2012 Golden Globe Predictions: Part Two

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As a movie awards guy, right now is perhaps the most exciting time of the year. Though the lists of potential nominees and possible winners have pretty much all revealed themselves, most races have yet to anoint any official frontrunners. This twilight of the gold won't last much longer, however, once the Golden Globes are handed out this Sunday (and tonight's Critics' Choice Awards, a B-level awards show, will also play a role). And so, before everyone starts their engines, I figured I'd take my own stab at predicting who'll take home the gold in the movie categories at Sunday's Globe ceremonies. (A full list of nominees can be foundhere.)

I'm hard-pressed to name a single masterpiece in the Best Picture: Drama race, although bothThe DescendantsandMoneyballlanded on my year-end top 10 list. I'll give the edge toward the smartDescendants, though the more popularThe Help, whose momentum has never abated since its August release, could easily sweep in and take the prize. As for the Best Picture: Comedy or Musical race, I'm going to lean on my year-end No. 1 and sayThe Artisthas this one sewn up (as well as a win for Michel Hazanavicius as Best Director); this is the kind of traditional, accessible film Hollywood Foreign Press voters love.The Artiststar Jean Dujardin andMy Week with Marilynlead Michelle Williams will likely win for Best Actor and Actress in a Comedy or Musical, respectively.

In the supporting races, my guess is thatThe Helpwill land a win for Octavia Spencer, heretofore an unknown character actor, as Best Supporting Actress (unlike lead roles, the supporting race combines comedic and dramatic roles at the Globes). Meanwhile, living legend Christopher Plummer should edge outDrive's Albert Brooks to walk away with the Supporting Actor statuette for his sensitive work inBeginners(as well as recognizing a brilliant half-century-long career).

Brad Pitt, a previous winner 16 years ago forTwelve Monkeys, will likely win again for Best Actor in a Drama forMoneyball(though I'd prefer Michael Fassbender inShame). But of all the races, it's the Best Lead Actress in a Drama that I find the most interesting. Virtually any of this year's slate can win. All year long I had thought that the long under-awarded Glenn Close would finally win forAlbert Nobbs, but that quiet film has failed to gain any traction (Close is also nominated as co-writer of the film's beautiful theme song, "Lay Your Head Down.") Conventional wisdom has this as a two-woman race between the wonderful Viola Davis inThe Helpand Meryl Streep as Margaret Thatcher inThe Iron Lady. Could Streep win a record-extending eighth Globe? Significantly, this would then put her on the path to finally win a third Oscar next month (of her generation, only Jack Nicholson can boast the same accomplishment).Davis(whose big movie breakout role was opposite Streep inDoubt), meanwhile, stars in a more popular film, and has been campaigning heavily. I lean towards a Streep victory, but I think this race will continue to be this award season's most exciting story.

One last thing to look out for: Madonna has another Best Song nomination for "Masterpiece," fromW.E., her directorial debut. Though she has five previous Golden Globe nods in this category, she's never won one-and none of these nominations has led her to an Oscar nod either. Neither will "Masterpiece," which the Academy has ruled ineligible (because the song appears more than one minute into the movie's closing credits). Might that prompt a Globe win instead? Stay tuned. (Fun fact: The last time Madonna and Glenn Close competed against each other was 15 years ago-and Madge won.)

What do you guys think about this year's crop of nominees? Who do you think will and should win?

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