Monday, January 17, 2005

TV: Minute-by-Minute at the 2005 Golden Globes

Part 1 -- the Pre-Show.

8:00 -- The Golden Globes impress me with their class and dignity right off the bat by having a Ray Charles imitator sing a horrifically sleazy opening jingle with lines such as, "Dirty Harry could win three today!" or "And Uma simply kills in Bill!" Ugh.

8:03 -- Clive Owen wins Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture for Closer, beating David Carradine, Thomas Haden Church, Jamie Foxx, and Morgan Freeman. I can honestly say, if I had tried to guess this category, Owen would've been my fifth choice. If that. Very surprising.

8:06 -- Following that, I'm not quite as surprised when Natalie Portman wins for Closer (or, as Tim Robbins mispronounces it when presenting, Closer. Uh... you'll just have to trust me that he mispronounced it, I guess).

8:11 -- Jennifer Garner and Mark Wahlberg present Best Supporting Actress for a TV Series, Mini-Series, or TV Movie, and it took me so long to write down the name of the award, I completely missed who won it. (Okay, it was Anjelica Huston. For something called Iron-Jawed Angels.)

8:13 -- We follow this up with Best Supporting Actor in Etc. It's so freakin' weird, seeing Sean Hayes and Michael Imperioli nominated in the same category. I'm sorry, but Will & Grace and The Sopranos do not even exist in the same universe.

8:14 -- The Shat wins! The Shat wins! When he gets the award, he says, "William Shatner!" the way his character says "Denny Crane!" and that has just made the show for me.

8:21 -- Jim Carrey doesn't have much of a chance to cut loose as he introduces the President of the Hollywood Foreign Press, and reminds us that this is all a bizarre sham of an imitation of an awards ceremony, whose inexplicably odd awards categories (Best Musical or Comedy??) and shady nomination process is overseen by a remarkably small pool of otherwise completely irrelevant journalists, whose history is rife with bribery and corruption, which has only become so prominent on American TV because Dick Clark somehow profits from it, which only attracts so many big stars because of the open bar and huge after-parties, and which really has no logical reason to exist.

8:25 -- Hey, Claire Danes is going to be in Shopgirl! Hey, they're actually making a movie of Shopgirl! Cool.

8:26 -- Best Actress, TV Series - Drama, goes to Mariska Hargitay of Law & Order: Sports Utility Vehicle. Really? Out of the plethora of actresses on television, this is your choice? Really? What, was Pia Zadora not nominated?

8:30 -- Ian McShane wins Best Actor, TV Series - Drama, for Deadwood. Man, I gotta get HBO. Too bad Chiklis lost, but I hear Deadwood is just an amazing show.

8:37 -- Meryl Streep comes out to present, and cattily says, "Congratulations, Natalie" (Portman, who beat her for an award earlier). Funny. Also, in that bodice, Meryl is rockin' some Golden Globes herself! (I promise this is the first and last time I will make this joke. Unless Angelina Jolie is here tonight.)

8:40 -- When Jason Bateman and Zach Braff are announced as nominees for Best Actor, TV Series - Musical or Comedy, I start thinking, "Well, at least the Golden Globes are smarter than the Emmys about this category," and then I hear, "Matt LeBlanc, Joey." Spoke too soon!

8:41 -- Bateman very deservingly wins, and hopefully the Emmys will take notice of this (though I'm not counting on it).

8:50 -- Will Ferrell, wearing an eyepatch: "Rest assured, the boating accident was not as bad as it was reported." King of Comedy.

8:54 -- Annette Bening accepts her award for Best Actress, Movie - Musical or Comedy, in a strangely aristocratic, entitled fashion. Totally calm and unsurprised, as if she knew all along she deserved it, and the reading of the winner was just a formality. It makes me want to smack her, a little bit.

8:55 -- I made a promise earlier, when talking about Meryl Streep, but the dress Melina Kanakaredes is wearing makes it extremely difficult to keep that promise.

8:56 -- The first nominee for Best TV Series - Drama is 24. Apparently, the Globes are unaware of its reclassification as a Comedy as of last year.

8:57 -- They show Evangeline Lilly in the audience when the nomination for Lost is announced. Holy mother of pearl, she is as lovely as the day is long. Too bad she's so damn religious -- she was a missionary, even. That takes a little bit of the air out of my wicked fantasies.

9:13 -- We see Quentin Tarantino getting all close and cuddly with Uma Thurman. Are they officially a couple now? Can I officially be creeped out?

9:20 -- On the other hand, when they show QT talking with Martin Scorsese, that's somehow exciting to me. Two great filmmakers, people who probably never talk outside events like these, sharing thoughts on the movies. Just the idea is strangely thrilling.

9:24 -- The clip for nominee for Best Movie - Drama Closer shows Natalie Portman mouthing the words, "Fuck off." Cut to her in the audience, where she gleefully repeats "Fuck off!" and laughs giddily. So adorable. Too bad they didn't have the sound up at her table; we could've had another Bono incident.

9:25 -- Scarlett Johansson continues to be smokin' hot. That is all.

9:38 -- As Teri Hatcher hugs everyone at her table after winning Best Actress, TV Series - Comedy, Zach Braff, standing at the table behind her, jokingly holds his arms out for a hug, too. (He doesn't get one.)

