Is it awards season already? Early this morning, Kate Beckinsale, Jeremy Piven, Peter Krause and Paula Patton announced the 2015 Golden Globe Award nominations. As happened last year, I’m once again disappointed that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has largely focused on safe picks, with few of the truly mystifying oddball nominations that used to be a hallmark of the event. One or two may have slipped in, however.
The Globes dole out awards to both film and television. Among movies, ‘Birdman’ led the pack with seven nominations, followed by ‘Boyhood’ and ‘The Imitation Game’ with five each. For television, HBO dominated (as it usually does) with fifteen nominations.
Best Motion Picture: Drama
- ‘The Imitation Game’
- ‘The Theory of Everything’
In an attempt to prove that they’re ahead of the curve, Golden Globe voters often highlight one or two little-seen or heard-of movies that will only open in a couple of theaters before the end of the year for awards consideration purposes. This year, that distinction goes to the clearly awards-baiting Martin Luther King bio-pic ‘Selma’, which won’t hit general release until January. Will the buzz of a Golden Globe nomination propel the film to greater acclaim, or will it be quickly forgotten? That remains to be seen.
The other nominees here are mostly predictable choices. The most notable thing about them is that they’re all small indie films, with no big-studio mainstream hits. The Globes usually mix a few of those in. I expected to see ‘Gone Girl’ on this list, for example.
Best Motion Picture: Comedy or Musical
- ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’
- ‘Into the Woods’
- ‘St. Vincent’
The HFPA’s definition of “Comedy or Musical” is frequently perplexing, but most of these can at least arguably fit the category. Globe voters clearly loved ‘Birdman’, even though the film was very divisive among other critics. ‘Pride’ and ‘St. Vincent’ also have limited prospects for future Oscar glory.
‘Into the Woods’ looks pretty horrid, but Globe voters traditionally have really terrible taste in musicals, so a nomination here isn’t too unexpected.
Best Animated Feature
- ‘Big Hero 6’
- ‘The Book of Life’
- ‘The Boxtrolls’
- ‘How to Train Your Dragon 2’
- ‘The Lego Movie’
‘The Book of Life’ had a mixed-to-negative reception and appears to be merely filling space on this list.
- Wes Anderson, ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’
- Ava DuVernay, ‘Selma’
- David Fincher, ‘Gone Girl’
- Alejandro Iñárritu, ‘Birdman’
- Richard Linklater, ‘Boyhood’
It seems strange to see ‘Gone Girl’ nominated here but not in the Best Picture category.
Best Actor: Motion Picture Drama
- Steve Carell, ‘Foxcatcher’
- Benedict Cumberbatch, ‘The Imitation Game’
- Jake Gyllenhaal, ‘Nightcrawler’
- David Oyelowo, ‘Selma’
- ‘Eddie Redmayne, ‘The Theory of Everything’
Nothing too surprising on this list.
Best Actress: Motion Picture Drama
- Jennifer Aniston, ‘Cake’
- Felicity Jones, ‘The Theory of Everything’
- Julianne Moore, ‘Still Alice’
- Rosamund Pike, ‘Gone Girl’
- Reese Witherspoon, ‘Wild’
I’ve never heard of either ‘Cake’ or ‘Still Alice’.
Best Actor: Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
- Ralph Fiennes, ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’
- Michael Keaton, ‘Birdman’
- Bill Murray, ‘St. Vincent’
- Joaquin Phoenix, ‘Inherent Vice’
- Christoph Waltz, ‘Big Eyes’
Is ‘Big Eyes’ supposed to be a musical or a comedy? It looks like neither.
Best Actress: Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
- Amy Adams, ‘Big Eyes’
- Emily Blunt, ‘Into the Woods’
- Helen Mirren, ‘The Hundred-Foot Journey’
- Julianne Moore, ‘Maps to the Stars’
- Quvenzhané Wallis, ‘Annie’
I see that David Cronenberg’s ‘Maps to the Stars’ currently has a mildly positive score on Rotten Tomatoes, but it seems like every review of it I’ve read has excoriated the film.
Next, we move onto the television nominations, which mostly celebrate returning favorites.
Best Drama Series
- ‘The Affair’
- ‘Downton Abbey’
- ‘Game of Thrones’
- ‘The Good Wife’
- ‘House of Cards’
The only new pick here is Showtime’s ‘The Affair’. I watched the first episode of that and thought it seemed pretty good, but I’m not sure how the premise can sustain for an entire series, and I haven’t had a chance to watch the following episodes.
Best Comedy Series
- ‘Jane the Virgin’
- ‘Orange Is the New Black’
- ‘Silicon Valley’
My wife enjoys ‘Jane the Virgin’. Is ‘Transparent’ the Amazon series with Jeffrey Tambor as a transvestite? That’s weird.
Best TV Movie or Miniseries
- ‘The Missing’
- ‘The Normal Heart’
- ‘Olive Kitteridge’
- ‘True Detective’
If you ask me, I’d assume that ‘Fargo’ and ‘True Detective’ should be the front-runners in this category. Which probably means that ‘The Normal Heart’ will win.
The full list of nominations can be found on the official Golden Globes web site. Tiny Fey and Amy Poehler will return to host the awards ceremony (for the third time in a row) on January 11, 2015.