Ah, The Golden Globes, a time for dressing up and drinking single malt Scotch.
Johanna and I were on a big delay for the event, due to other activities, and also due to the fact that we wanted to be able to fast-forward through all of the commercials. Just as we were sitting down to start it I got a text from my friend Mike that, while ruining one of the winners for me, gave me the idea of (not really live) live-blogging the event. So thanks, Mike! Here are my thoughts, along with exciting updates about my winner-picking competition with Johanna (all times listed are Eastern Time Zone, and not when I actually watched it; not only did we start it late, I had to pause it every ten minutes or so to try to find the mouse that we keep hearing in our kitchen).
8:00-8:04 – A nice open from Ricky Gervais. Even if I weren’t such a big fan of his I would applaud his selection as host. He’s exactly what these things need, someone who has no interests to protect and no problem poking fun. His jokes seem to be hitting with the audience, but it’s almost like it’s canned laughter or something, because the wide shots of the big stars up front aren’t revealing too many smiles. Maybe the laughter is coming from the people in the back. Hollywood, as always, taking itself too seriously.
8:05 – Nicole Kidman out to present Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture. It must be cold in there. Johanna noticed that, by the way, not me. And the winner is, Mo’Nique, my pick. I take an early lead over Johanna, who chose Penelope Cruz.
8:08 – Mo’Nique says “Thank you for letting me play with you,” to the young star of Precious, which seems inappropriate considering what I’ve heard about the content of the movie.
8:10 – Two Foxes out on the stage to present Best Actress, Television, Comedy. Although I was technically picking my pool based on whom I thought would win, not whom I wanted to win, I had a few choices that I just couldn’t allow myself to go against, like Tina Fey here. Johanna and I both chose Ms. Fey, and the award goes to Toni Collette, in all her orange glory, for The United States of Tara. Seriously, no one has ever watched that show, ever. Nice choice, Hollywood Foreign Press.
8:16 – The weird guy from Big Bang Theory and one of the Gilmore Girls out to present Best Supporting Actor, Television. The award goes to John Lithgow, which is ridiculous, because Third Rock from the Sun hasn’t been on the air for like a decade. Johanna and I both went with Michael Emerson, because without him Lost would have gone the way of Heroes.
8:20 – “I’ve had so much fun creeping out the entire country for the past six months.” Replace “six months” with “thirty years,” John Lithgow.
8:21 – Paul McCartney out to present Best Animated Feature. Doesn’t seem to care that much, makes a joke from the seventies about drugs. I’ve heard good things about The Fantastic Mr. Fox, but Johanna and I both went the obvious choice here, Up. I lead, two categories to one.
8:23 – Our first play-off music of the night, when the sweet Up guy attempts to speak for more than 10 seconds. This makes me so uncomfortable.
8:27 – Things are about to get boring: here comes Kate Hudson. She’s presenting the first of the nominees for Best Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy, Nine. Here’s a montage. I know nothing about this film, really, but wasn’t it supposed to be terrible? I feel like it got some votes for worst film of the year on the lists I was reading.
8:29 – Don’t listen to Ricky Gervais; do not buy The Invention of Lying on DVD. Also, Johanna thinks he looks like David Bowie when he has his mouth open.
8:30 – There is no Hollywood couple that seems more uncomfortable in life than Felicity Huffman and William H. Macy. Yeesh. Here she is, stumbling through her introduction of some guy that cares about charities.
8:31 – Here’s John Lithgow again! Oh, wait, this is the president of the Hollywood Foreign Press. Time to top up my drink.
8:32 – The least funny part of 30 Rock and the funniest part of How I Met Your Mother out to present Best Actor, Television, Drama. I almost made a joke about Michael C. Hall’s hat, but then I remembered the poor guy has cancer. Now I feel like an asshole. If I had remembered the cancer, I might have picked him to win, but instead both Johanna and I went with Jon Hamm. In her words, “that was a last year pick.” M.C. Hall is great on Dexter, and I’m totally fine with this.
8:36 – The same presenters doing Best Actress, Television, Drama. I went with January Jones, because although it seems like she isn’t really doing all that much on that show, everybody behind the scenes just raves. Johanna went with Anna Paquin, whom I also like on True Blood. The award goes instead to 15 seasons of ER. Congratulations, Julianna Margulies.
8:42 – Here’s the ghost of Harrison Ford to stumble through an introduction of the Up in the Air montage. At least he remembered to leave his drink backstage this time, unlike the 2006 Golden Globes when he had to hand his glass to Virginia Madsen to open the envelope.
8:44 – And now we’re all uncomfortable after Gervais’ Paul McCartney divorce joke. The producers had better not get mad; this is why they hired him. He brings on Cher and Christina Aguilera, about whom Johanna exclaims, “What’s up with her boob?!” They’re here to present Best Original Song, Motion Picture. I went with the song from Crazy Heart, a movie I haven’t seen, but, hey, it’s about a musician! And I win. Johanna played it too safe with her choice of U2. At least that Avatar song didn’t win, that sounded terrible. I’m up, three picks to one.
