Highlights of the Golden Globes

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Ricky Gervais kicked off the 67th Annual Golden Globes show with a prolonged masturbation joke. Which, if you think about it, has a certain perfect symmetry. Oh, how those Hollywood types love to toot their own horns. So to speak.

The Golden Globes has been called “the drunk Oscars” and is much loved for its casual vibe. Stars sit around tables drinking champagne and not eating the food in front of them. They mingle, they chat, and they get flustered as they wind their ways through the tables to the stage. There are a lot of candid shots as the camera pans the audience. It’s all very homey and familiar. If $10,000 gowns and row upon row of perfect, gleaming teeth remind you of home.

I was rather looking forward to seeing Gervais host. His promo spots were pretty funny, and in general he strikes me as an unpredictable guy. But what I had forgotten about these shows is that the host really only pops in occasionally. In reality, it’s a parade of glittering celebs reading from a teleprompter and telling canned jokes about the industry.

About 45 minutes in, I started to understand why awards shows are losing audiences. Things always gets to the point where all you can really hope for is that Mickey Rourke will do something weird. And then, after all that waiting, after sitting through Taylor Lautner and Ashton Kutcher and some guy named Christoph Waltz winning Best Supporting Actor for Inglourious Basterds, finally, finally they get to the Best Picture. And it’s Avatar. Hardly a shakeup.

If you want to see who else won, have a look here. There weren’t many surprises, although Sandra Bullock winning best actress for The Blind Side was a bit of a head-scratcher, likable as she is. I won’t trouble you with another list of winners. Instead, a highlight reel:

Actor most like The Dude: Jeff Bridges’ acceptance speech after winning Best Actor for Crazy Heart was so deeply laid back and punctuated with so many “mans” it was like watching The Big Lebowski come to wearing a tux in a room full of movie stars.

Most endearingly self-aware: Drew Barrymore. She won for her awesome portrayal of Little Edie in Grey Gardens. When she thanked the director for giving her a chance at the role, she acknowledged that most of the time she comes off “like Jeff Spicoli’s girlfriend.” What she didn’t seem to be aware of were the bioluminescent sea sponges attached to her dress at the shoulder and the hip. Still, cute speech.

The class act: Meryl Streep, who won for playing Julia Child in Julie & Julia: “I have gotten to play so many great women that I am often mistaken for one.” Also, she mentioned Partners in Health and their work in Haiti without sounding even a little preachy or off-topic.

Funniest line: Ricky Gervais, holding his glass and blaming his beer for any offense he may have caused: “I mean, I enjoy a drink as much as the next guy. Unless of course the next guy is Mel Gibson.” Cue Mel Gibson’s entrance.

Most mouthing of “Hi, Alice” to the camera: Tina Fey

Most incoherent, where-am-I acceptance speech: T-Bone Burnett, after winning Best Original Song for Crazy Heart’s “The Weary Kind.” Musicians can get away with it, though.

Most overwrought moment: Helen Mirren standing silently on stage for a moment before beginning her introduction to Precious, with “Life is hard” in her most imperious British accent. Helen, have some fun.

Weirdest audience members: Toss up between Mike Tyson and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Scratch that, it was Mike Tyson.

Highest dress slit: Jennifer Aniston. I mean, wow.

Cutest person to never stand a chance: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who was nominated for 500 Days of Summer. He was never going to win, but boy, did he look genuinely happy to be there.

Most self-congratulatory speech: James Cameron, after Avatar won Best Picture: “Give yourselves a hand because we have the best jobs in the world. Really.” But, what did you expect for a man who once called himself “the king of the world”?

Hardest praise to live up to: When Leonardo DiCaprio introduced the Cecile B. DeMille Award-winner, Martin Scorsese, he compared him to Shakespeare, Beethoven, Picasso, and Da Vinci. He left out Martha Graham, Michelangelo, and Jesus.

What did you think of the show?

