The Golden Globes: What Was and What Should’ve Been

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Written by Bryce Waller

I always have to argue with myself over whether or not to watch award shows honoring performances in film/television. I argued with myself for a good five minutes last night around 6:55p.m. (central time zone)about whether I should watch the Golden Globes.

I have so many things I would/could be doing during that time: Netflix, Chuck Palahniuk book, my wife, etc… but I ultimately decided to watch the Golden Globes.

The shows are usually fun as they often poke fun at actors and actresses throughout the show, I get to watch some of my favorite artists honored with awards, and I get to laugh at those who lose and the disappointment and despair is all over their face. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are funny for the most part and they did a good job with it last night.

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The thing I hate about award shows is how movies that are far more superior often get passed over for awards because of several reasons, politics mostly. There were several categories where there were obvious movies absent from the nominations list. I was pleased overall with the winners, not that it matters or changes anything if I was not pleased, but I would like to take this time to point out some obvious absentees from the ballots, as well as some wins that were spot on.

*I did not see all the films in the “Best Foreign Language Film” group, so I won’t be commenting on that list.

Best Picture, Drama: 12 Years a Slave

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I thought this win was excellent. 12 Years a Slave terrorized me throughout the entire film, but I was thankful for that experience once I left the theatre. Will I watch it again? Doubtful, but I won’t soon be forgetting anything about that film. Steve McQueen captured real human emotion and suffering with every prolonged shot throughout the film.

I was disappointed with this category for not having nominated Prisoners. Prisoners set a tone at the very beginning of the film that sucked in audiences and never let them go. The movie was almost three hours long, but I felt like I was in the theatre for ten minutes. Great movies can transport an audience like that, and it does not happen very often any more. I would like have liked Prisoners to replace Captain Phillips or Rush on this list but we don’t always get what we want.

Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Drama: Cate Blanchett

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I have one or two that will read this and understand my love for Woody Allen films; which is why I was very happy Cate Blanchett got the win here for her role in Blue Jasmine. Although, I think it could have just as easily gone to Sandra Bullock for Gravity or Emma Thompson for Saving Mr. Banks.

I have not seen Labor Day yet (although I would like to), so I cannot speak to Winslet’s performance in that particular film. One more reason I was happy that Blanchett won was her acceptance speech. That woman is funny. She has been in some of my favorite films of the past 10-15 years, and it is nice to see real talent honored.

Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Drama: Matthew McConaughey

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Personally, I could not have been happier for McConaughey when they announced his name as the winner for this award due to Dallas Buyers Club. I think he gets crapped on a little too much in the film community, mainly because he won’t change his accent…but who wants him to? No one! His film choices continue to get better and better, and Interstellar is my most anticipated film of 2014. Congrats Matt!

I also believe that Chiwetel Ejiofor could have won this award for 12 Years a Slave. His performance in that film was powerful and memorable.

Best Motion Picture, Musical/Comedy: American Hustle

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OK, this was, perhaps, my biggest disappointment of the night. Don’t get me wrong, I thought American Hustle was good, but I know Her was GREAT! David O. Russell is a talented director (Silver Linings Playbook was one of the best films of 2013, if not the best) but American Hustle was a step back in my opinion. The cast was incredible and the story was interesting, but the tone of this film never felt right.

Her, on the other hand, was close to perfection. It had compelling story, it was funny, the acting was amazing, and Spike Jonze is a superhero.

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I was so moved by this movie from beginning to end in a way that has stayed with me long after the movie was finished. There was real emotion and pain in the characters and as an audience member you felt it. That kind of experience is rewarding and it makes you want more.

Her as the reason Hollywood, in my opinion, is declining. Her sets the hypothetical bar so high that other directors just can’t replicate its success, and ultimately fall so short of hitting any kind of emotional mark in its audience.

Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy: Amy Adams

Amy Adams was in so many movies this year, you just knew she was going to win for something, and she deserved it. She was great in American Hustle and carried several scenes in the movie. It’s hard to believe anyone could ever beat out Meryl Streep (who was nominated for August: Osage County) but it happened this year.

Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy: Leonardo DiCaprio

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I am happy for Leo, but I think this could have gone to any of the five men nominated for this category. Every single one of them put in such an amazing performance. It would have been to accept voting for just one person in this category. Congratulations to everyone nominated, and to Leo for winning.

Best Animated Feature Film: Frozen

I sorta, kinda had issues with this award. Frozen, at its best, was just okay. In my humble opinion, Croods was a much better film. Disney phoned it in with Frozen. The basic premise behind the story has been done and the music in a Disney film was forgettable!

Croods was funny, the story was interesting, and the graphics were incredible. Maybe next year something awesome will win!

Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture: Jennifer Lawrence

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Lawrence has been labeled a “national treasure” by critics and audiences alike, and I believe that statement to be TRUE! She is so much fun to watch and she delivered a great performance in this film. She played the role of a spoiled, ditsy, housewife so well it was scary. She is always at her best when she works with Russell.

Lupita Nyong’o’s performance in 12 Years a Slave will be remembered as the moment she “made it” in Hollywood. Her character, Patsey, was a driving force behind much of the film, and she was perfect. This is the first time I’d ever seen her on the big screen, and I hope I get to see her more often from here on out. She will have her share of awards soon enough!

Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture: Jared Leto

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For his role in the film Dallas Buyers Club. The problem with this winner was Leto wasn’t acting. Most of the footage used in the film was borrowed from TMZ. He is actually an AIDS positive transgender woman. Needless to say, I do not like Leto all that much.

Second, MICHAEL FASSBENDER SHOULD HAVE BEEN THE ONLY PERSON ON THE BALLOT FOR THIS CATEGORY. He showd upz and brung it on the set of 12 Years a Slave. I hated him after the movie was over, but I friggin loved him all the more at the same time. When the entire audience can hate someone so completely at the same time, they deserve award after award for their performance.

Fassbender was ROBBED last night.

I will never know critics and voters obsession with Jared Leto, and I don’t think I want to.

Best Director of a Motion Picture: Alfonso Cuarón

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Gravity was terrifying and intense from the start of the film until the end. And even then you just knew some shark or something was going to jump out and eat Sandra Bullock. Cuarón sincerely discouraged me from ever wanting to go to space. Thank you for crushing that childhood dream. Fo realz doe, Gravity was excellent and you can’t be mad that Cuarón won it over McQueen. Both men deserved the award though.

Best Screenplay for a Motion Picture: Spike Jonze

YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Best Original Score for a Motion Picture: Alex Ebert

All is Lost was a film I did not have the pleasure of seeing. Its limited release and my location did not help the situation, but I heard only good things about the film. I did get to listen to the score of the film and Ebert did an incredible job. I loved his acceptance speech!

Best Original Song for a Motion Picture: “Ordinary Love” by U2

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Featured in the film Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom. I can’t help but think this winner was a political move. U2 has been putting out the same crap for longer than I have been alive, and I am not even sure this song was original. I think they recycled it from the 1970s and no one noticed.

I love me some Idris Elba, and I am happy he is getting recognition for his role as Nelson Mandela, but this song was lame. In my opinion, Please Mr. Kennedy from Inside Llewyn Davis was much better.

And that concludes my awards summary. Like it, love it, hate it, it’s whatever you want. Overall, the awards probably went to the people who deserved them, but Hollywood will always let you down in some small way.

...Or a big way.

…Or a big way.

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