2013 was a great year for leading ladies, with performances that were literally out-of-this-world and others more grounded but no less compelling. The Golden Globe Awards this Sunday spotlights all of these performances, but, as they say in “Highlander,” there can only be one.
The Best Actress, Drama category seems pretty set, but the Musical or Comedy category (spoiler: no musicals this year) is about as wide open as you can get, featuring some great performances in indie films going up against perennial acting powerhouses.
Best Actress, Drama
Who Should Win: Cate Blanchett
Voters might be swayed by the star power of Sandra Bullock or the historical greatness of Judi Dench, but Blanchett would be the rightful winner here. While “Blue Jasmine” got positive reviews, Blanchett’s performance as the titular Jasmine was almost universally lauded, and her portrait of a despairing woman who has been broken down by life is poignant and painful. While Sandra Bullock is great in “Gravity,” the real star of that film is Cuaron’s direction. “Blue Jasmine” working without Blanchett is just about unimaginable.
Who Will Win: Cate Blanchett
This race is about as locked up as a an awards race can be. Cate Blanchett is the clear favorite for her turn in “Blue Jasmine,” with a win already at the New York Film Critics awards, while neither Emma Thompson nor Kate Winslet have garnered any momentum through awards season. Dench gives a charming performance in “Philomena,” but the film was probably too niche for many voters. Blanchett’s biggest competition comes from Bullock in “Gravity.” The film has gotten many more accolades than “Jasmine,” and Bullock just won the People’s Choice award for favorite actress. Still, Blanchett should be able to hold her off and get her third Golden Globe.
Best Actress, Musical or Comedy
Who Should Win: Greta Gerwig
Did we say everyone loves a bad girl? Cause we happened to absolutely love Gerwig’s charming turn as Fraces Ha in the indie darling “Frances Ha.” Her quirky portrayal of a positive and resilient woman searching for herself is winning, as Frances is self-effacing enough that she seems human rather than like another manic pixie dream girl. The film couldn’t have pulled off that balance without Gerwig, who also co-wrote the film, as she delivers one of the most real, and most fun, performances in recent memory. We wouldn’t mind if Julie Delpy picked up the Globe for “Before Midnight,” especially to honor her performances in all three of the “Before” movies, but if someone has to pull off an upset, it should be Gerwig.
Who Will Win: Amy Adams
Everyone loves a bad girl, and there wasn’t a better bad girl this year than Adams in “American Hustle.” Adams delivered everything voters could want in the role, showing off her mastery of accents, bringing sex appeal without being overtly sexual, and remaining likeable even as she manipulates everyone around her. Plus, she looks just about as good in that ’70s fashion as anyone could. The Globes might decide to give it to Meryl Streep since, well, she’s Meryl Streep and she also pulls off another dialect in “August: Osage County,” but we imagine Adams will be the one giving the speech — in her regular accent — at the end of the day.
The Golden Globes air Sunday night at 8 p.m. ET. Keep an eye on MTV News for everything you need to know before, during and after the show.
Who do you think should win the Best Actress categories? Cast your vote!