Monday, January 15, 2007

Elizabeth the sequal

Ok, the best thing about the Golden Globes was indeed Sasha Baron Cohen's acceptance speech. Maybe. It might also have been Forrest Witaker finally getting the recongition he deserves as one of the few truly great actors of our time. Like Philip Seymore Hoffman last year, he was my hope (and I haven't even seen *Last King of Scotland* yet). Like Hoffman, Whitaker is an actor's actor whom everyone in the industry knows as one of the truly great actors in the business, but because he's an actor and not a movie star he gets little recognition outside the industry and the critics. The gosspi rags ignore him and he is not a bankable star. That he landed a plum role is no surprise because, again like Hoffman, he chooses great roles for himself but, like the afformentioned once more, this time he chose a famous person, a larger than life character that many people remember and whom many people who don't always go in for art films might be interested in. Of course, Idi Amin is a bit more terrifying than Truman Capote (a bit). I had no idea how strongly I was rooting for him until his name was announced and I screamed. The standing ovation he received was the town's way of saying "it's about time," and it is. Ghost Dog. Crying Game. Phone Booth. Good Morning Viet Nam. On and on. I love his work.

But both those great moments might have been overshadowed by Helen Mirren's accomplishment: winning the acting award in two seperate categories, one for TV Mini series and one for Film Drama one for playing Queen Elizabeth the First and the other for playing Queen Elizabeth the Second. Now that's symmetry. The tabloids will have dozens of jokes about it tommorrow and, I swear, I cna't think of anything witty to say. The awards are quite an accomplishment, while the roles, quite frankly, form an almost disturbing coincidence.

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