8:47 – Cher and Christina back for Best Original Score, Motion Picture. I went with Where the Wild Things Are, because I want to see Karen O give a speech. Johanna concurs. Up wins, which I’m cool with. Johanna is starting to get pissed about her poor performance so far. We do this for every award show, and she almost always beats me. For every category she loses she yells “I knew I should have picked that!” Now she’s asking to change her best picture pick, but rules are rules. She’s still talking, too: “This is a bullshit ballot, too. I don’t like any of these nominees. Where’s Harry Potter? They don’t get any nominations, not even for song, or…cinematography?” I point out that there is no cinematography category.
8:54 – Here are Amy Adams (pregnant, apparently?) and Josh Brolin out to present Best Mini-Series or TV Movie. The first nominee named is Georgia O’Keeffe, which leads Johanna to say, “Oh, this is a Lifetime movie? I never would have picked this if I knew it was a Lifetime movie. They should tell you the network on here.” I played it safe with Grey Gardens and HBO. Johanna is now ranting about having picked Grey Gardens at the Emmys and gotten burned. I’m up, four picks to one. This is looking like a landslide.
8:58 – Here’s my guy Tom Hanks introducing the montage for Julie & Julia. Take notes, Harrison Ford. I actually watched this movie last night, and thought it was, at best, mediocre, and really disliked the modern day bits. I can’t believed this is nominated for anything, really.
9:00 – Colin Farrell, looking like a character out of a mid-Nineties Todd McFarlane comic book with his slick hair, is here to present Best Actress, Motion Picture, Comedy. These categories seem all out of order. Johanna and I both went with Meryl Streep as Julia Child, probably because we watched it last night. “Nominated greedily.” Nice line, Colin. We both get the win, but Johanna makes up no ground. Five to two, me. Also, I doubt we’ll be seeing any play-off music for Ms. Streep as she does her impression of the SNL impression of her being humble from last night.
9:09 – And here’s Helen Mirren presenting a poem she wrote during the commercial break. No, wait, she’s presenting a montage for Precious. I haven’t seen this movie yet, but I’m bummed out just thinking about it.
9:10 – Now, Best Actor, TV Movie. No one has cared about this category since Roots. I went with the guy that played Churchill. Johanna went with Kenneth Branagh. Kevin Bacon wins, and gives a speech that sounds like Keanu Reeves crossed with Tom Petty.
9:13 – Best Actress, TV Movie. Johanna and I simultaneously say “Whoa…” after the shot of Anna Paquin’s low-cut dress. We also both pick Jessica Lange, who loses to her Grey Gardens co-star Drew Barrymore. Here we go, another patented Barrymore semi-coherent, annoying, faux-emotional acceptance speech.
9:16 – Yup, I was right. She’s such a fraud.
9:21 – OK, I don’t mean to sound like Perez Hilton or something, but Cameron Diaz looks like a ghoul. She’s here to introduce the montage for It’s Complicated. I love Alec Baldwin and Meryl Streep, but this just feels really lightweight for a Best Picture nominee, right?
9:23 – Well, Jennifer Aniston and Gerard Butler, who seem to hate each other (but, according to Johanna, are dating?), are here to present Best Screenplay, Motion Picture. Johanna and I both went with Inglourious Basterds, out of principle. Up in the Air wins. Johanna then says “I thusly predict that it will not win best picture.” She adds, “Don’t put that in, I don’t think ‘thusly’ is a word.” Jason Reitman agrees with us that Tarantino should have won, then he starts making out with George Clooney, verbally. And now we have more play-off music. The Golden Globes seem to be much more unfair about the amount of time allotted to non-stars versus stars than the Oscars or the Emmys.
9:26 – Two stars that were much more relevant in 2004, Ashton Kutcher and Jennifer Garner, here to present Best Actor, Television, Comedy. Johanna and I both went with Alec Baldwin. An obvious choice, and an obvious winner. Six to three, me.
9:32 – Samuel L. Jackson, wearing Daniel Radcliffe’s Harry Potter glasses, presenting the montage from Inglourious Basterds. Johanna and I both agree that this movie should win, but neither of us thought it had a good enough chance to actually pick it. Jackson then introduces Sophia Loren, who looks like she buys her glasses at the same store he does. She’s presenting Best Foreign Language Film. Our ballot only has the foreign titles on it, so we have no idea what any of these are. I chose Baarìa, but Johanna picked the winner, Das weisse Band. She creeps a bit closer to me, and is boldly predicting a comeback. Six picks to four; my lead is shrinking.
