Monday, January 18, 2010

2010 Golden Globes... and the awards season starts!

2010 Golden Globes Awards

By FRANCIS DASS

I saw Ricky Gervais just now. No, not in person, but on television, where he was was hosting The Hollywood Foreign Press Association's 2010 Golden Globes Awards.

The Golden Globes, in case you didn't know, is the awards show that kicks off the movie awards season -- not only in America but also the rest of the world. It -- USUALLY! -- foretells of what will transpires during Oscar night on March 7th. (Sometimes, the Oscars' Academy Awards gang like to cause an upset or two!)

Anyway, back to the 49-year old Englishman Gervais. I usually do not like the man at all. His humour never did translate over well with me. So, I have always avoided his shows (he is the man behind the original The Office in UK -- the show which was then transposed to American television audiences with the extremely likeable Steve Carell at the helm.)

Anyway, as host of the Golden Globes this year, Gervais has indeed chalked a new chapter for all other hosts in future at any awards programme: he has perfected the role of a host as a facilitator to the proceedings rather than the traditional one of the host aggrandizing him/herself to no end. (Sorry Whoopi -- although you ARE indeed very funny -- you are into that self-edification mode that comedians often fall into. Ditto to Jon Stewart of The Today Show.)

Gervais, on the other hand, was very much interested in pushing the programme along, oiling it remarkably with irreverent jokes.

Anyway, back to the Hollywood galaxy (which is not very, very far away) and its constellation of luminous stars.

As expected, Avatar won Best Motion Picture (Drama) and its director James Cameron won the best director golden globe.

Cameron said what the whole world knows by now: he and all the people gathered in the auditorium had the best jobs in the world. It is fitting indeed that Avatar ended on such a top note, as it is still number one at the box offices in the US and around the world. The film has collected a staggering US$1.6 billion around the world (stateside alone, it has bagged almost US$500 million!)

The golden Globes not only celebrates movies on the silverscreen but also television programming, and thus, it was a great, big, fat delight for everyone indeed that TV series Glee won Best Television Series (Musical or Comedy).

In accepting the award, one of Glee's producer/creators said the funniest thing that night when he described the actors in the musical comedy as "fake sexy-teen cast". On a more serious note, he posited that the show is about the importance of arts education and that Glee is -- laugher still had the last laugh! -- made for "anybody and everybody who got a wedgie in school!"

That high of an acceptance speech was easily matched by Robert Downey Jr who won the Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture (Musical or Comedy) nod. In a hilarious speech, that demonstrated this Hollywood royal's wit and intelligence, he demonstrated mock-hubris in the face of all the other overdone acceptance speeches where the stars feigned to be full of humility and gratitude. But a few seconds past not wanting to thank the talented cast and crew that make movies happen, he did thanks those involved in the intoxicatingly clever Sherlock Holmes where his performance was nothing short of magical.

Another funny notable moment was offered by Todd Phillips, director an producer of extremely funny movie, The Hangover, which won Best Motion Picture (Musical or Comedy). Phillips had said he was afraid at winning this award in case he got into a fist fight with Harvey Weinstein, whose musical Nine was up in the  same category.

"But I have My Tyson on my side," Phillips cleverly said, too close his joke, which was appreciated by everyone.

Paul McCartney was a presenter for the Best Animated Feature Film and he CRACK-ed a gem of a joke too. He said animated movies are enjoyed by kids and drug-taking adults, vaguely quipping about the good old drug-fuelled days of long ago.

Talking of speeches, although it was a dignified speech, I was rather put off by Mo'Nique, the actress who bagged the Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture award for her turn in Precious. She took herself too seriously (as did all the other Precious people seated at her table -- making it look like the Grim Reaper's table!) -- with the exception being the sunny spirited Gabourey Sidibe who played the lead role in Precious.

Other memorable moments at the Golden Globes this year was seeing James Cameron's oldest and dearest friend California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger introducing Avatar, the sight of Mike Tyson coyly stepping into the world of filmed entertainment and, of course, the sight of George Lucas seated right at the front table, a few feet away from the presenters -- the most important seat in the house, we reckon, since he is like Zeus, compared to the rest of them!

Gervais, to his great credit, delivered the funniest lines and ribbed his guest to the max. Paul McCartney, who handed out  the animated movies prize got ribbed as did Mel Gibson, just before Gibson gave out the award to director James Cameron.

Gervais had said: "I like a drink as much as the next man, unless the next man is Mel Gibson!" This truly was funny -- Gibson has been arrested slandering Jews a while back while driving under the influence -- and this clearly threw off even the good-humoured Gibson who laughed and flubbed momentarily.

Gervais started the evening with some fabulous jokes: how performers have all put on the show of the best work -- the best work of plastic surgeons, that is! --  and an interplay with Steve Carell who is more famous than Gervais thanks to the stunning global success of the American version of The Office and when Carell mockingly gestured that he would break Gervais in two when Gervais was getting "personal" and "rude".

Here is the complete list of the winners at the 2010 Golden Globes:

Best Motion Picture - Drama: Avatar

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama: Jeff Bridges (Crazy Heart)

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Robert Downey Jr (Sherlock Holmes)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama: Sandra Bullock (The Blind Side)

Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: The Hangover

Best Television Series - Musical or Comedy: Glee

Best Director - Motion Picture: James Cameron (Avatar)

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture: Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Serirs or Motion Picture Made for Television: Chloe Sevigny (Big Love)

Best Television Series - Drama: Mad Men

Best Foreign Language Film: Das weisse Band (Germany)

Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy: Alec Baldwin (30 Rock)

Best Screenplay - Motion Picture: Up In The Air

Best Performance by an Actress in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television: Drew Barrymore (Grey Gardens)

Best Performance by an Actor in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television: Kevin Bacon (Taking Chance)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Meryl Streep (Julie & Julia)

Best Mini-Series or Motion Picture for Television: Grey Gardens

Best Original Score - Motion Picture: Up

Best Originl Song - Motion Picture: Crazy Heart

Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series - Drama: Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife)

Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama: Michael C. Hall (Dexter)

Best Animated Film: Up

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television: John Lithgow (Dexter)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy: Toni Collette (United States of Tara)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture: MoNique (Precious)

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