Tag Archives: jonah hill

‘Deadpool’ in, ‘Silence’ out and more Globes film surprises

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association never fails to disappoint with their assortment of nominees, which always seem to include some expected picks, some inspired ones and some headscratchers too.

The nominations for the 74th annual Golden Globes certainly had some bombshells, too. Here are a few notable snubs and surprises.

OLD GUARD OUT

Past Globes glory didn’t seem to matter this year for Hollywood legends Clint Eastwood, Martin Scorsese and Warren Beatty, none of whom received directing nominations despite all having won in that category at least once. In fact, Eastwood’s “Sully” (that means no Tom Hanks nomination either) and Scorsese’s “Silence” were shut out completely, while Beatty’s big return to directing and acting, “Rules Don’t Apply,” scored only one nomination — for actress Lily Collins.

NO LOVE FOR ‘LOVE & FRIENDSHIP’

Whit Stillman’s Jane Austen adaptation “Love & Friendship” charmed audiences and critics, but was left without a single nomination — especially surprising in the case of Kate Beckinsale, whose performance as the conniving and ambitious Lady Susan Vernon has been widely regarded as one of her best. Instead, in the musical or comedy category, the HFPA singled out the little-seen John Carney musical “Sing Street.”

THE NAUGHTIEST SUPERHERO

Besides being a superhero movie, the irreverent and very R-rated “Deadpool” is about as far away as one can get from a stereotypically tasteful awards choice, but somehow still scored two nominations — one for best motion picture in the musical or comedy category and another for star Ryan Reynolds. Perhaps they draw the line at animated food orgy, though — “Sausage Party,” despite a big awards push, was left out of the fun.

LEFT FIELD ACTING CHOICES

The comedy and drama distinction always allows for a few out-of-nowhere contenders, but the best performance by an actor in a musical or comedy was stacked with unexpected picks, including Colin Farrell for his performance as a single guy looking for love in the dark as night comedy “The Lobster,” Ryan Reynolds for “Deadpool,” and Jonah Hill as a bro arms dealer in the generally panned “War Dogs.” In the supporting category, Aaron Taylor-Johnson sneaked in with a nod for his portrayal of a sadistic Texan in “Nocturnal Animals” and Simon Helberg for his crowd-pleasing piano player in “Florence Foster Jenkins,” which elicited a gasp from those in the room at the Beverly Hilton while the nominations were being announced.

MISS SLOANE TAKES CHARGE

“Miss Sloane,” the Jessica Chastain-led lobbying thriller, might have bombed at the box office this weekend and received generally tepid reviews from critics, but it didn’t stop the HFPA taking notice of Chastain’s performance as the always three steps ahead of the competition Elizabeth Sloane. Since 2012, Chastain has been nominated for four Golden Globes and won once, in 2013, for “Zero Dark Thirty.”

WOMEN BEHIND THE CAMERA

With the statistics of female representation behind the camera as dismal as they are, it might not be that much of a surprise to find zero films directed by women up for best picture or best director this year. Yet it is notable, especially with critically acclaimed fare like Andrea Arnold’s “American Honey” and Mira Nair’s “Queen of Katwe,” both of which were shut out completely. The one saving grace is in the foreign category, where Maren Ade’s comedy “Toni Erdmann” is the nominee from Germany and Uda Benyamina’s “Divines” is nominated from France.

Why would gay ally Jonah Hill let fly with a slur?

Jonah Hill is winning points for what appears to be a sincere apology for hurling a gay slur at a paparazzo he says was harassing him.

But the insult the actor hurled last week still raises the question: Why would someone like Hill, for years a vocal supporter of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, use such a word? Even in a moment of anger?

Not that he’s the first or likely will be the last prominent person to do so. A national television audience heard Kobe Bryant shout the same slur three years ago at a referee he thought had made a bad call during a basketball game. Isaiah Washington said it to his Grey’s Anatomy co-star T.R. Knight in 2007, setting off a dispute that eventually got Washington fired. Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah yelled it at a Miami Heat basketball fan who had been getting on him during a game.

