81st Golden Globe Awards: The Dominance of Barbenheimer


And the awards season is back!!! Usually, the awards season starts with the Golden Globes and concludes with the Oscars. This year, the 81st Golden Globes has started the awards season for what is considered to be one of the most turbulent years in the history of Hollywood following months of actors-writers’ strike.

The Golden Globes stands out as a prominent accolade, honoring outstanding achievements in both the film and television industries globally. Unlike the Emmys, which spotlight excellence in television, and the Academy Awards, which recognize talent in film, the Golden Globes uniquely celebrate both mediums. Its inception dates back to 1943 when Hollywood reporters, later forming the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), established the awards to commend excellence in filmmaking. In 1961, the Golden Globes expanded its purview to include television, marking a significant evolution in its legacy. However, this venerable institution faced challenges recently, prompting a necessary rebrand and reorganization. Criticisms, particularly concerning the lack of diversity within the HFPA’s membership, led to the association’s removal from the organization. This year, the Golden Globes returned with renewed vigor and a commitment to addressing past issues, reflecting its enduring legacy spanning over eight decades.This year the Barbenheimer phenomenon followed its way into Golden Globes as well. Oppenheimer swept a total of 5 out of 9 Drama awards: Best Motion Picture, Best Actor – Cillian Murphy, Best Supporting Actor – Robert Downey Jr., Best Director – Christopher Nolan, and Best Original Score – Ludwig Goransson. Christopher Nolan’s epic Historical Fiction Drama emerged as a clear favorite among critics, and this translated seamlessly onto the awards stage.

Simultaneously, Barbie clinched two awards at the ceremony. The wins encompassed the Best Original Song category for “What Was I Made For” and the newly introduced and somewhat controversial category of “Cinematic and Box Office Achievement”. “I have a personal beef with this specific category; why would a prestigious awards ceremony honor a film solely based on its box office success? Does financial success necessarily translate to technical brilliance? It seems like introducing this category could be part of the rebranding effort to lure A-list celebrities to the show”. This year’s nominations featured 2 Marvel films (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol; 3 and Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse), 4 franchise films (Barbie, Mission Impossible, John Wick, and Super Mario), and the true box office miracle Eras Tour (In my opinion the film nominated that should have won this award just because of the fact that a concert film without any major studio backing shook the global box office). The inclusion of such diverse nominees stirred up discussions and drew a significant number of eyeballs to the awards.Netflix’s heavily acclaimed limited series Beef swept major awards in the Limited Series, Anthology Series, or Motion Picture Made for Television category. “Beef” stands out as one of the most unique and intriguing series, delving deeply into the human psyche, particularly concerning the emotion of ego. The narrative unfolds around two Asian Americans who inadvertently initiate an ego-fueled clash through a seemingly mundane road rage incident. What ensues is a complete turnaround in their lives, unraveling a series of compelling events. It’s one of the best series to come out this year and it showcased the sheer brilliance of Steven Yeun and Ali Wong who were also awarded with Best Performance in a Limited Series, Anthology Series, or Motion Picture Made for Television. Additionally, other nominees such as “Fargo” and “Fellow Travellers” represent some of the finest TV productions to emerge in recent times, deserving acknowledgment in this context.

In the Television Series – Drama category, the highly acclaimed final season of “Succession” emerged triumphant, dominating the awards. The series secured Best Television Drama Series, along with individual honors for Matthew Macfadyen, who won Best Supporting Actor in a Television Series – Drama, Sarah Snook, awarded Best Actress in a Television Series – Drama, and Kieran Culkin, who took home the accolade for Best Actor in a Television Series – Drama. Culkin, expressing his elation for winning the Golden Globe after many years, shared a heartfelt anecdote about his initial disbelief. He concluded with a humorous jab at fellow nominee Pedro Pascal, who also notably contributed to the outstanding show “Last of Us” alongside Bella Ramsey. And for the final season of Crown, Elizabeth Debicki was awarded Best Supporting Actress in a TV Series Drama for her brilliant portrayal of Princess Diana, while the Royal Drama was nominated for Best Drama Series, Best Actor for Dominic West, and Best Actress for Imelda Staunton. Also, the Bear dominated the Best Television Series – Comedy category winning Best TV Series, Best Actor, and Best Actress.

One of the most important moments of this year’s award ceremony is that for the first time, a person of indigenous origins won a Golden Globe. Lily Gladstone won Best Actress for her portrayal of Mollie Burkhart in the movie Killers of the Flower Moon. This is considered to be an important feat in the history of the Golden Globes. Also, Lily Gladstone started her speech in her mother tongue which made her award much more special. Following RRR’s triumph in the Best Original Song category at last year’s Golden Globes, this year saw the French film “Anatomy of Fall” secure the award for Best Screenplay, surpassing contenders like Oppenheimer, Barbie, and Killers of the Flower Moon. “Anatomy of Fall” unfolds as an intimate tale, exploring the profound impact of a murder on a family, particularly focusing on a visually impaired child who becomes the sole witness to his father’s death, with his mother as the prime suspect. The film skillfully navigates the complexities of the justice system while delving into the psyche of characters grappling with the tragedy. This Drama/Thriller premiered at the 76th Cannes Film Festival and also clinched the award for Best Foreign Language Film.

In another intriguing category that caught many by surprise, the Japanese film “The Boy and the Heron” secured the Best Animated Motion Picture award. The recognition of this highly acclaimed Studio Ghibli production highlights the brilliance of Japanese creators. Also, it is noteworthy that another Japanese film “Suzume” was also nominated in the same category. A special shoutout is also due to one of the standout films of the year, “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.” Amidst superhero fatigue, this film provided a breath of fresh air with its inventive visual spectacle, earning it a special place among favorites. One of the significant disappointments from this year’s awards was the noticeable absence of accolades for Celine Song’s directorial venture, “Past Lives.” In my view, “Past Lives” stands out as one of the finest films of the year, offering a nuanced portrayal of relationships. Particularly commendable is its sensitive depiction of the often-overlooked figure in triangular relationship dramas—the other man. The film’s failure to secure any wins, despite earning five nominations, left me disheartened and somewhat puzzled, given its remarkable contributions to the cinematic landscape.In conclusion, this year’s award ceremony had its share of hits and misses, generally leaving most viewers satisfied. It marks just the beginning of the awards season, with the Emmys coming up next week and the highly anticipated Oscars to follow. It’s worth noting that last year, while “Fablemans” and “Banshees of Inisherin” claimed the Best Picture awards at the Golden Globes, they were overshadowed by “Everything Everywhere All at Once” at the Oscars. The unfolding award season promises more surprises, and we eagerly await to see how it all pans out.

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Rtr. Nitharshanan Sivabalasundaram
(Blog Team Member 2023-24)

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Amaan Thaha

An Amazing in-detail masterpiece on the event😍❤️🔥

Mandini Gabadage

Amazing! 🥺❤️