The Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song in a Motion Picture. Critics' opinion vs popular choice.

I don't watch many awards shows. I only watch those with Taylor Swift on (you know, I'm a big fan of her); most of the times music shows. This is the first time I've seen a film awards show live. Well there must be something there for me isn't it? Taylor is again nominated for Best Original Song. Given she's only an occasional actress, being nominated for a Golden Globe for a song/score category is a big deal and I'm quite interested.

The nominees for Best Original Song in a Motion Picture are:
Atlas, from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire;
Let It Go, from Frozen;
Ordinary Love, from Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom;
Please Mr. Kennedy, from Inside Llewyn Davis;
Sweeter Than Fiction, from One Chance.

And the winner is, Ordinary Love, from Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.

Quite deserving, I guessed. After all just looking at the nominees, not just the songs but the artists behind them and the films they represent, I figured it would be difficult for Taylor to walk away with a Golden Globe (just like the year before when she lost it to Adele's Skyfall).

Yet I couldn't understand why any another song wouldn't have been equally deserving.

I don't mean to disrespect Mr. Mandela, but I feel that of the many considerations taken in deciding the winner, the fact that he passed away not very long ago contributes to a certain extent. I wouldn't know whether it's true or if it is, to what extent since obviously, I'm not a member of any organisation affiliated with the award. I'm just a layman wondering why.

Of the five nominees, I've listened to three songs (namely Atlas, Let It Go, and Sweeter Than Fiction, all of them in my favorites) and I've watched two of the featured motion pictures (The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and Frozen). Which means I could have only assessed three of the five nominees to my own set of criteria. Since they are all my favorites, I feel that they resonate well with their featured: Atlas with... Katniss Everdeen fighting in her second Hunger Games in a row (although I guess We Remain by Christina Aguilera with its love theme kinda fit the story better), Let It Go which completely mirrors Elsa's feelings of freedom after she left Arendelle in Frozen (she sings it actually. In a musical-esque feature, songs complimenting the story is of utmost importance.), or Sweeter Than Fiction which highlights the more important part of Paul Potts' life behind his success - the love of his life, supporting him always.

Coming to the remaining two nominees which are both unfamiliar to me, I couldn't provide any assessment of their worth. This is actually the first time I've heard Inside Llewyn Davis. For Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, I've actually heard it in the buzz surrounding Mr. Mandela's passing (then another question comes: would the movie generate that much buzz given the unfortunate event didn't happen? Again, I don't mean any disrespect and I don't wish to know the answer.)

I'm not actually sure but I believe the Golden Globes are determined by critics. Any of Atlas, Let It Go, or Sweeter Than Fiction could have been the people's choice simply based on familiarity, especially Let It Go (wouldn't be an understatement if the first comments on IMDb's Facebook update of the award are all "Let It Go should have won"!). Then it boils down to how different critics are in picking an award, compared to laymen like you and me. Much of my assessment of the three songs is based on appeals and feelings (things important to me when listening to music) which are then projected to the stories they represent to determine their "fit". Critics seemingly use their brains in a different way to assess songs' worth of getting an award. This difference doesn't just apply to music. Yesterday I saw About Time for the first time. Truly a beautiful and meaningful story; through Tim's time-travel experiences, the film ultimately leaves us a message to treasure life, treasure the time we have with our loved ones. Yet when I read excerpts of reviews, besides compliments for the film's sincere directing and acting, there are ridicules for the film's "plot holes". Which angers me because really all I care about is "this film appeals to me and my emotions, and that's good enough... who cares about plot holes and shit when it's easy to understand and engaging and entertaining!"

I think I've rambled long enough to get this off my mind. From one simple award to a fight between me and these messed-up critics.

In the end, I'm still super proud of Taylor for just being nominated. Quoting Sweeter Than Fiction itself:
I'll be one of the many saying,
"Look at you now, look at you now, now."
I'll be one of the many saying,
"You made us proud, you made us proud, proud."

And congratulations to the guys from U2 for winning the award with Ordinary Love.


Popular posts from this blog

Short story: Germanium rings

Lots of things going on at the moment, Phần 2: 2/9 (phần 3)

A Special Investigative Issue: How to Run Around NTU in Twenty-Two Minutes and Fifty Seconds