Alice In Wonderland (2010)
OK, this is just getting silly now. Known as the 2nd biggest high-profile 3D cinema experience, Tim Burton’s adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s classic children’s book went on to gross over $1billion at the worldwide box-office, with it’s sequel due this summer. Sure it’s whimsical and magical as a family film should be, but one of the five best musical or comedy films of 2010? Give over. Perhaps this is tying into the fact the Golden Globes nominated (and often awarded) the Best Comedy or Musical to Disney’s animated movies (Aladdin, The Lion King and Beauty and the Beast all fared well), and as such they just stuck with what they knew. Made by Disney? Must be a comedy!
Saturday Night Fever (1977)
Include The Bee Gees in your soundtrack (yes soundtrack, not musical score) and John Travolta dancing a couple of times and you have one of 1977’s best “musicals”. Apparently. In the eligibility rules for the category, it states that a “musical” is “defined is a comedy or drama where the songs are used in place of spoken dialogue to further the plot.” So, it’s not a musical then. And if it’s being classified as a comedy, remember at the end of the movie when that girl gets raped? Hilarious, right?
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Similarly to Her years later, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Minds is one of the quintessential films of the 21st century to deal with love and relationships in the modern age. It does have moments of humour and levity, but the film is ultimately a drama about lost love. Sure, Jim Carrey is in it, but he is particularly muted in the film, with Kate Winslet taking care of the crazier side of proceedings. Just because a movie has moments of levity, does not automatically make it a comedy. The Marvel Cinematic Universe is full of comedic moments, but those films aren’t found in the comedy section (well, Ant-Man might be). The film went on to win Best Original Screenplay at the Oscars that year.
Shakespeare In Love (1998)
One of the more controversial Oscar winners of the modern age, John Madden’s Shakespeare in Love beat out such films as Life is Beautiful, Saving Private Ryan and The Truman Show to win Best Picture in 1999. At the Golden Globes, it beat out Patch Adams, Still Crazy and There’s Something About Mary. See where the problem lies? But while the film does have some lighter moments throughout, namely from Geoffrey Rush and Judi Dench, it is for the most part a romantic drama. Plus, it beat much more deserving films, so there’s that too.
To close, we have another one of those baffling choices in the category. Up against Pretty Woman, Home Alone and Dick Tracey (itself a strange choice), Ghost was one of the most successful films of the year and has become one of the classics of the genre. But despite the Oscar-winning presence of Whoopi Goldberg and director Jerry Zucker (Airplane!, Top Secret!, The Naked Gun), Ghost is for many one of the quintessential romantic dramas of all time, and also won Best Original Screenplay at the Oscars. Did it get into the category because of who directed it, or are the Golden Globes just clueless?
What do you think of our list? Have we missed any that have won or been nominated in the category that aren’t Musicals or comedies? Let us know in the comments section below…
Scott J. Davis is Senior Staff Writer at Flickering Myth and co-host of The Flickering Myth Review Podcast. Follow him on Twitter.