Skip to main content

Hollwood Surprises No One at Most Self-Congratulatory Award Show of Year: Golden Globes Review



Golden Globes 2017: Review


Image result for jimmy fallon golden globes

The Golden Globes are the most pointless award show all season. They are not given by critics or people working in the industry, but rather the HFPA, a group of 89 foreign journalists who are notoriously susceptible to bribes. They nominate sometimes awful films and performances in hopes big stars will show up to their party. It is necessary when selecting a host to find someone who wouldn't feed into the HFPA's already inflated sense of self-importance. Why Amy Poehler and Tina Fey were the ideal hosts for this show is because their jokes, while very funny, were also pointed attacks at the HFPA, the individual stars in attendance, and the celebrity complex as a whole. Ricky Gervais had the same basic idea, except less mean and thus less funny. I was nervous when in August when they announced Jimmy Fallon, the talk show host with a reputation for being nice, as the host of this year's Globes. Turns out I was right to be nervous that Fallon wouldn't bring the needed meanness of Fey, Poehler, or even Gervais. His opening monologue wasn't at all mean, and worse, wasn't really funny either. But Fallon isn't entirely to blame for the off tone of the evening, several of the recipients also decided to pat the industry on the back, but we'll get to them.


Despite the superfluous existence of the award, the Golden Globes are usually among the best actual shows of awards season because the ceremony is quick and relatively painless. There's no In Memoriam tribute, there are none really technical categories that nobody cares about. Before 2009, the Golden Globes never even had a host. This year in particular it held like the Globes were trying to match the grandeur of the Oscars by unnecessarily prolonging the ceremony. There was an opening taped sketch that payed tribute to La La Land, which would go on to break the record for most awarded film at the Globes ever. It was well done, but, again, seemed pointless. I'm sure most of the people watching hadn't even seen La La Land yet. Also extending the evening were the Best Picture nominees being introduced by an actor in the movie before a trailer plays. It's an annoying trend that has now befallen every major award show.

There were a couple of big shocks in terms of winners (Aaron Taylor Johnson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Isabelle Huppert), but mostly things went as expected. Tom Hiddleston's attempt to highlight a serious issue in Sudan during his acceptance speech backfired and came across as congratulating Hollywood, specifically his own show. Then came time for Meryl Streep's headline-making speech after she was awarded the "prestigious" Cecil B. DeMille award. Streep, undeniably one of the greatest screen actresses alive today, chose to politicize her speech. Although she never said the words "Donald Trump", she made several jabs at the President elect, as did a couple others throughout the night. I absolutely agree with the content of her speech: support the arts, protect journalists, and don't mock disabled people. However, I must take issue with the context of her speech. A rich person telling a room full of rich people to be nice to less privileged people. It was self-congratulatory, patting Hollywood on the back for having the "responsibility of empathy". If it did anything, it furthered the political gap in this country. 

Image result for emma stone golden globe winAs far as acceptance speeches I did enjoy, Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling both did a nice job. Looking forward to the Oscars, La La Land probably got the biggest boost. I would say it's now the frontrunner to win Best Picture. It's closest competitors, Moonlight and Manchester by the Sea, both took a hit, winning only one prize each. But the HFPA and the Academy don't always align with their picks, like last years when the HFPA chose The Revenant instead of eventual Oscar champ Spotlight. Emma Stone's biggest competition, Natalie Portman, surprisingly lost in her category (to Huppert) and thus lost the chance to make a highly publicized speech, a boon for Ms. Stone.

I don't mean to be too harsh, it wasn't an unenjoyable night of television. Probably the biggest laugh came from Kristen Wiig and Steve Carrell's hilarious introduction of the Best Animated Film category. I usually like Fallon, I think his Tonight Show is the perfect iteration of a late night talk show in the 21st century, but the Golden Globes was not the right fit for him. 

What did you think of this year's Golden Globes? Did you agree with winners? What did you make of Meryl's speech? Let me know in the comments below!

Comments

Post a Comment

Leave a comment!

Popular posts from this blog

"My Mind Turns Your Life Into Folklore": Why Taylor Swift's "Gold Rush" Is a Song About Songwriting

"My mind turns your life into folklore." That line, from the song "Gold Rush," is the only time the word "folklore" is spoken on either of Taylor Swift's 2020 records, Folklore and Evermore , the latter of which is where the song appears. The presence of the line indicates that "Gold Rush" is a pivotal song not only in Swift's lockdown duology, but in her maturation as a songwriter.  Swift's early albums often drew heavily from her own experiences, with fans and the media scouring her lyrics for clues as to which ex-boyfriend her numerous breakup songs referred. Her tumultuous dating life made as many headlines as her music, in part because it informed so much of the music. The discourse was often ridiculous and reductive, and thankfully, that period of her career is over (Swift has been in a relationship with the actor Joe Alwyn since 2016).  Both of her 2020 albums have their fair share of autobiographical songs, but they also see

Every Julie London Album Ranked

Last month, for school I had to write a long research paper about 17th century Flemish flower paintings, which was a bit outside my comfort zone. So, I needed writing music and a lot of it. After listening a bit to Amazon Music's playlist "Big Band Christmas", I came across the song "Warm in December" by Julie London. It was a name I'd heard before, but I knew next to nothing about her. But the song was good enough to send me to Wikipedia, where I learned that London released 30 albums in the 14 years between 1955 and 1969. Most of the material she recorded was standards, the kind I spent most of 2020 listening to, so I decided that listening to London's entire discography (in order) would be perfect for writing my paper. Now, the paper's done ( I got an A), and I'm left with many, many thoughts about Julie London.  A film actress before releasing her first album, Julie is Her Name , in 1955, London had a mega-hit single with "Cry Me a River

Ranking the "Mission: Impossible" Films Worst to Best

The Mission: Impossible movies, based on the 1966-73 television series, are about Ethan Hunt and the Impossible Mission Force doing something that seems impossible at first, but always ends up being possible. Tom Cruise stars in all the films as Ethan, and other members of the team are Luther (Ving Rhames) and Benji (Simon Pegg). I like the Mission: Impossible movies because each film has a different director and thus each one has their own distinctive feel. Sure, there are a couple of constants (Cruise is in them all, they all are spy/action movies, and they all have people wearing masks - a nod to the TV show),  but going into a Mission: Impossible movie you are never quite sure what you are going to get.  Sometimes it's a silly fun spy franchise, other times it feels like nothing more than an excuse for Tom Cruise do to some sort of crazy stunt. Since the first film was released in 1996, there have been five movies, with a sixth on the way. Here's how I would rank the m