9:39 -- Hatcher thanks "a network for giving me a second chance at a career when I couldn't have been a bigger has-been." It's funny, but it's also disarmingly frank and touching.

9:46 -- It blows me away that Clint Eastwood is nominated as composer for Million Dollar Baby. Now that I think of it, it really was excellent music -- carried the emotions of the scenes, but non-intrusively. Clint really is the man. Too bad he can be such a douchebag, politically speaking.

9:52 -- Mick Jagger gets the biggest laugh of the evening so far, accepting for Best Song, when he thanks everyone "who's working at Paramount... and everyone that was working at Paramount." Very in-jokey for us at home, but the live audience sure eats it up. He gets another huge laugh when he interrupts Dave Stewart who is thanking his and Mick's children: "All our children, there's so many we're not even gonna mention it!"

9:57 -- Prince is about a minute and a half into his introduction of Best Movie - Drama nominee Ray before the ovation dies down enough to hear him. People love that little purple dude!

10:00 -- Clint Eastwood wins (most deservingly, in my eyes) Best Director, Motion Picture, for Million Dollar Baby. After a huge standing ovation, he cracks everyone up with an ironically understated, "Well, thanks." He's the man.

10:03 -- Reading the nominees for Best Actor, Movie - Musical or Comedy, Diane Keaton screams Paul Giamatti's name with such unexpected, disturbing passion, I have to pause the TiVo and go take a nap.

10:04 -- Jamie Foxx wins for Ray. The tattoo on the back of his shaved head makes him look like he's replaced Vin Diesel in the sequel to XXX. (Actually, it's Ice Cube who's done that. No, seriously.)

10:05 -- Foxx is so insanely charismatic, and natural, and funny, and even heartbreaking accepting the award, he should win an award for best acceptance of an award. This makes me want to see Ray all the more. Way to upsell, Golden Globes!

10:22 -- With a series of movie clips from some really great movies -- The Fisher King, Good Morning, Vietnam, Dead Poets Society, Insomnia, Good Will Hunting, Aladdin (strangely, they leave out Hamlet and Baron Munchausen, but include Jumanji and Bicentennial Man) -- a great deal of goodwill is built up for Robin Williams, who is accepting the Cecil B. DeMille award. Then he does that sign language thing he does, and it's all gone in a shot. I would like Robin Williams so much more, if he didn't insist on being so Robin Williams-y all the time.

10:22 -- But then he takes a shot at Pia Zadora, and all is forgiven.

10:27 -- I love how half the crowd is laughing during his speech, and then the other half -- people like Johnny Depp -- have this frozen, disbelieving smile on their faces, like, "People really think this shit is funny?"

10:34 -- When Leonardo DiCaprio wins Best Actor, Movie - Drama, strangely enough I'm not looking at him so much as at presenter Charlize Theron. When they show her in profile -- damn, girlfriend's got some junk in her trunk!

10:40 -- I think it's unfair they showed scenes from all the nominees for Best TV Series - Drama, but for Comedy, they just show the titles. Gyp!

10:41 -- Desperate Housewives wins. It's a comedy? Adultery, drug abuse, kidnapping, suicide, murder -- comedy? Oh, okay. It's a comedy the same way 24 is a drama. Ah, what do I care, it just means I get to see all the housewives onstage again. Yowza.

10:47 -- Hilary Swank is still with that little weasel Chad Lowe? Not that I am jealous. It's just that most Hollywood marriages, when one partner becomes so very, very much more successful than the other, the marriage doesn't survive. Good for them. (Weasel.) Oh yeah -- good job on winning Best Actress, Movie - Drama. Beating out her biggest competition here, Imelda Staunton for Vera Drake, really makes a second Oscar for Swank more and more believable. Guess she wasn't a one-trick pony after all. Not that I thought she was, even before seeing Million Dollar Baby, but that film sealed the deal. Seriously, that film is so ridiculously great, everyone should see it.

10:55 -- Best Movie - Musical or Comedy: Sideways. Damn, I gotta see that movie! That's the one film from last year I most want to see but haven't yet. Paul Giamatti is awesome.

10:59 -- I am absolutely floored when The Aviator beats Million Dollar Baby for Best Movie - Drama. I thought after Clint and Hilary won, it was a shoo-in. (Shoe-in? How do you spell that?) Guess not. Not that I've seen The Aviator, or have any room to judge it, and not to detract from my love of Martin Scorsese's films, but I really hope this doesn't make the Oscar race a foregone conclusion. Million Dollar Baby deserves it.

11:01 -- Only one minute late, Nicole Kidman calls the evening to a close with a simple "Good night." Here's just one area where the Oscars can learn something from the Golden Globes (in addition to creating separate categories for Dramas and Comedies). Want to bring the ceremony to a close in a timely fashion, yet still give every single award-winner an unlimited time for their acceptance speeches? Cut out all those shitty, shitty, shitty musical numbers and alleged "comedy" bits. Just crank out the awards, baby!

My final conclusion for this, the first ever Golden Globes ceremony I've watched from beginning to end? Eh. I admired the streamlined nature of the show, and the loose, fun-filled atmosphere, but I still couldn't muster up a great deal of giving-a-rat's-ass. The Oscars are longer, more humorless, and more full of hot air, but they have that certain something, that air of importance, that makes me care. It's like the fat-free Oscars -- lighter and healthier, but with none of the guilty pleasure that makes it so delicious.

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