The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly Of The Golden Globe Nominations: One Man’s Take

OK, I’ve had a chance to look at the nominations for a bit or at least long enough to make some hasty angry proclamations about what/who was robbed, etc. Check out the list below and see what I’m happy, sad and insanely bothered by. And be sure to weigh in with your own opinions at the end! What do you think of the nominations? We want to know.

BEST MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA
AMERICAN GANGSTER
ATONEMENT
EASTERN PROMISES
THE GREAT DEBATERS
MICHAEL CLAYTON
NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN
THERE WILL BE BLOOD

The Right Call
Count me among the happy for some kudos for Cronenberg. “Eastern Promises” was certainly one of the best of the year.

Are You Sure?!?
Um we all love Denzel, but is “The Great Debaters” really that good?

What the &*%^?
Clearly Sean Penn blew some smoke in the face of the Hollywood Foreign Press. Seven nominees in the category and no room for “Into the Wild”? Yikes. Oh, and remember “Zodiac”? Yeah, the Globes didn’t either.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA
CATE BLANCHETT — ELIZABETH: THE GOLDEN AGE
JULIE CHRISTIE — AWAY FROM HER
JODIE FOSTER — THE BRAVE ONE
ANGELINA JOLIE — A MIGHTY HEART
KEIRA KNIGHTLEY — ATONEMENT

The Right Call
Usually I’d fault the Globes for so blatantly courting an A-lister but the truth is Jolie was pretty awesome in “A Mighty Heart.”

Are You Sure?!?
Again, Jodie can usually do no wrong by me but this film was not worthy of her talents.

What the &*%^?
Speaking of women I admire but who starred in dreck this year “Elizabeth” was just an awful, awful film.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA
GEORGE CLOONEY — MICHAEL CLAYTON
DANIEL DAY-LEWIS — THERE WILL BE BLOOD
JAMES MCAVOY — ATONEMENT
VIGGO MORTENSEN — EASTERN PROMISES
DENZEL WASHINGTON — AMERICAN GANGSTER

The Right Call
Daniel Day-Lewis should get his own category for being so unbelievable, but I’m thrilled that Clooney (truly the best work of his career) and Mortensen made it in.

Are You Sure?!?
I know Josh Brolin said very little in “No Country for Old Men,” but he’s the anchor of the best film of the year and that’s got to be worth something.

What the &*%^?
No expletives needed. The Globes got this one right.

BEST MOTION PICTURE – COMEDY OR MUSICAL
ACROSS THE UNIVERSE
CHARLIE WILSON’S WAR
HAIRSPRAY
JUNO
SWEENEY TODD

The Right Call
Once it’s been seen by enough people, “Juno” will be a touchstone for a generation of teens. And anytime Burton gets actual critical recognition, I’m a happy guy.

Are You Sure?!?
I’m actually something of an “Across the Universe” fan, but if there’s a movie that’s got 45 minutes of extraneous material in it, it should not get a top category nod.

What the &*%^?
Anyone notice that the best musical or comedy category features neither the best musical (“Once”) nor the best comedy (“Knocked Up”)?

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE – COMEDY OR MUSICAL
AMY ADAMS – ENCHANTED
NIKKI BLONSKY – HAIRSPRAY
HELENA BONHAM CARTER – SWEENEY TODD
MARION COTILLARD – LA VIE EN ROSE
ELLEN PAGE – JUNO

The Right Call
Amy Adams and Nikki Blonsky both elevated syrupy concoctions into something a little bit awesome in each case. Well done.

Are You Sure?!?
No complaints here. I love the authentic low-key performance of Market Irglova in “Once,” but I don’t know who I’d boot from the above five.

What the &*%^?
Again, I’m good with this quintet.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE – COMEDY OR MUSICAL
JOHNNY DEPP — SWEENEY TODD
RYAN GOSLING — LARS AND THE REAL GIRL
TOM HANKS — CHARLIE WILSON’S WAR
PHILIP SEYMOUR HOFFMAN — THE SAVAGES
JOHN C. REILLY — WALK HARD: THE DEWEY COX STORY

The Right Call
They may not be born-and-bred singers, but Reilly and Depp proved it’s the actor that counts more than the singer when it comes to these heartfelt roles.

Are You Sure?!?
Gosling is a great talent to be sure. But his muted performance in “Lars” was a little stunt-y for my taste.

What the &*%^?
Where’s the love for Seth Rogen?!? He made being a schlub cool last year, and that’s gotta count for something.

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM
BEE MOVIE
RATATOUILLE
THE SIMPSONS MOVIE

The Right Call
Hurray for good relatively unsophisticated animation. “The Simpsons Movie” may not look as gorgeous as its competitors but it made me laugh my ass off a whole lot more.

Are You Sure?!?
Full disclosure: I haven’t seen “Persepolis” yet but in principle I’d love to see a non-kid-friendly animated flick sneak into this category.

What the &*%^?
I know I’m screaming to myself here, but “Beowulf” was the sensory experience of the year at the movies. There’s never been anything like it.

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS AND 2 DAYS (ROMANIA)
THE DIVING BELL AND THE BUTTERFLY (FRANCE AND USA)
THE KITE RUNNER (USA)
LUST, CAUTION (TAIWAN)
PERSEPOLIS (FRANCE)

The Right Call
I’m not much of a fan of Julian Schnabel’s films usually, but clearly “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” is touching a chord.

