And so we have finished another Golden Globes. I am going to wait until after the Critics’ Choice Awards to do a true update of the overall Oscar race, but here are my immediate reactions to all that happened.
The Awards were secondary
- This is likely to be true for the rest of the award season, but the Globes was a rather serious affair for much of it, which is quite the change for what is generally the most rambunctious award show. Real issues permeated throughout the broadcast as Hollywood has been going through quite the reckoning as of late since it decided to try and clean up an industry that has been full of rampant sexism, power trips, and veneration of some deeply horrific human beings. At last, Hollywood is in the midst of burning all of this to the ground (it remains to be seen how thorough this ends up being, but things are happening), and that kind of makes it hard to have a lighthearted award show. Seth Meyers did his best to walk the thin line he was forced to walk, and try and acknowledge all that is happening with humor and humility, but, well, this is not the year for a white man to be hosting these awards (good luck with the Oscars, Jimmy Kimmel…). Combine this with the Times Up campaign that permeated throughout the night (not to mentioned the #MeToo movement that has permeated through everything), and the many cases where the industry could still be chastised for being tone deaf (who thought following Oprah’s speech with the all-male Best Director category was a good idea?), and in short, the night was full of political statements galore (well, the women’s speeches were at least) that made the Globes far more serious and somber than ever before.
The Globes was remarkably un-Globes-like tonight
- Seriously, nothing really all that crazy happened tonight. There were no out of nowhere winners that made no sense, and even the unexpected winners (like Aziz Ansari) weren’t wrong, just not something that we would usually expect. Of course, this might just be to make up for the fact that the Globes went all Globes in the nomination process in some very key places, like in its strange love For All The Money in the World, which likely what cost Greta Gerwig her nomination (or maybe Patty Jenkins or Dee Rees, but the point is this is a year when it is rather difficult to justify failing to nominate a woman) so that Ridley Scott could strangely get nominated again; or with The Greatest Showman (which is a fun, but hardly amazing movie) getting multiple nominations that should have gone to The Big Sick. But the list of winners themselves was actually rather sensible, which was a welcomed change of pace from previous years.
Welcome to the front of Best Picture Race, Three Billboards in Ebbing, Missouri; Lady Bird Awaits
- The biggest winner of the night was Three Billboards, which picked up the Best Drama Award and more importantly the Best Screenplay award (not to mention both Best Drama Actress and Best Supporting Actor). The most important indicator of a Best Picture winner since 2000 has been whether or not it also wins a Screenplay Oscar. Only three films have won Best Picture in the 2000s without winning a Screenplay Oscar (even if last year was kind of a bullshit example of this, because Moonlight was in the wrong category, but hey, it fits the narrative) so it’s kind of important. This is especially true in this case, because one of the movies Three Billboards defeated was Lady Bird, which was the other big winner of the night. Three Billboards had kind of been left behind in the early parts of the award season, but now it looks to be ready to be in the spotlight. There is a good chance we might be in for a real back and forth battle between these two movies as Three Billboards and Lady Bird compete for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and even have a lively Best Actress showdown between Frances McDormand and Saoirse Ronan. Unless something changes quickly it is hard to believe the ultimate Oscar winner won’t be one of these two at this point.
Maybe non-streaming networks shouldn’t even bother anymore
- Seriously, except for possibly Game of Thrones‘ final season (and as always, it is good to remember that normal convention never applies to Game of Thrones) it is hard to see non-streaming networks having a real chance in the Globes TV categories going forward, outside of the Limited Series categories. The Globes love shiny and new things, and looking as relevant as possible, and streaming is the future of television; so the Globes have embraced that to almost humorous lengths the last couple of years (such as when it decided to give all the awards to Mozart in the Jungle). This time, outside of Sterling K. Brown’s Best Actor win, the rest of the major TV awards all went to streaming networks. Hulu racked up Best Drama and Best Drama Actress awards with The Handmaid’s Tale and its leading actress Elisabeth Moss, Amazon racked up the Best Comedy and Best Comedy Actress awards with The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and its actress Rachel Brosnahan, and Netflix finally joined in on the major awards fun with the aforementioned win by Aziz Ansari for Master of None. The Globes have made the shift, and honestly even Game of Thrones might have trouble overcoming this.
The Globes spice up the Acting races
- The Best Actress race looks to be a big showdown between McDormand and Ronan, but that was merely a confirmation of expectations as opposed to a real change of pace, as opposed to the other races. Gary Oldman’s win means that this could finally be his year, even if he is going against Daniel Day-Lewis’ final performance and a hard charging Timothy Chalamet, who is likely too young to be a real threat. It should be said that James Franco also won, but this probably means that he is guaranteed a nomination, because 1) he won in a generally less revered category, and 2) his win has spurred a bit of controversy, as the rumblings about Franco’s, let’s say questionable character are beginning to come out, and after Casey Affleck’s win last year that shit is not happening again.
- Still the Supporting races are the real races that have been changed by the Globes. Willem Dafoe and Laurie Metcalf had been winning most awards throughout the season, and another win by each would have likely cemented their frontrunner status. Instead, both lost, and things are now a bit more chaotic. Of the two, Metcalf’s loss is probably the less troubling one, because though she lost to Allison Janney, who could easily ride this momentum all the way to an Oscar, Metcalf still has the fact that she is a part of a Best Picture Oscar favorite on her side–combined with Metcalf being a bit more of a lead actress than a supporting actress in that role. Dafoe, on the other hand, lost to Sam Rockwell, who is a part of what appears to be the other Oscar frontrunner, Three Billboards, and Dafoe’s own movie, The Florida Project while heavily honored, might not have enough weight to maintain Dafoe’s momentum if Rockwell is able to win again. Of course, there is still a chance that voters may be too split between Rockwell and his co-star Woody Harrelson, and Dafoe has won virtually every other award so far, so this may be much ado about nothing. But if nothing else, both supporting races are now significantly more interesting.
Guillermo del Toro had a good night… sort of…
— CNN Entertainment (@CNNent) January 8, 2018
- Del Toro won Best Director, and it was a well deserved win, and he got to give a rather good speech (even if he was rattled and looked completely overwhelmed by the moment). But it was hard to really say how much of a triumph this should be considered because of the giant elephant in the room, which was the glaring omission of any female nominees in a year that had arguably three deserving nominees in Greta Gerwig, Patty Jenkins, and Dee Rees. Gerwig was especially egregious considering how much love Lady Bird is getting. It would have likely been less glaring if not for the ridiculous Ridley Scott nomination. Natalie Portman punctuated this awkward moment by calling out the all male field before the nominees could be read, much to the chagrin of Ron Howard, who did his best to carry on with the announcement of the winner after Portman stole all of the moment’s thunder. The fact that this category followed Oprah’s speech was simply mystifying, and even del Toro appeared to have trouble enjoying his moment. Though it must be said that del Toro was about the only person that could have won that award, and not be glared out of the room, as there was a palpable sense of happiness for him, but you have to wonder if this might be the best it gets for him. Hollywood has a tendency to let narratives build and lead to victories during award season, and, well, Gerwig’s omission could be a rallying call that leads her to pull a reverse Ben Affleck, where she wins everything from this point forward, as opposed to winning everything except for the Oscar.
Oprah is the best.
- Her speech was amazing, and if she wanted to run for President there are worse things (especially considering the alternatives), but, well… just because we all like someone doesn’t mean they need to or should run for President. So, like, Oprah is the best, but let’s leave it at that. Also, maybe we should listen to what she said, and do things ourselves, instead of just hoping Oprah will do them for us.
That is it for now. Stay tuned for a more comprehensive look at the race soon!