Photo Credit: Paul Drinkwater/NBC
It was a night of upsets and surprises at the 70th Annual Golden Globe Awards. Well, in the movie category, that is. With so many broadly appealing and inspiring films to choose from, the Hollywood Foreign Press apparently decided to spread the wealth, handing out accolades to several of them, without choosing one clear, sweeping winner. After an Oscar nomination snub this week, Argo was the big surprise of the evening. Not only did Ben Affleck take home the best director trophy, but the movie unexpectedly won a Golden Globe for best motion picture (drama) over frontrunners Lincoln and Zero Dark Thirty.
Not to worry, those films didn't come away empty-handed. Daniel Day-Lewis surprised no one by winning best actor in a motion picture (drama) for his portrayal of the heroic central character in Lincoln. And Zero Dark Thirty's Jessica Chastain beat frontrunner Naomi Watts for the corresponding best actress award in that category.
Les Miserables took the top three trophies in its category: best motion picture (comedy or musical), Hugh Jackman won for best actor in a motion picture (comedy or musical) and Anne Hathaway picked up a best supporting actress in a motion picture Globe. But Silver Linings Playbook and Django Unchained both received Golden love in other categories -- with Silver Linings' Jennifer Lawrence taking best actress in a motion picture (comedy or musical) and Django Unchained's Christoph Waltz winning the corresponding trophy for best supporting actor.
Winners in the TV realm were slightly more predictable. Showtime's Homeland won best television series (drama), and both its leads, Claire Danes and Damian Lewis, walked away with the best actor and actress trophies.
"I'd like to thank the other nominees in this category," said Dunham on the podium. "Women who have made me laugh and comforted me at the darkest moments of my life," Dunham gushed in a classy/funny speech after winning best actress in a television series (comedy). "Zooey [Deschanel], Tina [Fey], Julia [Louis-Dreyfus], and Amy [Poehler] have respectively gotten me through middle school, mono, a ruptured eardrum, and the acute floating anxiety that populates my entire life."
This allowed Fey and Poehler to act petulant about losing to the much younger comedienne. "Congratulations, Lena," cracked Fey, pretending to drown her sorrows in a stiff drink. "I'm glad we got you through middle school. Middle school?!"
There were other memorable speeches during the evening. Returning champ Danes (who won the best actress in a TV series (drama) Globe last year) was endearingly grateful. "I have to thank the Hollywood Foreign Press for being so insanely generous to me for so many years now," she gushed. "I was up here when I was 15. This is amazing." (For a bonus 10 points, name the show she won for then…Answer: My So-Called Life.)
When she accepted the award for best supporting actress in a motion picture, Hathaway was equally joyful. "Thank you for this lovely blunt object that I will forevermore use as a weapon against self doubt!" she cried.
If there were an award for best presenters of the night, it would most certainly go to Kristen Wiig and Will Ferrell, who wandered onstage looking overwhelmed and emotional. Before presenting the award for best actress in a motion picture (comedy or musical), Ferrell explained, in typical wide-eyed fashion, that they'd had to watch the five nominated films beforehand.
"It's only five films, you just watch them," said Wiig, shrugging. But soon enough it was clear that neither had seen a single film on the list. Both compensated by being generically exultant. "And wow these performances!" "Oh my gosh, Emily Blunt is always beautiful and always amazing!" Then they systematically discussed each film, calling Judi Dench an unknown and mispronouncing Meryl Streep's name, etc. These two have never been better.
In a more serious, poignant moment, Jodie Foster accepted the ceremony's Cecil B. DeMille Award for lifetime achievement. "It's the most fun party of the year, and tonight, I feel like the prom queen," she said, and then launched into a heartfelt speech that touched on the loss of celebrities' privacy, being gay in Hollywood, her newly single status, her ailing mother and her 47-year career. "I can't help but get moony," she said, as the camera focused in on various celebrities with tears in their eyes. "This feels like the end of one era and the beginning of something else."
It was a bittersweet moment of truth, reminding the audience and viewers that these mountaintop moments are fleeting. Dunham and Affleck and the rest ought to relish them while they can.
For the entire list of winners, click here!