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Golden Globes Analysis – What went right? What went wrong? – AWARDS ALLEY

By Sean O’Connell
hollywoodnews.com: Nominations for the 69th annual Golden Globe Awards, revealed Thursday morning by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, confirmed that several talents running in the Oscar race should have their tuxedos and dresses picked out for next year’s big event.

Team “Artist” continued its successful run through the awards season, as Michel Hazanavicius’ black-and-white, silent comedy picked up a field-leading six nominations including Best Picture (Musical or Comedy). “The Descendants,” another favorite this season, was right behind with five. Both films should expect to be in the Best Picture discussion for next year’s Oscars, though this year is anything but a two-horse race.

Largely because other films – from “The Help” to “War Horse” – continue to gain support from the various critics’ groups as this process marches along. The HFPA, having to fill both comedic and dramatic categories, spread its love around … even more than the gracious Broadcast Film Critics’ Association and their noms for the Critics’ Choice Movie Awards.

“The Help” grabbed four Golden Globe nominations. “Midnight in Paris,” “Moneyball” and “The Ides of March” did, as well. (Man, the HFPA really wanted George Clooney in the room, didn’t they?) “Hugo” followed up with three.

But several films that had picked up steam from the Critics’ Choice Movie Awards nominations or the critics’ groups might have found themselves settling for acting awards now that the field is starting to settle. Some films might not receive anything at all.

– Stephen Daldry’s “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” was snubbed. So were “The Tree of Life,” “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy,” “Melancholia” and “Margin Call.”

– Elizabeth Olsen was shunned for “Martha Marcy May Marlene.” Felicity Jones was overlooked for “Like Crazy.” And Nick Nolte, who continues to build momentum for his “Warrior” performance, was left off the Globes ballot.

– “The Ides of March,” while excellent, is an out-of-left-field pick by the HFPA, which recognized Ryan Gosling for Clooney’s film but skipped him for “Drive.” Um, what?

– The largest snubs came in the Director category. Though the Globes can cheat and recognize 10 Best Picture candidates, they only can name 5 directors, and so Steven Spielberg (“War Horse”), Tate Taylor (“The Help”), Clint Eastwood (“J. Edgar”) and Bennett Miller (“Moneyball”) were on the outside looking in.

Where did the Globes get it right? Well …

– “The Artist” and “The Descendants” deserve the love. At this point, we’d all be shocked if both didn’t make the Best Picture cut at the Oscars.

– It’s clear that several choices were made to get famous stars into the audience for the televised event (call it the “Tourist” trap). While there’s nothing quite as egregious as Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie for that tepid comedy last year, the Globes did “invite” Kate Winslet and Jodie Foster for “Carnage,” a film that has fallen off people’s radars and isn’t expected to be an Oscar play.

– Lest you think the HFPA overlooked Angelina, you’ll notice that her film, “In the Land of Blood and Honey,” is in the Best Foreign Language category.

– I love the inclusion of Brendan Gleeson. If it convinces at least one more person to check out “The Guard,” it’s worth the nomination.

– Ditto Rooney Mara, who probably is the best part of David Fincher’s “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” (though in such a crowded field, someone must be upset that they’re not in the race).

– I think Glenn Close is closer to solidifying her Best Actress nomination.

– Ditto Tilda Swinton. And Michelle Williams. And, obviously, Meryl Streep! Geez, can we have more than 5 Best Actress nominees? This year, we need them.

But then again, as last year’s race taught us, these precursors don’t carry as much weight as we might hope. At this point last year, “The Social Network” still looked like the film to beat.

Then “The King’s Speech” beat it.

In the meantime, here are the actors, directors and films that will vie for Golden Globes when the trophies are handed out on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2012.

Best Picture
The Descendants
The Help
The Ides
War Horse

Best Picture Comedy or Musical
The Artist
Midnight IN Paris
My Week with Marilyn

Best Director
Woody Allen, Midnight In Paris
George Clooney, The Ides of March
Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
Alexander Payne, The Descendants
Martin Scorsese, Hugo

Best Actress, Drama
Glenn Close, Albert Nobbs
Viola Davis, The Help
Rooney Mara, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady
Tilda Swinton, We Need to Talk About Kevin

Best Actor, Drama
George Clooney, The Descendants
Leonardo DiCaprio, J Edgar
Michael Fassbender, Shame
Ryan Gosling, The Ides of March
Brad Pitt, Moneyball

Best Actress Comedy or Musical
Jodie Foster, Carnage
Charlize Theron, Young Adult
Kristen Wiig, Bridesmaids
Michelle Williams, My Week With Marilyn
Kate Winslet, Carnage

Best Actor Comedy or Musical
Jean Dujardin, The Artist
Brendan Gleeson, The Guard
Joseph Gordon Levitt, 50/50
Ryan Gosling, Crazy Stupid Love
Owen Wilson, Midnight in Paris

Best Actor Supporting
Kenneth Branagh, My Week with Marilyn
Albert Brooks, Drive
Jonah Hill, Moneyball
Viggo Mortensen, A Dangerous Method
Christopher Plummer, Beginners

Best Actress Supporting
Berenice Bejo, The Artist
Jessica Chastain , The Help
Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs
Octavia Spencer, The Help
Shailene Woodley, The Descendants
Best Actress Comedy or Musical

Best Foreign Language Film
A Separation (Iran)
The Flowers Of War (China)
The Kid With The Bike (Belgium)
In The Land Of Blood and Honey (USA)
The Skin I Live In (Spain)

Best Animated Feature
Arthur Christmas
Cars 2
Puss in Boots

Best Screenplay
Midnight in Paris, Woody Allen
The Ides of March, George Clooney, Grant Heslov, Beau Willimon
The Artist, Michel Hazanavicius
The Descendants, Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon and Jim Rash
Moneyball, Steven Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin

Best Score
The Artist, Ludovic Bource
W.E., Abel Korzeniowski
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross
Hugo, Howard Shore
War Horse, John Williams

Best Original Song
“Hello Hello” – “Gnomeo & Juliet – Elton John
“Lay Your Head Down” – “Albert Nobbs” – Sinead O’Connor
“The Living Proof” – “The Help” – Mary J. Blige
“The Keeper” – “Machine Gun Preacher” – Gerard Butler
“Masterpiece” – “W.E.” – Madonna

Awards Alley brings you the best Oscar coverage. Click below to read our exclusive interviews with:
Harvey Weinstein
– The cast of “The Artist.”
Sir Ben Kingsley and Chloe Grace Moretz for “Hugo.”
Tilda Swinton for “We Need to Talk About Kevin.”
Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer for “The Help.”
Gary Oldman and Colin Firth for “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.”
Charlize Theron, Patton Oswalt, Jason Reitman and Diablo Cody for “Young Adult.”
Steve McQueen for “Shame.”
Glenn Close for “Albert Nobbs.”
Seth Rogen and Will Reiser for “50/50.”

For complete Oscar and Film Festival coverage, visit our Awards Alley for the latest news items, reviews and interviews all season long.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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