The 75th Golden Globe Awards nominees were announced early this morning. While I didn't watch the ceremony as it occurred, I have kept up with the nominees after the fact, and there certainly is an interesting batch of films recognized by the HFPA. Some are surprising, some not so much. Today, I'm going to discuss some of the snubs and surprises with this years nominations.
Surprise: The Boss Baby
Really? The Boss Baby got a nomination for Best Motion Picture - Animated. Sure, this year gave us some critically panned failures like The Emoji Movie, and I haven't seen The Boss Baby, so it might be great. Still, it didn't look very good, and its reception was lukewarm. I'm not sure how this got onto the list over the supposedly much better Mary and the Witch's Flower (which I haven't seen either, I'm just going off what I have heard). I guess this is an example of how the HFPA often recognizes some of the more mainstream successes over quality films.
Snub: The Big Sick
Arguably one of the best films to come out of this year's Sundance Film Festival, The Big Sick is still among my favorite films of the year. It's hilarious, heartwarming, and well-made, and I'm not exactly sure how it got left out of the running. I could have seen this taking the place of the (still great, but more mainstream) The Disaster Artist in the race for Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy, and there could have been room for Holly Hunter in the Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture field. Maybe it's caused by a distaste for Amazon Studios having a major role in distribution of the film? Netflix got a few nods, but the only one in a major category was Mary J. Blige's nomination for Mudbound.
Surprise: Ansel Elgort, Baby Driver
Baby Driver, is (as of press time) still my favorite movie of the year so far. I think that it is wildly entertaining, witty, and extremely well-made. Still, I thought that much of its recognition would come in the below-the-line categories (Sound Mixing, Sound Editing), which aren't honored at the Golden Globes. It greatly surprised me to see Ansel Elgort nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy, and I'm happy that the HFPA chose to recognize this excellent film in some way.
Greta Gerwig wasn't nominated as a director for her work on Lady Bird. It was nominated for Best Motion Picture - Comedy, Best Actress (Lead and Supporting), and Best Screenplay - Motion Picture, but Gerwig still didn't get a director nod? I guess the field is tight this year, but I could have seen Gerwig taking the place of McDonagh. People are also criticizing the fact that Mudbound was shorted in most categories, but I think that is more of a statement against Netflix than the work of Dee Rees (I can't make a definitive statement because I still haven't seen it).
Surprise: The Greatest Showman
I was a little worried for The Greatest Showman. I knew that one of Pasek & Paul's songs for the soundtrack would be a lock given their wonderful music from last year's La La Land, and Hugh Jackman already proved himself in the lead role of a musical, but I was personally a little apprehensive about this film as a whole. It looked a little silly to me. Now, with three nominations total, I'm hoping that this means it is actually good and not another example of the HFPA making a weird choice like they did with The Tourist.
Snub: Phantom Thread
I have heard nothing but good things about Phantom Thread since its initial screenings. Still, there was no room for it in the Best Motion Picture - Drama or Best Director - Motion Picture races. It did get nods for Daniel Day Lewis's performance and the score, but is it representative of its Oscar hopes? I think not. I will only know for sure once I see it, but knowing P.T. Anderson, it will likely be a hit in the below-the-line categories and have a significant shot at Best Picture.
Surprise: All the Money in the World
I think that it is hilarious that Christopher Plummer got a nomination for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture. It seems to be a blatant statement in response to the ongoing sexual assault controversies. Ridley Scott's nomination also shows that he must have done a good job of rebuilding the film in less than a month. I'm excited to see it.
For the most part, I was pleased with the nominees for the 75th Golden Globe Awards. There were only a few nominations that made my scratch my head in confusion (The Boss Baby) and a few movies that were sadly left out (The Big Sick, Wind River). As the ceremony approaches and I have seen more of the nominees, I will be posting more coverage of the awards season, including my predictions for what and who will win.
I have decided to start writing a new series for the Big Tuna on Film Blog called "A Word on...", in which I will share my thoughts on a particular topic rather than a specific film. Sometimes it will take the form of a Top 5/10 list, sometimes it may be a Best/Worst of list, and sometimes it can take other forms. The topic for this entry is nepotism. While often more debated in politics, nepotism still occurs and can be an issue in Hollywood. Today, I will evaluate some of the more notable filmmakers in the industry that have considerable family influence in film.
Films Include: The Virgin Suicides, The Beguiled, Lost in Translation
Hollywood Connection: Francis Ford Coppola (father)
Sofia Coppola, daughter of film director Francis Ford Coppola of The Godfather fame, is likely one of the more established names that you are going to find on this list. She is right off of a win for Best Director at the Cannes Film Festival for The Beguiled, which I found to be a wonderful period piece (see my review here). Her filmography also includes such modern classics as Lost in Translation. In my opinion, she is beginning to establish herself as a contemporary auteur.
Films Include: Hearts of Darkness, Paris Can Wait
Hollywood Connection: Francis Ford Coppola (husband)
From the same family as the aforementioned Sofia, Eleanor Coppola first debuted with the documentary Hearts of Darkness, a behind-the-scenes look at one of her husband's films, Apocalypse Now. The documentary proved to be an effective chronicle of the filmmaking process that combined interviews and footage from the set (see my review here). Last year, her narrative debut Paris Can Wait toured the festival circuit before its release this summer. While some critics found it to be simple and underdeveloped, I found it to be a quite refreshing comedy (see my review here).
