Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Globes Snubs From Ruff' to Gritty

While the Hollywood Foreign Press Association does not have member overlap with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, their very high profile assures that their nominees get a large media platform with which to pursue more Oscar votes. Sometimes it helps sometimes it doesn't. But here's a list of major contenders shunned by the Globe voters this morning.

"I never thought they'd use my stuff!"

Mark Ruffalo -though The Kids Are All Right won four major nominations, he was still snubbed. This could be a bad Oscar sign. As we've long thought, he makes acting look far too easy. He takes complex characters and performs them so naturalistically that voters who like to see actors sweat or strain for effect -- there are many such voters as awards history readily proves -- will never be won over. Arguably only Jeff Bridges, an American icon, has ever really been able to get away with that and win steady awards love. Ruffalo has yet to be nominated by either the Globes, the Oscars, SAG or the BAFTAs for anything. His only major awards run remains a small handful of critics citations for his debut You Can Count on Me (2000). It's not all bad news though. His performance in The Kids Are All Right was recently nominated at the Spirits and by the BFCA.

127 Hours -It didn't place in Best Director or in Best Picture. In terms of the awards race, has it morphed into the one man show (James Franco) that it looks like on the surface?

- We were pulling for a Best Actress Comedy/Musical honor because we know they don't perform the nominated songs. Get Cher back on that red carpet, damnit. This was the only place to do it really. You can never count on Oscar to let the nominated songs be performed as they should. So who knows what to expect even if "You Haven't Seen the Last of Me" gets shortlisted by Oscar. For all we know, the ageist Academy producers will ask Miley Cyrus to sing it.

Rabbit Hole  *just added* it's still only the Nicole Kidman show (but what a show that is), despite fine work from Aaron Eckhart and Dianne Wiest to either side of her.

True Grit -Zero nominations. Nada. Perhaps they didn't screen in time. Perhaps the HFPA just didn't bite... they've embraces Coen Bros pictures in the past, even more often than Oscar.

The Ghost Writer
-Zero nominations. The Roman Polanski film won some early honors overseas but has been ignored by the majority of American awards. Pity. Everyone has such short memories here in the US awards circuit... even the "Foreign Press"

How Do You Know - Zero nominations. The brand new James L Brooks comedy stars Reese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson, Jack Nicholson and Paul Rudd. Brooks and his cast have won 26 Globe nominations, 8 Globe statues and a Cecil B. DeMille between them. Why no love this time? It can't be the bad buzz. The Tourist, which has received an excruciating 20% critical approval on Rotten Tomatoes (and disappointing box office receipts!) won a Best Picture nomination.

Other rejected films: Mike Leigh's Another Year, Clint Eastwood's Hereafter (they often go for him), and the Robert Duvall period piece Get Low.

Finally, we think it's worth noting that in the very loosely defined Comedy/Musical Best Picture category  --they chose two action films Red & The Tourist, one eyesore Alice in Wonderland, one musical Burlesque and one dramedy The Kids are All Right -- any number of entirely snubbed films like Greenberg, Please Give, Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World or Made in Dagenham would have been far worthier choices than the first three category (and quality) definition-stretchers. The Globes are the only major organization that reaches out regularly to comedic-tilting films, so to screw up so badly, eschewing all traditional notions of quality, is a blunder; a real opportunity wasted.

The tragedy of that Comedy category -- does it actually hurt the wonderful Kids, this guilt-by-association effect? -- is something of a headscratcher in that within some years they do make a real effort to think about the comedy categories. Remember how acclaimed the bulk of that category was just two years ago?

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