Golden Globes winners 2015

What just happened? For years we’ve mocked the Golden Globes as a joke, a drunken farce that leads into the last few weeks of Awards Season before the Oscars. The show is basically one last hootenanny, like New Years Eve for celebrities, before the Important Awards sweep in to codify all that is good and worthwhile from the previous calendar year. (Note: no awards actually codify anything.)

But something happened in 2015. The Golden Globes, especially when it came to awards for TV, did not appear to be decided entirely by self-congratulatory voters more interested in getting loaded with celebrities than in the actual films and shows. The film winners were almost entirely independents, and the TV winners were diverse both in who they represent, and the ways in which those stories are getting to audiences. A big win for Amazon’s Transparent isn’t just unexpected; it is a great step forward.

Now, instead of bringing attention to stuff like The Tourist, the Golden Globes suddenly look almost progressive. The problem is that some of the 2015 awards winners are still things audiences haven’t seen, for a variety of reasons. So here’s a guide to some of the lesser-known achievements the Globes highlighted this year. Read More »

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best foreign film shortlist 2015

The shortlist for potential Best Foreign Film Oscar nominees is out. As usual, the list is going to generate as much talk about what didn’t make the cut as it does about what ended up on the list. Many of the year’s most significant films were left off: Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s Winter Sleep, which was this year’s Palme d’Or winner at Cannes, didn’t make the cut. Nor did Mommy by Xavier Dolan, also a Cannes prize winner, taking the Jury Prize; or Kornel Mundruczo’s White God; or the Dardenne brothers’ Two Days One Night.

But the Best Foreign Film shortlist for 2015 does feature some great films, including Ida, from Pawel Pawlikowski and Force Majeure (above), from director Ruben Östlund. The full list is below. Read More »

Leviathan trailer

Russian director Andrey Zvyagintsev (The Return, Elena) made a big impression on Cannes audiences with Leviathan, and though it won only the Best Screenplay award rather than the Palme d’Or, the film remains one of the most anticipated winter releases thanks to the big Cannes buzz. Leviathan reworks the Book of Job as it charts a small-town battle between a family and local officials, and draws in themes of corruption, class, and oppression as the battle escalates. Watch the new Leviathan trailer below.

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