9:38 – Chuck and Amy Poehler presenting Best Television Series, Drama. Johanna has no chance of making up ground, as we both picked the winner, Mad Men. Right before the winner is announced, though, she says “I think this might be Big Love’s year.” Yeah, right. Christina Hendricks proceeds to steal some attention from Matthew Weiner.
9:45 – Taylor Lautner is out to present the montage for (500) Days of Summer. The audience seems to be getting restless, and is talking over him.
9:46 – Kristen Bell and Chace Crawford (according to Johanna, I don’t know the guy) here to present Best Supporting Actress, Television. We both went with Jane Lynch (this was my nod to the fact that people won’t shut up about Glee). Chloë Sevigny wins and thanks her “friends in New York.” Eh.
9:49 – Halle Berry is here, continuing the low-cut dress theme of the evening. She’s presenting Best Supporting Actor, Motion Picture. We both chose Christoph Waltz. This is the one category tonight that I would have been seriously upset about if my choice hadn’t won. Luckily, he did. Very well-deserved. He should not have been played off so quickly. I hope to see him again at the Oscars. Eight to six, me.
9:56 – Leo and De Niro here to talk about Martin Scorsese. These guys are talking like the first one to not call him “Marty” loses a bet. He’s one of my favorite directors, but this is a good time for me to take a break.
All right, now that Ernie has been walked and Johanna and I have changed into more comfortable clothing, let’s bring this home.
10:13 – Jodie Foster is still alive, and is here to introduce the montage for The Hurt Locker. I haven’t seen it, but I’ve heard it’s great.
10:14 – That was an outstanding joke at Mel Gibson’s expense, Mr. Gervais. And he has it coming.
Time for Best Director. Johanna and I both went with James Cameron, although we would both prefer Quentin Tarantino. Cameron wins, though. What is the deal with this guy? I like the movies of his that I’ve seen, and I’m sure those that I haven’t are great, but what has he done that’s transcendent (other than guest-starring on Entourage, obviously)? When did he become such a huge deal that all of his movies were guaranteed a billion dollar gross? I don’t get it. Anyway, nine to seven, me.
10:19 – Time for a big one: Television Series, Comedy. And I like every show that’s nominated, except for Glee. Guess what won? Seriously, that’s a joke. Add this to the list, along with Desperate Housewives and Ugly Betty, of terrible shows that have won comedy awards. I’m only going to be able to sleep tonight by telling myself that the shows that were actually funny split the vote amongst themselves, and Glee just squeaked through.
10:26 – Here’s the always beautiful Reese Witherspoon to present Best Motion Picture, Comedy. Johanna goes with the mainstream pick, The Hangover, and I choose a movie I’ve never seen, (500) Days of Summer. And she wins. This is getting too close for my liking; nine to eight, me. Also, Mike Tyson has had a tough life, and I like to see good things happen to him, but what is he doing on stage right now?
10:33 – Isn’t it funny that it’s no longer weird that Arnold Schwarzenegger is the Governor of California? Anyway, here he is, talking about “Avadar.”
10:35 – Here’s the always creepy Mickey Rourke to present Best Actress, Motion Picture, Drama. I picked the An Education girl and Johanna picked the Precious girl. The Hollywood Foreign Press picks Sandra Bullock for The Blind Side. OK, I can go the rest of my life without seeing that movie and still be correct in saying that’s ridiculous, right? This has become a complete farce.
10:39 – And here’s the gawky British girl from the movie I had forgotten about from last year to present Best Actor, Motion Picture, Comedy. I went with Matt Damon, but Johanna sneaks up on me with her Robert Downey pick. We’re now tied, but I’m almost happy about it, because he knocks his speech out of the park. Good job calling out the producers for the excessive playing-off music and the Hollywood Foreign Press for being a strange bunch, Rob.
10:46 – Kate Winslet out to present Best Actor, Motion Picture, Drama. We both lose with our safe choice of George Clooney, as the award goes to Jeff Bridges and his goatee. Sorry, everybody, this was for Crazy Heart, not The Big Lebowski. Johanna and I are tied with one category to go, Best Picture. Her choice: Avatar. My choice: Up in the Air. Neither of us has seen either of these movies. You could cut the tension in the room with a knife.
10:55 – Julia Roberts accompanies her huge amulet out on to the stage to present the biggest award of the night, Best Motion Picture, Drama. Of the five nominees, Johanna and I have only seen Inglourious Basterds. We both absolutely loved it, but don’t think it can win. Here we go. The winner is…Avatar. I am sincerely shocked. I really thought I had this in the bag. Luckily, all she wins is that I will agree to accompany her to the dog park with Ernie, and she was going to make me do that anyway. But I really thought I had this tied up. Oh, well. She’s in tune with the wackos at the Hollywood Foreign Press; I’ll make it up at the Oscars, the awards that really matter. This show didn’t even have a dead person montage.