Friday, January 9, 2009

Official Golden Globes Predictions 2009

The title says it all. I've got predictions for everything in the film categories. Don't have the energy to get into TV nominations. Mainly because the TV I watch is limited to stuff on DVD or DVR.

Best Motion Picture--Drama:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button


The Reader

Revolutionary Road

Slumdog Millionaire

Winner: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Reason: It's been getting raves since two months before its release. And it's widely regarded as the best of the year, except by Ebert. Reason enough.

Runner-up: Slumdog Millionaire

Reason: It's a terrific, life-affirming masterpiece, but I think it'll be second-string to the man getting younger than everybody else.

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture--Drama:

Anne Hathaway, Rachel Getting Married

Angelina Jolie, Changeling

Kristin Scott-Thomas, I've Loved You So Long

Meryl Streep, Doubt
Kate Winslet, Revolutionary Road

Winner: Anne Hathaway.
Reason: Her performance has been called "electrifying" and "revelatory." Anything else?

Runner-up: Angelina Jolie.
Reason: Hers was a praised performance (for a good reason), but the mixed buzz for the film will hurt her chances.

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture--Drama:

Leonardo DiCaprio, Revolutionary Road
Frank Langella, Frost/Nixon

Sean Penn, Milk

Brad Pitt, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Mickey Rourke, The Wrestler

Winner: Mickey Rourke.
Reason: Does the phrase "one of the great performances in cinema" do anything for you? Rourke has long been forgotten since he messed up his career, and this is his great comeback. Have yet to see the film, but his scenes are startlingly brilliant.

Runner-up: Sean Penn.
Reason: He's said to embody the character--as he always does--with life and energy. Playing a gay activist has its share of stereotypes to overcome and he apparently does it. Can't wait to rent this.

Best Motion Picture--Musical/Comedy:

Burn after Reading
In Bruges
Mamma Mia!

Vicky Cristina Barcelona

Winner: Happy-Go-Lucky.
Reason: Been veritably fell for head over heels because of its brilliant human comedy. I wouldn't know. I just think it's the little movie that will.

Runner-Up: Mamma Mia!
Reason: One word: musical. One name: Meryl Streep. Does there need to be anything else? Maybe critical decisiveness, which is strangely divided, while mostly everyone loved the un-nominated Tropic Thunder. Huh.

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture--Musical/Comedy:

Rebecca Hall, Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Sally Hawkins, Happy-Go-Lucky
Frances McDormand, Burn after Reading
Meryl Streep, Mamma Mia!
Emma Thompson, Last Chance Harvey

Winner: Sally Hawkins.
Reason: She's like a comedic Anne Hathaway here. Apparently revelatory, unbeatable performance.

Runner-up: Meryl Streep.
Reason: Would be weird, her winning for this and not Doubt. But she might, if Hawkins doesn't pull through. Which, you know, she will.

Best Supporting Actor:

Tom Cruise, Tropic Thunder
Robert Downey Jr., Tropic Thunder
Ralph Fiennes, The Duchess
Philip Seymour Hoffman, Doubt
Heath Ledger, The Dark Knight

Winner: Heath Ledger.
Reason: Is one necessary? He's already won 23/25 awards. This will be #24. I think the whole country will be flabbergasted if someone else wins. But that's not even a possibility. Pretty much every critic of the film--even its detractors, with the exception of Armond White--has called Ledger's Joker is the best performance of the year, no matter how strong Sean Penn's Harvey Milk, Mickey Rourke's Randy "The Ram" Robinson, and Robert Downey Jr.'s Kirk Lazarus were. Most of the same critics think he could have even beaten out Penn and Rourke in Best Actor. It's the highest praise. Plus, the original Joker himself, Jack Nicholson, called the performance better than his own. That's praise that the HFPA (and the AMPAS) can't ignore.

Runner-up: Robert Downey Jr.
Reason: That's a funny word. This is only if things fall through. Which, as I've pointed out, is not gonna happen. Still, Downey's performance has been called the best purely comedic/satiric one of the last few years (up there with Sacha Baron Cohen's Borat, they say). So, it's one to fall back on.

Best Supporting Actress:

Amy Adams, Doubt
Penelope Cruz, Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Viola Davis, Doubt
Marisa Tomei, The Wrestler
Kate Winslet, The Reader

Winner: Penelope Cruz.
Reason: Her role as the bisexual wife of Javier Bardem's character has been praised. She's practically the Heath Ledger of ladies this year.

Runner-up: Viola Davis.
Reason: Her infamous ten-minute sequence as the mother of a possible abuse victim has pretty much been the talk of the town for five weeks.

Best Animated Feature Film:

Kung Fu Panda

Winner: WALL-E.
Reason: Um...

Runner-up: Bolt
It opened to very big buzz. Plus, it's one brilliant film, much better than Kung Fu Panda, and and that's the critical consensus.

Best Foreign-Language Film:

The Baader-Meinhof Complex
Everlasting Moments
I've Loved You So Long
Waltz with Bashir

Winner: Gomorrah.
Reason: While I'm surprised that Let the Right One In is not in this group, as it probably would've won being the critical darling it is, this film has been called the finest mob drama since GoodFellas. If that doesn't lead to a win, nothing will.

Runner-up: I've Loved You So Long.
Reason: Kristin Scott-Thomas' unequivocally praised performance might lead it to a win, but I don't see that happening, really.

Best Director--Motion Picture:

Danny Boyle, Slumdog Millionaire
Stephen Daldry, The Reader
David Fincher, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Ron Howard, Frost/Nixon
Sam Mendes, Revolutionary Road

Winner: David Fincher.
Reason: He's created a masterpiece here, and if it wins picture, he'll win.

Runner-up: Danny Boyle.
Reason: Really the only one to fall back on if Fincher doesn't win. Of course, his film is a masterpiece, as well. So...

Best Screenplay--Motion Picture:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
The Reader
Slumdog Millionaire

Winner: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
Reason: Eric Roth's epic is on par with Forrest Gump, which won in 1994. The same will happen to this. That, and it's a brilliant screenplay.

Runner-up: Slumdog Millionaire.
Reason: It's really these two giants vying for the majors this year. But Button is more the critical darling, so it'll sweep everything with Slumdog not far behind.

Best Original Score--Motion Picture:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Slumdog Millionaire

Winner: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
Reason: It's indelible, haunting, and lends to the proceedings. Also, it's widely regarded the finest scoring work of the year.

Runner-up: Slumdog Millionaire.
Reason: I think it's going to be forgotten in this category. Though perhaps Button's score is slower and more evocative, I actually prefer A.R. Rahman's glossier and more upbeat rock music score, and its innovative use of the music from "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" It's severely overlooked and I think most people will believe it to be a wild card. Me? I think it's a dark horse.

Best Original Song--Motion Picture:

"Down to Earth," WALL-E
"Gran Torino," Gran Torino
"I Thought I'd Lost You," Bolt
"Once in a Lifetime," Cadillac Records
"The Wrestler," The Wrestler

Winner: "The Wrestler."
Reason: It's a haunting song, the best movie-produced song of the year, and a masterpiece all its own.

Runner-up: "Down to Earth."
Reason: It's a catchy tune. And it's from Pixar. And it's by Peter Gabriel.

And that's it. Follow me tomorrow evening on my Twitter page, as I have live updates from the show.

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