The 10 Biggest Snubs, Surprises and Subplots of the 69th Golden Globes Nominations

Still reeling from this week's installment of Oscar index, Movieline's Institute for the Advanced Study of Kudos Forensics has had a rare Thursday open for business. Blame the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the shadowy swag goblins behind today's predictably headscratching slate of snubs, surprises and subplots also known as the 69th Golden Globe nominations. So far the Institute has chosen 10 worth investigating, but feel free to weigh in with your own as well:

SUBPLOT: Is The Ides of March for real?

George Clooney's fine political drama bowed strongly but perhaps prematurely in the awards race, eventually ceding its early front-runner terrain to the likes of The Help and Hugo. (I can't believe I just wrote that sentence.) Its dormancy extended through virtually every awards announcement before today, when it collected four nominations, including Best Picture - Drama, Best Director, Best Actor - Drama (Ryan Gosling), and Best Screenplay. What are we to think, and how much influence do we really want to ascribe to a pliant, star-fucking awards bloc that added an extra nomination in the Drama category just to make sure its bases were covered?

I still think it's toast overall -- not enough first-place votes to sneak it into the Academy's Best Picture consciousness, and it doesn't stand a chance going up against Fox Searchlight's Tree of Life campaign. "But," one may ask, "where's Tree of Life at the Globes?" Easy: Brad Pitt is at the Moneyball table, and Jessica Chastain is at The Help table. That's all the HFPA cares about. The Academy has slightly different standards -- but only slightly. So we'll see.

SNUB: Melissa McCarthy

The Bridesmaids scene-stealer's omission wouldn't seem so conspicuous were it not for her surge over the last week and the film itself earning two nominations in Best Picture - Musical/Comedy and Actress - Musical/Comedy. I can't even legitimately float the thought that NBC -- which broadcasts the Globes -- pushed for recognition of its SNL star over CBS's Mike and Molly star; after all, NBC Universal released Bridesmaids. What's an awards conspiracy theorist to do? Anyway, Academy tastes will settle this in a month, and I for one can totally wait.

SUBPLOT: The Weinstein Factor

On the one hand, TWC led all individual distributors with 12 nominations; Harvey took full advantage of the split categories in Picture and Actress, moving Michelle Williams in for the Musical/Comedy kill. That's ridiculous by any standard but the HFPA's and, well, Harvey's. But at the end of the day, when Williams wins, it's only small print on the DVD box. On the other hand...

SUBPLOT: The Sony Factor

Particularly apropos of Ides, I'm just going to throw this stat out there for your consideration of how Golden Globes sausage is made: Sony subsidiaries -- including Columbia Pictures and Sony Classics -- combined for 22 out of 71 nominations on the film side. Think about it: Almost every third nominee -- 31 percent -- is a Sony product, or at least one acquired and branded by Sony. Do what you will with that.

SNUB: Uggie

What has four legs, 2,000 supporters and apparently can't be budged -- even by Harvey Weinstein? [Insert a long, lusty "BOOOOOO" here.]

SURPRISE: Ryan Gosling

You know what? I think it's great that Gosling got in for Crazy Stupid Love. That's what the Musical/Comedy category is there for (even if technically he's supporting Steve Carell, but that's the last objection I'm going to raise to this crop of nominees), and he and Emma Stone arguably account for the entire soul of that movie. Good luck, Gos! That said, why ya gotta go all ninja-like on...

SNUB: Gary Oldman

Brutal. Absolutely brutal. But despite incredible early critical and commercial interest, the guy can't buy a break at the Critics Choice Awards, the Globes, or even with his own freaking union. And while I don't see Gosling carrying his Ides citation over to the Academy, Oldman still has Michael Shannon and Demi&aacuten Bichir to fight off for the fifth slot. It could happen, but as downswings go, this is pretty bad. I mean, even Woody Harrelson got to plug Rampart this morning during the nominations announcement.

SUBPLOT: Extremely Loud & Incredibly Finished

Maybe there's something I'm missing about The Daldry, but to expand the Best Picture - Drama category and not include this seems like a sizable red flag. In any case, it's a serious statistical disadvantage: The only film to win the Oscar for Best Picture without even being nominated for the Golden Globes' Best Picture - Drama award was Crash in 2006. (The Sting did it without a Musical/Comedy nod back in 1974.) Simply drawing a Best Picture Oscar nomination under such circumstances is a little easier, but not much: Milk did it in 2009, preceded by Lost in Translation in 2004, and then The Sixth Sense in 2000. Not good.

SNUB: Nick Nolte

This is probably the Globes snub with the least likelihood of reflecting in the Oscar nominations: Nolte's SAG recognition should even out Mortensen's mysterious Sony bump soon enough. No offense to Viggo, either, who's one of the few bright spots of A Dangerous Method; I just have a feeling that his nomination here will just rally Team Nolte.

SURPRISE: Rooney Mara

Yay! Someone was listening! Or maybe the HFPA is just fundamentally opposed to nominating an Olsen. It's not like Mary-Kate or Ashley ever made the cut, right? Coincidence? OK, don't answer that.

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  • AS says:

    Loving the Bridesmaids snub, can't stand that flick. Oh, and stop it already with Nick Nolte! He was very good in a very average movie. Not worthy of a nomination.

  • Anna says:

    So sad to see Oldman getting left off, again! I don't think Gosling stole his spot however. I don't think he's doing the rounds this time around is he? I haven't seen him around for screenings since Toronto... If it's up to me I wouldn't have nominated Leo. He is good but was a miscast, and his movie has a lot of problems making it almost unbearable.

  • waynebeau says:

    This kind of article is worthless unless the writer indicates just exactly who or what they would eliminate to accomodate those they considered worthy but snubbed.

  • Charles says:

    Oh man, not even a nomination for Gary Oldman? I told you guys he'd get a vicious prick up the ears at awards time. And there's the symbolic Michael Fassbender nod to prove it!
    On a side note, can the media folk who are calling "The Artist" gimmicky claptrap -- without even having seen it, mind you -- just give it a rest? This is the movie pretentious snobs like me are most looking forward to seeing at the moment, thank you.