Comments (18)
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Jan 27, 2010
Highlight for me was Michael C.hall's award. Huge talent, classy guy, overdue win. Sandra Bullock's wit is a rarity among Hollywood women, she was great. And ofcourse Robert Downey Jr. can't help be brilliant. Scorsese's moment was special simply because he turned me into a film fanatic years ago. Gervais could have been better. Good to see Mad Max back in circulation. The man is a bonafide star, no question.
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Jan 20, 2010
I thought I was mostly watching a bunch of people getting drunk and making themselves silly. I did enjoy Meryl Streep winning for Julie and Julia. She did a superb job. Drew Barrymore winning for Grey Gardens was terrific! I love Drew! I went ga-ga over Jennifer Aniston's dress. Woweee! Mad Men winning? What's the deal with this show? I watched the first two seasons and kept finding no real storylines and it's an absolute bore! Loved the time period it's set in; but I gave up on the last season because it wasn't really going anywhere for me. I didn't find Ricky Gervais funny at all. Why couldn't they get Neil Patrick Harris? Also, I thought most of the presenters were actors who work on NBC shows. Wasn't that kind of odd? No wait! It was broadcast on NBC! I wish TBS/TNT broadcast it. There wouldn't had to be any producer looking at his/her watch to move the show along. I don't know why I watch these award shows. Most of the shows I enjoy don't get nominated and the actors I love are greatly ignored. Oh well.
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Jan 20, 2010
the self congratulation of it all has gotten pretty over the top and james cameron bugs the sh*t out of me even though i had seen avatar the night before and cried like a baby. it's a damn good movie but it's still painful to watch him win. i thought it was funny how pissed the "up in the air" director looked. i mean, come one. it was cute and all but really. i was watching with only one eye so enjoyed immensely these highlights (hadn't gotten most of them.) meryl streep is truly, without question, my hero. oh and yes m'onique brought it down for me, for sure.
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Jan 20, 2010
Best acceptance speech: Monique.
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Jan 20, 2010
Didn't anything think Felicity Huffmann was strange?
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Jan 20, 2010
Mel Gibson intro was amazing. Give Cameron a break.
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Jan 20, 2010
Give Cameron a break.
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Jan 20, 2010
Hmm...I haven't watched it yet, but from the little I've seen, Sandra Bullock was definitely deserving of her Golden Globe. If anything, as awesome as it was, The Hangover's win is probably the most surprising.
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Jan 20, 2010
So...."Sandra Bullock winning best actress for The Blind Side was a bit of a head-scratcher, likable as she is" and you saw "some guy named Christoph Waltz winning Best Supporting Actor for Inglourious Basterds"
Wow.
Their performances earned those awards. A fact anyone who has seen them will know.
It is better to stay silent & be thought a fool, than to open ones mouth & remove all doubt.
Stick to the biggest loser reviews, Sam.
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Jan 20, 2010
The Mel Gibson intro was fantastic!
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Jan 20, 2010
Not a fan of these, but I do like the casualness of it. The Oscars are way too stuffy!
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Jan 19, 2010
Have no interest in sitting through and watching an awards show, it's worse than the nba draft
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Jan 19, 2010
it is weird how of all the jokes Ricky Gervais made, the only thing to be noticed here is the masturbation thing and how long it was ! I mean the office and the nip/tuck work on the faces of the audience were good and had positive reaction both on people present at the event and others watching on the net. That section was even mentioned in Paris- France where the show wasnt broadcasted yet.
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Jan 19, 2010
Ricky Gervais had the ONLY shining moments of this ho-hum fest...
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Jan 19, 2010
thanks @fresa412, we've fixed the 'blind side' typo
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Jan 19, 2010
what do you have against christoph waltz? he was the best nominne
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Jan 19, 2010
Ricky Gervais' bits were really "golden" with every pun intended! however, most people desrved those awards! Drew was overdue for one and Alec Baldwin never stops winning!
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Jan 19, 2010
Well it was actually "The BLIND Side" Sandra Bullock won for, and if you would've seen it, not only would you remember the name but you would understand why she deserved that Golden Globe.
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