The word is “faggot,” and although it’s not the only gay pejorative, it seems to be the one people most often fall back on when they’re mad at someone. And often it doesn’t seem to matter if they think the person is gay or not.

“I think Jonah Hill’s comments are indicative of the fact that oftentimes when somebody uses that language, they aren’t using it because they are necessarily homophobic,” said Hudson Taylor, whose group, Athlete Ally, seeks to end anti-gay bias in sports. “That language is so prevalent in all the communities I work with that whether it’s a fourth-grader or a professional athlete, 90 percent have heard the term in the last week.”

It is so commonplace that when someone is furious and searching for the most insulting thing they can say, that’s the one they pick, says Howard Bragman, a veteran Hollywood crisis publicist and vice president of Reputation.com.

“In anger, the emotional overtakes the rational and you think of the harshest thing you can say, and that certainly sounds harsh,” added Bragman, who himself is gay, knows Hill personally and doesn’t believe the actor is anti-gay. Hill has been a public supporter of gay rights, including speaking out against Russian laws against “gay propaganda.”

Hill, who starred in The Wolf of Wall Street and the new 22 Jump Street film, let fly with the epithet after a photographer tried to get a rise out of him by insulting him and his family. That’s an act that’s fairly commonplace among Hollywood paparazzi, who often hope to get their money shots by provoking celebrities into doing something stupid.

“In response, I wanted to hurt him back, and I said the most hurtful word that I could think of at that moment,” Hill said this week on The Tonight Show.

Still, he has said in multiple apologies, there was no excuse for what he did.

Like Hill, Bryant and Noah were also quick to apologize, and the National Basketball Association hit them with large fines. Major League Baseball suspended Yunel Escobar, then a shortstop with the Toronto Blue Jays, two seasons ago for stenciling the word, in Spanish, onto his eye black.

Hudson says that isn’t enough. People have to learn the word is intolerable.

The word is derived from a centuries-old term for heretics, said Karen Tonson, a professor of English and gender studies at the University of Southern California, and only fairly recently has come to be among the worst gay epithets in the language. Thus it hasn’t yet developed quite the negative reputation with people as the N-word. But she believes it eventually will.

“I think enlightenment or knowledge of just how hurtful certain terms are does phase them out,” Tonson said. “It isn’t political correctness that is shutting down the use of that word. It’s about understanding that that word has a very violent etymology.”

Reel advice


“Cyrus”
(Fox Searchlight)

Mumblecore continues the quest for a mainstream audience with the dark romantic comedy “Cyrus,” co-written/co-directed by Jay Duplass and Mark Duplass (who starred in 2009’s mumblequeer feature “Humpday”). Following, as it does, on the heels of “Greenberg” (starring Ben Stiller and mumblecore goddess Greta Gerwig), it looks like the crossover has officially begun and mumblecore mania is here to stay.

Socially awkward John (John C. Reilly), who compares himself to Shrek, has been divorced from Jamie (Catherine Keener) for seven years. But John but still relies on Jamie for advice, guidance and occasional companionship, in spite of her impending marriage to Tim (Matt Walsh). However, all of that changes when John meets the seemingly out of his league Molly (Marisa Tomei).

Molly’s life is “complicated” and she moves at a cautious pace. But overeager John wants more. Of course he gets more than he bargained for when he meets Molly’s pampered, 20-something, live-at-home son Cyrus (Jonah Hill). At first, neither John nor Cyrus sees the other as a threat. It doesn’t take long before that changes.

Part psychological thriller/part pitch-black comedy, “Cyrus” pits the potential love interest and the controlling son against each other in a war of the wits. The manipulative Cyrus plays Molly and John against each other, although his mad mission backfires on him. Even at its darkest, “Cyrus” manages to find humor in the most unexpected (and uncomfortable) places and is surprisingly touching at times.