Welcome to 2019! The movie discourse has already begun with the Golden Globe Awards from last night. There is clearly some controversy here, but really that is the point. For me, I was pleasantly surprised to see Glenn Close win for Best Actress in a Drama. She surprised most who thought Lady Gaga was going to win, including herself I think from her reaction. I have not seen The Wife but it is on my list. I won’t revisit the poor categories here and the films that were missed for consideration by the Globes. Still with the choices they had, they made some surprises elsewhere. Regina King winning for Best Supporting Actress in If Beale Street Could Talk. Another film that I need to see. I had thought one of Supporting women in The Favourite would been victorious. But it was not to be. I think that King’s performance merited this award.
Rami Malek as rock icon Freddie Mercury was the reason to see that film. Was it the best performance for an actor in the year? Not from what I have seen. And many others that I have not seen. Despite the value here, I can say without any hesitation that Bohemian Rhapsody was not the best dramatic film of the year. It simply isn’t. There are better stories. Better writing. Better everything. A watered down version of the life of Freddie Mercury through the eyes of the surviving members of the band (who now race to head out on tour to capitalize on this new momentum). Call yourself Queen. Sing the words. But the music died with Freddie. Cristian Bale and Olivia Colman winning were solid victories. I need to see Vice. Not sure just how good it is. American politics played out by actors for living people left. So the awards are given. Sandra Oh and Andy Sandburg were not funny and the bits they tried to use for laughs didn’t work, like trying to give flu shots to the stars. The look of Willem Dafoe as they tried to roll up his sleeve was priceless. Sharing needles likely is not really something to be encouraged by the media. I really liked the Carol Burnett Award, and her speech as its first justified recipient. She made good points about how television has changed since her days with Tim Conway, Harvey Korman and Vicki Lawrence. She is a class act, and deserves to have others in television be recognized for their contribution to the medium. Anyway, a strange night with strange nominees for categories that didn’t really match what was on screen. Let’s see what Oscar chooses to do and I will remain hopeful it makes better choices all around.
For my movie I will review Tag, which was a panned and moronic film inspired by a true story. Seems some friends (10) play a game of Tag with one another as adults and have been since being kids. The film has Jon Hamm, Jeremy Renner, Isla Fisher (who I really like) and the dentist from The Hangover. Not a bad cast. But the film goes horribly wrong by the methods employed by the Renner character to avoid getting tagged. And there are extreme actions taken to get help on finding a character – for example, threatening waterboarding and actually tying up the person and putting a cloth over their face. Then there is a faked pregnancy and miscarriage which is in very bad taste. They go too far for a film concept that doesn’t merit a full length feature with the stars involved. Needless to say I can not recommend and I wouldn’t waste your time with it.
Finally a quick thought or two about Paddington which is on Netflix. It is a real life version with a Ted-like bear (however nowhere near as vulgar (and fun) as Ted). The story follows what I can remember as a kid about the young bear who loves marmalade and gets into trouble just by carelessness mostly. He has a family that takes him in from the train station. Dad is the Dad from Downton Abbey, and his Wife is the deaf lady cleaner from Shape of Water. It is harmless. It is decent. It isn’t particularly memorable as saw it and forgot almost just as quickly.