Jennifer Lawrence didn’t trip on her way up to the stage last night when she accepted a Best Supporting Actress award for American Hustle, nor did she inadvertently diss Meryl Streep. But she still managed to kick off the awards portion of the 71st Annual Golden Globes with her signature good-natured humanness.
“I’m sorry I’m shaking so much,” Lawrence muttered at the end of her acceptance speech. “Don’t ever do this again!”
It was a fitting way to open one of the most gloriously sloppy awards shows in a while—one that, three hours later, show host Tina Fey closed out by drolly declaring, “This was the beautiful mess we hoped it would be,” while her co-host Amy Poehler added, “I made out with Bono!”
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The Golden Globe Awards handed out for film last night suffered, as usual, from a fair amount of category confusion. The insistence by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association on dividing films into “drama” and “musical or comedy” (and their corollary desire that the former not utterly eclipse the latter) always results in a few head scratchers. But this year the categories seemed almost entirely arbitrary. Her, American Hustle, Inside Llewyn Davis, and August: Osage County are “comedies,” but Blue Jasmine and Saving Mr. Banks are “dramas”? If you say so.
But given the inevitable givens, the Globes did a pretty good job overall, particularly when it came to spreading around the wealth in a year teeming with worthy films. Seven of my top nine movies of the year came away with at least one prize: Her, 12 Years a Slave, The Wolf of Wall Street, Gravity, All Is Lost, The Dallas Buyers Club, and American Hustle. Now it’s true that the last two entrants on the list won as many awards as all the others combined, but these things happen.
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Hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler deserve the most credit. After all, awards ceremony hosting actually may be the most thankless job in show business. Ricky Gervais was funny, but his cynical joking turned people off. Anne Hathaway tried hard, but James Franco forgot to wake up. Jimmy Kimmel was pleasant, but not edgy enough. But Fey and Poehler proved to be just right—amusing, without overdoing anything.
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Have the Golden Globes just beaten the Oscars at its own game? Thanks to last night’s announcement of the shrewd hiring of Tina Fey and Amy Poehler as hosts of its 2013 ceremony, it might have. High-fiving a million angels!
The Motion Picture Academy’s ceaseless struggle to produce an Oscars telecast that appeals to younger viewers while still maintaining a relatively high level of traditional pomp and circumstance is, by now, a point of ridicule. First there was the parading of a Tiger Beat troupe made up of High School Musical stars and Miley Cyrus onto the broadcast. Then, the fateful hiring of Anne Hathaway and James Franco as hosts. The tremendous crash-and-burn of the Brett Ratner/Eddie Murphy “edgy” producing/hosting team that never was. Yet the very embodiment of the “If at first you don’t succeed mantra…,” the Academy made another attempt at reaching the 18-24 demo, booking Seth MacFarlane, the man behind Family Guy, Ted, and nearly nothing that a majority of the aging Academy members have ever heard of, to preside over this year’s telecast.
It was a risky choice, and one that might have ended up seeming wise in the long run. That is, until the Hollywood Foreign Press ruined everything by landing what may be the most perfect combination of award show hosts that there has ever been: Fey and Poehler.