Are You Sure?!?
If his name weren’t Ang Lee would “Lust, Caution” really be here?

What the &*%^?
“The Orphanage” is the scariest film of the year. It deserves to be recognized.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MOTION PICTURE
CATE BLANCHETT — I’M NOT THERE
JULIA ROBERTS — CHARLIE WILSON’S WAR
SAOIRSE RONAN — ATONEMENT
AMY RYAN — GONE BABY GONE
TILDA SWINTON — MICHAEL CLAYTON

The Right Call
There’s a lot to love here. Saoirse Ronan dominates the first stellar 40 minutes of “Atonement.” Amy Ryan manages to steal scenes from Ed Harris in “Gone Baby Gone” and Tilda Swinton may be the most fully realized villain of the year.

Are You Sure?!?
I know she’s America’s sweetheart and everything, but Julia Roberts does not belong in this class. Sorry.

What the &*%^?
Kally MacDonald (“No Country for Old Men”) and Vanessa Redgrave (“Atonement”) may not have the screen-time of these five, but they were stellar.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MOTION PICTURE
CASEY AFFLECK — THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD
JAVIER BARDEM — NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN
PHILIP SEYMOUR HOFFMAN — CHARLIE WILSON’S WAR
JOHN TRAVOLTA — HAIRSPRAY
TOM WILKINSON — MICHAEL CLAYTON

The Right Call
It may have said it starred Brad Pitt, but “Jesse James” was the film it was because of Affleck. Witness the Pitt-less last 30 minutes, the most fascinating of the film.

Are You Sure?!?
Kudos to Travolta for being brave, but he was the least of the treats in “Hairspray.”

What the &*%^?
Paul Dano (“There Will Be Blood”) and Ben Foster (“3:10 to Yuma”) proved they were the real deal this year. Too bad they didn’t get the validation they so deserved.

BEST DIRECTOR – MOTION PICTURE
TIM BURTON — SWEENEY TODD
ETHAN COEN & JOEL COEN — NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN
JULIAN SCHNABEL — THE DIVING BELL AND THE BUTTERFLY
RIDLEY SCOTT — AMERICAN GANGSTER
JOE WRIGHT — ATONEMENT

The Right Call
The Coens’ direction in “No Country for Old Men” was elegant, precise and just about flawless.

Are You Sure?!?
I’ll admit I liked “American Gangster” a lot more than I thought I would, but Scott’s direction is not going to be remembered for this one. It’s that simple.

What the &*%^?
P.T. Anderson is absolutely and categorically the finest filmmaking talent of his generation. “There Will Be Blood” is a masterpiece, and his omission here is just going to look all the more glaring as the years go by.

BEST SCREENPLAY – MOTION PICTURE
DIABLO CODY — JUNO
ETHAN COEN & JOEL COEN — NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN
CHRISTOPHER HAMPTON — ATONEMENT
RONALD HARWOOD — THE DIVING BELL AND THE BUTTERFLY
AARON SORKIN — CHARLIE WILSON’S WAR

The Right Call
Yes, Cody’s the flavor of the moment, and it’s all a little precious at times, but there’s no denying that “Juno” is a cut above what it had any right to be.

Are You Sure?!?
Another vote for P.T. here. Just because a lot of the script consists of stuff other than dialogue doesn’t make it any less brilliant.

What the &*%^?
It may be 30 years too late for the right era, but Tony Gilroy’s taut soul-searching script for “Michael Clayton” was nothing short of mesmerizing.

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE – MOTION PICTURE
MICHAEL BROOK, KAKI KING, EDDIE VEDDER — INTO THE WILD
CLINT EASTWOOD — GRACE IS GONE
ALBERTO IGLESIAS — THE KITE RUNNER
DARIO MARIANELLI — ATONEMENT
HOWARD SHORE — EASTERN PROMISES

The Right Call
One of the most underrated composers today has got to be Howard Shore. Well deserved.

Are You Sure?!?
Marco Beltrami’s score for “3:10 to Yuma” took me straight back to the old West and all the classics it inspired. That’s a good thing.

What the &*%^?
Yup, I’m going to mention “There Will Be Blood” again. Noticing a theme?

BEST ORIGINAL SONG – MOTION PICTURE
“DESPEDIDA” — LOVE IN THE TIME OF CHOLERA
Music by: Shakira, Antonio Pinto
Lyrics by: Shakira
“GRACE IS GONE” — GRACE IS GONE
Music by: Clint Eastwood
Lyrics by: Carole Bayer Sager
“GUARANTEED” — INTO THE WILD
Music & Lyrics by: Eddie Vedder
“THAT’S HOW YOU KNOW” — ENCHANTED
Music & Lyrics by: Alan Menken
“WALK HARD” — WALK HARD: THE DEWEY COX STORY
Music & Lyrics by: Marshall Crenshaw, John C. Reilly, Judd Apatow, Jake Kasdan

The Right Call
It’s more than a goof of a song. “Walk Hard” deserves its place.

Are You Sure?!?
I’d shake my head more at the Shakira nomination if it didn’t at least mean that now she’s got a chance to liven up the Oscar festivities with her hip shaking shenanigans.

What the &*%^?
Where is “Once”?!?!? I say again WHERE IS “ONCE”?!?!?