Reactions to the 69th Golden Globes Nominations

Early this morning, a handful of Hollywood stars unveiled the nominations for the 69th annual Golden Globes. There were plenty of surprises, but also lots of predictable kudos handed out to some of the best films, TV shows, actors, writers and directors in the business. Below, for your reading pleasure, are a few thoughts on the nominations, from Best Supporting Actress to Best Picture and everything in between:

Best Actor: Comedy/Muscial 

A category the Academy Awards could really use, the Golden Globes spotlight a few performances you shouldn’t expect to carry over to the big ceremony next year. A surprise nom for Brendan Gleeson in Sundance favorite The Guard stands out among Hollywood’s freshest faces. But the clear frontrunner (and if I had to guess, winner of this award) is Jean Dujardin for The Artist, a charming international favorite which should have no problem sweeping this year’s Globes.

Ryan GoslingBest Supporting Actress

The big shock here is the absence of Bridesmaids breakout Melissa McCarthy, who many believe can still pull through to nab an Oscar nomination. Janet McTeer has been gaining buzz in Albert Nobbs, a movie that was supposed to be all about lead Glenn Close, but Bérénice Bejo or Octavia Spencer are likely to take this one home.

Best Actor Drama

The George Clooney/Ryan Gosling political drama The Ides of March had all but faded away until today’s nominations, but leave it to the Hollywood Foreign Press to revive a star-driven prestige flick. Gosling sneaks in to the Best Actor race thanks to comfort room provided by “Best Actor: Comedy,” but expect Dujardin of The Artist to take his place come Oscar time. If I had to guess right now, I’d say it’s Clooney’s to win for The Descendants.

Best Motion Picture: Comedy/Musical

There have been whispers that My Week With Marilyn producer Harvey Weinstein demanded songs written for the film just so the movie could eventually be considered for this category and, lo and behold, there it is. Sad not to see Crazy, Stupid, Love make it into this mix, but this year’s race was packed. Expect another Artist win in this category, unless the Foreign Press is especially high on Woody Allen.

Best Supporting Actor

Most of the Oscar frontrunners solidified themselves in this category: Branagh in Marilyn, Plummer in Beginners and even Brooks in Drive. Hill has his chances in the final race, but one I don’t expect to see is Mortensen, even though his role as Sigmund Freud in A Dangerous Method is exceptional and award-worthy. This category feels like one of the award show’s wild cards.

Best Director

Steven Spielberg didn’t have the oomph to ride War Horse to the Director competition, with plenty of auteurs already duking it out for top honors. Scorsese, Allen and Payne are vets and Clooney looks great on a ballot, but the love for The Artist has no bounds and Hazanavicius will probably pick this award up (along with everything else).

Best Actress Drama

Once again, thanks to the separating of Comedy and Drama, a few women who likely won’t make it to the end game have their moment in the spotlight. Tilda Swinton got a much deserved bump with her nomination for the riveting We Need to Talk About Kevin and Glenn Close, an early frontrunner who’s fallen to the wayside as of late, is back in the running. But who are we kidding, this is the Hollywood celebrity-loving HFPA—this one should just be mailed to Meryl Streep in advance.

My Week with Marilyn Michelle WilliamsBest Actress Comedy

This will not be the last time you hear me sing the praises of Charlize Theron in Young Adult, who gives (hands down) my favorite performance of the year. But it’s bitter and crude, not exactly digestible by HFPA historical standards, and the more likely candidate for winner is Michelle Williams, for her complex performance of former Hollywood starlet Marilyn Monroe. It’s a classic awards fare.

Best Motion Picture: Drama

With The Artist separated from the pack, the drama category becomes another question mark. Without a nomination for Spielberg in the director’s category, a War Horse win seems unlikely. The Ides of March keeps popping up and The Help nabbed a sizable portion of acting nods, but in the end, Hugo might take home the glory. It has the perfect combo: a famed director, a classic Hollywood feel and film-lovers message. It’s kind of like The Artist, but not. A perfect reason for HFPA to vote for it.