There are two significant omissions among the Broadcast Film Critics Association‘s nominees, which were announced this morning. One, Albert Nobbs‘ Glenn Close wasn’t nominated for Best Actress despite there being six slots. And two, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy‘s Gary Oldman was given the go-by for Best Actor. BFCA picks have generally tended to reflect default preferences among the schmoozy guild and Academy set, so this may (I say “may”) be cause for concern among the Close and Oldman camps.
All along the unspoken Close-for-Best-Actress argument has been “even if you’re not knocked out by her Albert Nobbs performance, you can’t deny that her acting over the last 30 years warrants a career-tribute salute.” But during yesterday’s Oscar Poker podcast (which hasn’t yet posted) I asked whether that rationale or equation might be wearing thin against competitors whose performances are knocking people out, in and of themselves. The SAG nominations later this week will either follow the BFCA glide path or countermand it.
I don’t get the Oldman blow-off. There’s serious admiration and respect out there for his George Smiley performance, and he sure as hell delivers in a more subtle and layered fashion way than the nominated Jean Dujardin does in The Artist . The BFCA ballot, which I filled out last weekend, only asks for three nominees in each category, so obviously most people…okay, I submitted Brad Pitt, George Clooney and Michael Fassbender in those slots. I know, I know: I fucked up. I should have ranked Oldman after Pitt and Clooney — I loved Fasssbender’s Jane Eyre performance, but his Shame guy is too glacial and impassive — but I let my Zelig impulse carry me away. Not a proud moment.
The Artist and Hugo garnered 11 nominations each. People voting to support the latest by dear, beloved Martin Scorsese — keeper of the cineaste flame — is understandable despite 75% of Hugo being a mostly tedious sit. But support for The Artist is pure Zelig thinking — a vote for pleasantness and taking the easy schmoozy way out and sparkling, silver-toned good vibes. It’s cool that Drive landed eight nominations, and a bit curious that The Help got eight also.
The BFCA also denied The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo‘s Rooney Mara a deserved Best Actress nomination, and gave the film itself only two minor nominations — Best Score and Best Editing. My guess is that the BFCA was responding to Sony’s strict review embargo on some level. They were saying, “We get it — you guys don’t see this film as an awards contender and that’s fine.” But they were wrong, I feel, to throw out Mara with the bathwater.
Kris Tapley and I both heard from guys who caught an early peek at Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close and proclaimed that Max Von Sydow was a slamdunk lock for Best Supporting Actor. (Here‘s my post.) Except Von Sydow didn’t even get nominated by the BFCA. Those two guys have some splainin’ to do.
That said, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close did manage nominations for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Young Actor/Actress.