For the most part, awards shows don’t matter. You probably won’t find anyone who disputes that. That being said, I’m not afraid to admit that I love awards shows. I really, really do. And while I’m at Blair and can’t really watch them live anymore, as I grew so did my love of television and movies. With the announcement of the Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe award nominations that came this week, 2016 awards season is officially in swing.
In this article I’m going to talk about the Golden Globes and their biggest categories in film and TV nominations (picture, animated film, director, and writer for film; series and lead actor and actress in a drama for TV) and offer my predictions for what will win, and what I think should win. So check out the list of nominees here and then keep reading for my thoughts.
– FILM CATEGORIES –
Drama – Will Win: The Revenant
Alejandro G. Iñárritu essentially swept last year’s awards season with the (in my opinion) highly overrated Birdman. With extraordinarily positive early reviews for The Revenant (starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hardy) rolling in, he looks pretty poised to take the top film prize again. Even if it doesn’t turn out to be as good as critics say, the Birdman boost will probably help.
Drama – Should Win: Mad Max: Fury Road -or- Spotlight
Who would have thought a post-apocalyptic desert road-race movie would turn out to be one of the highlights of not just the summer movie season, but the entire year? Mad Max: Fury Road had no right being as good or as deep as it was. Spotlight is probably the more safe “should-win” pick, as a clearly Oscar-bait movie about recent history with a starry cast– and it was also excellent and could also be a dark-horse contender.
Comedy – Will Win: The Martian OR Joy
Joy might have a leg up here because of its status as a David O. Russell film, starring Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper, all three of whom are critical and popular darlings. Early reviews have been mixed, though, so Ridley Scott and The Martian could come out on top.
Comedy – Should Win: The Martian
My feelings about The Martian being submitted as a comedy notwithstanding, it’s the best film on the list, one of my personal favorites of the year, and easily Ridley Scott’s best film in years– dare I say, since even Alien, which was released in 1979.
Animated – Will Win: Inside Out
Animated – Should Win: Inside Out
Inside Out is one of the best movies of the year, animated or not. After a few iffy films, Pixar really returned to form here and I’ll be shocked and dismayed if it loses to any other film on the list.
Director – Will Win: Alejandro G. Iñárritu for The Revenant OR Ridley Scott for The Martian
Iñárritu should still be coasting on Birdman cleaning up last year. But Ridley Scott finally made another excellent movie, so winning for The Martian could be a cap on what will hopefully become a renaissance for him.
Director – Should Win: George Miller for Mad Max: Fury Road
One of the best choices that the Mad Max producers made was bringing back Miller, the director of the original trilogy starring Mel Gibson as the titular Max Rockatansky. Miller’s talent has not waned with age, as he handles Fury Road so deftly he could easily be this category’s dark horse nominee.
Writer – Will Win: Aaron Sorkin for Steve Jobs
Writer – Should Win: Aaron Sorkin for Steve Jobs
It’s Aaron Sorkin. While not everyone likes the way he writes, I love it and he more than deserves it.
– TELEVISION CATEGORIES –
Drama – Will Win: Game of Thrones
Disclaimer: I don’t watch Game of Thrones. But, it finally won the Emmy for best drama earlier this fall and that success will probably lead them to a victory here.
Drama – Should Win: Mr. Robot
Mr. Robot is easily the best series that USA Network has ever made. Not even mentioning how topical its premise (hacktivist Robin Hoods trying to take down a huge multinational corporation) or Rami Malek’s outstanding (and nominated) lead performance, it is beautifully shot, written, and directed. It deserves the award more than any other series nominated.
Comedy – Will Win: Veep
Much like Game of Thrones, Veep won the Emmy for best comedy series this past fall, which is what this decision is mostly basing itself on.
Comedy – Should Win: Silicon Valley
Silicon Valley is one of the funniest shows I’ve ever seen. I didn’t expect it to win an Emmy but was disappointed when it didn’t, and I expect the same to happen here.
Lead Actor in a Drama – Will Win: Jon Hamm as Don Draper, Mad Men
Being that he already won the Emmy, is the most obvious choice. Mad Men has been consistently hailed as one of the best TV shows of the 21st century thus far, and Hamm gives a swan song of a performance in the final season. Expect him to walk away with some hardware.
Lead Actor in a Drama – Should Win: Rami Malek as Elliot Alderson, Mr. Robot OR Bob Odenkirk as Jimmy McGill in Better Call Saul
Like I wrote above in saying why Mr. Robot should win best series, Rami Malek gives my favorite performance of the year in all of television (barring maybe Mads Mikkelsen in Hannibal, but that’s another story), and I’d be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge how realistically he portrays mental illness and drug addiction. On the other hand, Bob Odenkirk, known mostly for comedy until Breaking Bad, does such an extraordinary job of character development, setting the stage for the kind of man that Saul Goodman (real name: James M. McGill) will become years later. I usually hate spin-offs, but this one is excellent. (Plus, Odenkirk won the Critic’s Choice Award this year, so he could definitely make an upset here.)
Lead Actress in a Drama – Will Win: Taraji P. Henson as Cookie Lyon, Empire
This one is simple. Empire is the best network drama airing today. This is Henson’s award to win and I daresay she won’t be challenged.
Lead Actress in a Drama – Should Win: Eva Green as Vanessa Ives, Penny Dreadful
I’ve got a soft spot for Eva Green. Like most, her role as Vesper Lynd in Casino Royale put her on my radar, but I stayed and have been rooting for her because with all of her talent, you would think she’d have gained more recognition. I don’t expect it to be her year to win for Penny Dreadful, but I’d love to be surprised.
(Copyright 2015 Sadie Britton) This article is the first in a series by Oracle Arts & Culture writer Sadie Britton examining the 2015-16 film and television awards contenders.