Golden Globe nominations 2010

Posted 8:49 AM by crkota in Labels: ,
The Golden Globe Award nominations announced Tuesday morning were dominated by the story of a man living his life in perpetual limbo.

"Up in the Air" -- the critically lauded drama that stars George Clooney as a professional downsizer who never misses an airline connection but fails to connect with his family -- led the field with six nominations, including nods for best motion picture -- drama; best director (Jason Reitman), best screenplay; best actor (Clooney) and best supporting players (Vera Farmiga and Anna Kendrick). Up against "Up in the Air" in that best picture category: "Avatar," James Cameron’s sci-fi epic that reportedly wowed members of the Foreign Press Association during screenings last week; "The Hurt Locker," Kathryn Bigelow’s intense and in-the-moment Iraq War picture; a war epic of a very different sort, Quentin Tarantino’s "Inglourious Basterds"; and "Precious," the adaptation of Sapphire’s novel "Push," about a pregnant teenager suffering from unspeakable abuse.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association -- the group of international journalists behind the Globes, which revealed its field of contenders during an early morning news conference at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, Calif. -- routinely breaks its best-picture field into two categories, honoring five musicals or comedies in addition to the dramas.

The nominees on that funnier, more melodic end of the spectrum are: "Nine," the splashy adaptation of the Fellini-inspired Broadway show; "It’s Complicated," the rom-com for the 50-plus set starring Meryl Streep; "Julie & Julia," another Streep comedy, the one in which she cooks and clucks happily as Julia Child; "(500) Days of Summer," the boy-meets-then-loses-girl indie romance; and "The Hangover," the biggest box office hit (at least so far) among the top film contenders and proof that movies in which Mike Tyson air-drums to Phil Collins songs can, indeed, win some awards-season attention.

If "The Hangover" stood out as one of the Globes’ surprises in the film categories, it was hardly the only one. Among the other "Really?" moments:

-- Tobey Maguire’s nod for best actor in a drama for "Brothers," a film in limited release that never built much buzz in the all-important trophy-prediction blogosphere;

-- a nod for Julia Roberts as best actress in a musical-comedy for the almost-forgotten "Duplicity";

-- and not one, but two, nominations for Sandra Bullock, first for her turn as a no-nonsense businesswoman in "The Proposal" (musical/comedy), and second for her portrayal of a no-nonsense Tennessee woman who takes in a homeless high schooler in "The Blind Side" (drama).

Two other actors -- Matt Damon and Streep -- also walked away with dual nominations, the former for his dramatic work in "Invictus" and his comedic turn as clueless corporate spy in "The Informant!" and the latter for her roles in "It’s Complicated" and "Julie & Julia." (For those keeping score at home, that marks 25 lifetime Golden Globe nods for Streep. But at this point, really, who’s counting?)

The breakdown in another key category, best director, looks almost identical to the best motion picture category. Drama line-up: Reitman for "Up in the Air," Bigelow for "The Hurt Locker," Tarantino for "Inglourious Basterds," Cameron for "Avatar," plus one veteran whose film didn’t make the best picture cut, Clint Eastwood for his rugby uplifter "Invictus." (Which director in the best drama category was left without his own nomination? That would be Lee Daniels for "Precious.")

The Golden Globes have become newsworthy primarily because they serve as the ceremonial kickoff to the annual cinematic guessing game known as Oscar season. But let’s not forget that the Foreign Press also recognizes achievement in television, an area that was marked by far fewer surprises this year.

In the best drama category, "Mad Men," which has won the honor for the past two years, was again recognized, along with HBO’s "Big Love," "Dexter," "House" and "True Blood." The best comedy category also delivered three of the usual, albeit hilarious suspects -- "The Office," "30 Rock," "Entourage" -- but added a pair of newcomers to the mix: ABC’s "Modern Family" and -- get ready to burst into a round of "Don’t Stop Believin’," kids -- Fox’s popular "Glee."

As is always the case when nominations are announced, some notable names were left off the list. Peter Jackson’s once-buzzy "The Lovely Bones" scored only a single nod, for Stanley Tucci’s supporting performance. Same deal for the acclaimed "An Education," which was given recognition solely for its breakout star, Carey Mulligan. She received a nomination -- along with Bullock, Emily Blunt ("The Young Victoria"), Helen Mirren ("The Last Station") and newcomer Gabourey Sidibe ("Precious") -- in the best actress in a drama category.

The best actor in a drama contenders included Maguire, Clooney, Colin Firth ("A Single Man"), Morgan Freeman ("Invictus") and the Dude himself, Jeff Bridges, whose work as a grizzled country singer in "Crazy Heart" was already being touted as the performance to beat even before the Globes announcement.

So what does this all mean? Do the people basking in the glow of Foreign Press adulation this morning have a lock on an Oscar nod come Feb. 2? Not necessarily. Although the Globes often serve as foreshadowing for the Academy Awards, it’s worth noting that only once in the last five years -- last year, when "Slumdog Millionaire" fever swept the continents -- has a Globes’ best picture winner synched up with the Oscar’s top prize winner.

In other words, tune in to NBC when Ricky Gervais hosts the Globes on Jan. 17. But also keep an open mind.

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