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MATTHEW LIEDKE COLUMN: 'Moonlight' and 'La La Land' heavy favorites for the Golden Globes

(L-R) Producer Gary Gilbert, actors Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, director Damien Chazelle, producer Jordan Horowitz and costume designer Mary Zophres pose backstage with their award for Best Picture for 'La La Land" during the 22nd Annual Critics' Choice Awards in Santa Monica on Dec. 11. (REUTERS/Danny Moloshok/File Photo)

The Gotham Film Awards and Critics' Choice Awards already have come and gone, but the first major test of the season comes tonight during the Golden Globes ceremony.

While the Globes don't always point out exactly who will win Oscars at the end of filme award season, it can still be a solid indicator. So, who's going to win the Globes? My guess is that "La La Land," "Moonlight" and "Manchester by the Sea" will take home the most hardware.

Here is a full look at my predictions for tonight.

Best Picture

• "Hacksaw Ridge"

• "Hell Or High Water"

• "Lion"

• "Manchester By The Sea"

• "Moonlight"—Predicted Winner

This year's race is starting to come down to three for Best Picture. "Moonlight," "Manchester by the Sea" and "La La Land" will be titles heard throughout awards season. However, because "La La Land" is in a separate category, this is coming down to "Moonlight" and "Manchester." This will likely be razor thin, but the edge goes to "Moonlight," which won Best Ensemble at the Critics' Choice Awards and Best Feature from the Gotham Independent Film Awards.

Best Musical or Comedy

• "20th Century Women"

• "Deadpool"

• "La La Land"—Predicted Winner

• "Florence Foster Jenkins"

• "Sing Street

This one isn't even close. "La La Land" is a big fish in a small pond for this category. There are some other well-crafted films here, but "La La Land" is a peg above them and is a favorite this season.

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture, Drama

• Casey Affleck—"Manchester By The Sea"—Predicted Winner

• Joel Edgerton—"Loving"

• Andrew Garfield—"Hacksaw Ridge"

• Viggo Mortensen—"Captain Fantastic"

• Denzel Washington—"Fences"

Denzel Washington might give Affleck some slight competition, but it will be minor. Affleck gave one of the best performances of 2016 and he will get recognition.

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture, Drama

• Amy Adams—"Arrival"

• Jessica Chastain—"Miss Sloane"

• Isabelle Huppert—"Elle"

• Ruth Negga—"Loving"

• Natalie Portman—"Jackie"—Predicted Winner

There were many great performances in this category but voters will probably side with Portman's outstanding acting as Jacqueline Kennedy. If there's any competition, it will be from Huppert in "Elle." However, Portman remains the safe bet.

Best Performance by an Actor, Comedy

• Colin Farrell—"The Lobster"

• Ryan Gosling—"La La Land"

• Hugh Grant—"Florence Foster Jenkins" - Predicted Winner

• Jonah Hill—"War Dogs"

• Ryan Reynolds—"Deadpool"

Ryan Gosling may snag this just based on how many nominations "La La Land" received. However, I think chances are good that Hugh Grant will get a trophy for his work in "Florence Foster Jenkins."

Best Performance by an Actress, Comedy

• Annette Bening—"20th Century Women"

• Lily Collins—"Rules Don't Apply"

• Hailee Steinfeld—"The Edge of Seventeen"

• Emma Stone—"La La Land"—Predicted Winner

• Meryl Streep—"Florence Foster Jenkins"

This one is basically a two way race between Streep and Stone. However, because Streep is getting the Cecil B DeMille award, Stone will likely get the nod here.

Best Performance by an Actor, Supporting Role

• Mahershala Ali—"Moonlight"—Predicted Winner

• Jeff Bridges—"Hell or High Water"

• Simon Helberg—"Florence Foster Jenkins"

• Dev Patel—"Lion"

• Aaron Taylor-Johnson—"Nocturnal Animals"

Bridges may get some votes for this award but I think Ali will pull off the victory for his superb acting in "Moonlight." His performance heavily stood out in that picture and he will likely get recognition.

Best Performance by an Actress, Supporting Role

• Viola Davis—"Fences"—Predicted Winner

• Naomie Harris—"Moonlight"

• Nicole Kidman—"Lion"

• Octavia Spencer—"Hidden Figures"

• Michelle Williams—"Manchester by the Sea"

Another category with plenty of talent but Davis is likely a lock for this one. She gave one of her best performances in "Fences" and will likely edge out Naomie Harris who had some great acting in "Moonlight."

Best Director

• Damien Chazelle—"La La Land"—Predicted Winner

• Tom Ford—"Nocturnal Animals"

• Mel Gibson—"Hacksaw Ridge"

• Barry Jenkins—"Moonlight"

• Kenneth Lonergan—"Manchester by the Sea"

"La La Land" is my pick to pick another major award under the director category. While "Moonlight" and "Manchester" remain contenders, from a directorial standpoint, "La La Land" leads the pack.

Best Original Screenplay

• "La La Land"

• "Nocturnal Animals"

• "Moonlight"—Predicted Winner

• "Manchester By The Sea"

• "Hell Or High Water"

Another razor thin category, considering "Moonlight," "Manchester" and even "Hell or High Water" have chances. However, "Moonlight" will likely win, based on the incredible writing featured in the picture.

Best Foreign Language Picture

• "Divines"—France

• "Elle"—France—Predicted Winner

• "Neruda"—Chile

• "The Salesman"—Iran/France

• "Toni Erdmann"—Germany

"Elle" has been one of the most celebrated foreign language films of 2016 and is more or less a lock for this award.

Best Animated Picture

• "Kubo and the Two Strings"

• "Moana"

• "My Life As A Zucchini"

• "Sing"

• "Zootopia"—Predicted Winner

This category is certainly loaded, containing great animated films such as "Moana," "Zootopia" and "Kubo and the Two Strings." The edge will likely go to "Zootopia," here, though.

Best Original Song

• "Can't Stop The Feeling"—"Trolls"

• "City Of Stars"—La La Land—Predicted Winner

• "Faith"—Sing

• "Gold"—Gold

• "How Far I'll Go"—Moana

"La La Land" has the edge in all categories related to music, and one of its key melodies, "City of Stars," should snag the win.

Best Original Score

• Nicholas Britell—"Moonlight"

• Justin Hurwitz—"La La Land"—Predicted Winner

• Johann Johannsson—"Arrival"

• Dustin O'Halloran, Hauschka—"Lion"

• Hans Zimmer, Pharrel Williams, Benjamin Wallfisch—"Hidden Figures"

Same deal here, "La La Land" should be a lock in this category.

Matthew Liedke is a news reporter for the Bemidji Pioneer and a film critic for AreaVoices. More thoughts on the film industry and movie reviews can be found at

Matthew Liedke

Matthew Liedke is the city, county and state government reporter for the Bemidji Pioneer. He also covers business, politics and financial news.

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