Films Include: Morgan
Hollywood Connection: Ridley Scott (father)
Luke Scott made his feature debut with 2016's Morgan, a film which I still have yet to see, but was met with general dislike from most. However, prior to this year's Alien: Covenant, a short film was released as a prologue to the film entitled Last Supper. I thought that this short film was quite good, but Ridley Scott's involvement is questionable. It's possible that that was more a work of his father than himself.
Films Include: Desierto
Hollywood Connection: Alfonso Cuarón (father)
Jonás Cuarón's first major film was Desierto, which was released a little under-the-radar in 2016 to mixed reviews. Still, it was submitted as Mexico's entry for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film and I found it to be a tense, well-crafted thriller (read my review here). Apart from that, his only other major credit is co-writing Gravity with his father, which I found to be a little overrated. Time will tell what else he can do.
Films Include: The Karate Kid, After Earth
Hollywood Connection: Will Smith (father)
The only actor that I chose to include on this list, Jaden Smith is known mostly for collaborations with his father. His breakout in The Pursuit of Happiness actually wasn't bad. It's his later work that took him into meme territory. I'm not sure if it's his acting that is that bad or if it's just the fact that he hasn't been given another semi-decent role, but he is often laughable.
I have decided to set another movie-watching goal for myself: I'm going to watch 31 horror or Halloween-themed films during the month of October. This includes other subgenres of horror too, like horror-comedies or action horror. In Halloween-themed films, I'm hoping to revisit some favorites, like "Charlie Brown and the Great Pumpkin" or "Hocus Pocus".
The rules are simple: I must watch 31 films that are horror films or themed around the holiday of Halloween. There is no particular way in which these films must be distributed, as long as I reach 31 by the end of the month. I can include films that I have seen before, however I can not include films that have already been reviewed on the website.
I think that is pretty much all I need to say! There are a lot of movies that I hope to watch through this challenge, from classics to films that are coming out in theaters. I hope you enjoy reading about my journey through the genre of horror. If you're not a fan of horror, that's okay, I will still continue to review other films outside of the challenge.
I have decided to switch to a letter-based grading system on my blog in order to allow more accuracy on my reviews. You can check out what each letter grade means and its equivalence to the Letterboxd rating system on the About page.
Thanks for Reading!,
I just wanted to give you guys an update on what is happening this weekend. I am going to "The Revenant" and I will also be attending a screening of "Jaws" on the big screen with a Q&A session afterwards with Richard Dreyfus, who portrays Hooper in the film. "Jaws" is one of my favorite movies of all time, and Hooper is in fact my favorite character, so I am really excited for this experience. I will be posting a review for "Jaws", but only a bit of it will be focused on the film itself. I will be talking more about the experience of seeing Richard Dreyfus and the experience of seeing "Jaws" on the big screen, since I was not alive when it was released (and I sadly was unable to attend the TCM screening this past summer).
I also wanted to let you guys know that other than these two films, I may have less film reviews going up because I am currently watching the Amazon Original Series "Mozart in the Jungle" and may also watch "The Man in the High Castle", but I still plan to keep up on my Ascendant Independents challenge.
Speaking of the Ascendant Independents challenge, I wanted to update you on how those reviews will be classified. Any movie that I see that is classified as an independent film using the following criteria:
1. Its budget is below $10 million and its distributor is classified by Wikipedia as a distributor of independent films.
2. It is classified by Netflix as an independent film.
3. It screened at Sundance or another major independent film festival.
4. I saw it at a theater that specifically shows independent films.
5. The film's budget is below $500,000.
Through the criteria, I am trying to eliminate any films that I wouldn't really consider independent, but some may slip in that were poorly classified by Netflix or the theater, and I'm sorry if that ends up being the case. Also, I wanted to let you know how these reviews will be tagged. I will tag all movies that I consider to be independent as "Ascendant Independents". The first independent movie that I watch in the week that I have never seen before will be tagged as both "Ascendant Independents" and "Ascendant Independents (Challenge)". I would like to remind you that I classify a week as Sunday to Saturday.
Thanks for hanging in with me,
I decided to revamp my blog this year because I have a little bit more publicity opportunity: the website Letterboxd. You can find me as bigtunalwhs on Letterboxd. On Letterboxd, I will give "teaser" reviews of a couple of sentences of each movie I see. On the blog, I am going to do some expanded reviews, and I'm going to do a couple of different columns too. Last year, my movie goal was to watch 100 different movies that received their non-festival release in 2015. I am at 110 right now, as of writing, which will go up as some of the ones I missed become available on DVD or the last few remaining 2015 movies expand near me in theaters. I have two movie goals this year, which will constitute my different columns:
1. I want to watch an Independent Film, preferably one that I haven't seen, a week. A week to me is Sunday to Saturday. I am not counting New Year's Day and January 2nd as a week. Most of these will come from Netflix. These will be tagged "Ascendant Independents".
2. I want to try to watch AT LEAST half of AFI's 10 Top 10 List in order to watch some of the movies considered the greatest ever made in their genres. At least 10 of these (hopefully) 50 or more will be ones that I have never seen before. (Off to the local library!) These will be tagged "AFI's 10 Top 10".
I will also be doing a bit of awards season coverage, trailer talk, and other news features like that. I hope that my blog proves really interesting to you, and may even encourage you to seek out some great films!
Looking forward to a great year!
I am a huge movie fan that wants to tell people about my very varying taste and opinion of film.
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