Oscar race now with Avatar up against Hurt Locker, Up in the Air, Nine and Inglourious Basterds — somewhere in there would be our Oscar five. Since there is an Oscar ten, it’s a little easier.
The love of celebrity (for big ratings) is alive and well among the HFPA – but who can blame them. In this economy?
Up in the Air is gaining momentum, even if it isn’t becoming a critics’ darling (better for it as an Oscar contender).
Kathryn Bigelow continues to be the frontrunner for Best Director. The heat is almost visible in color. To win Best Picture, Hurt Locker needs those acting nods, I should think.
One of the biggest surprises was the omission of Alec Baldwin in the supporting actor category when it’s clear It’s Complicated is in play. It is going to have competition with Julie & Julia. And both will have to compete with Nine for the win in that category.
Despite the Fantastic Mr. Fox doing well with the critics, the animated Oscar is still Up’s to lose.
There is no way the Globes are going to choose anyone but George Clooney for their actor prize. That’s my guess but we’ll have to see how it plays out.
Invictus narrowly missed a Best Pic nod, though it did get Director — the film will still be among the ten nominated Best Pictures.