Golden Globes Recap: Winners and Losers

  • Publish Date: January 18, 2010
  • Comments: ↓ 1 user comment

A predictable evening

Sunday's Golden Globes awards ceremony went mostly as expected: few surprises in the award categories, and little excitement on screen. Below, we recap the evening's winners and losers, and examine the critics' reactions to the broadcast.

Film winners: A big night for Avatar

ImageA dramatic victory

Never underestimate James Cameron. If Avatar wasn't the frontrunner for a best picture Oscar before Sunday night, it probably is now, taking home top honors in the dramatic film category over the favored Up in the Air and, to a lesser extent, The Hurt Locker. Cameron was also named top director over Hurt Locker's Kathryn Bigelow, the predicted winner and Cameron's ex-wife.

There were few upsets that didn't involve the Na'vi (and, let's face it, Avatar's wins weren't all that shocking), as film critics and other experts correctly predicted most of the victors in advance. One minor surprise was Jeff Bridges' acting win for a drama, an award that was expected to go to George Clooney for his work in Up in the Air. The latter movie was probably the biggest loser of the evening, winning only for best screenplay when it appeared that it was destined for more awards.

How good are the Globes as predictors of the Academy Awards? Last year, both the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (which hands out the Globes) and the Academy selected Slumdog Millionaire for top honors. But that was the first time both organizations agreed on the year's best film since 2003 (when they each named the third Lord of the Rings movie). However, Cameron's Titanic did receive both a Globe and an Oscar as the best picture of 1997.

However, the Globes do serve as a useful predictor in other categories. The two organizations have agreed on their choices for lead actor in three of the past four years (but not last year), lead actress in six of the past seven years, and best director in five of the past six years.

This year's actual film winners are listed below, along with the predicted winners.

67th Annual Golden Globes: Film Winners
Category Predicted Winner * Actual Winner
Best Picture - Drama Up in the Air Avatar
Best Picture - Comedy/Musical (no consensus) The Hangover
Lead Actor - Drama George Clooney
Up in the Air
Jeff Bridges
Crazy Heart
Lead Actor - Comedy/Musical Robert Downey, Jr.
Sherlock Holmes
Robert Downey, Jr.
Sherlock Holmes
Lead Actress - Drama Sandra Bullock
Blind Side
Sandra Bullock
Blind Side
Lead Actress - Comedy/Musical Meryl Streep
Julie & Julia
Meryl Streep
Julie & Julia
Supporting Actor Christoph Waltz
Inglourious Basterds
Christoph Waltz
Inglourious Basterds
Supporting Actress Mo'Nique
Precious
Mo'Nique
Precious
Director Kathryn Bigelow
The Hurt Locker
James Cameron
Avatar
Screenplay Jason Reitman & Sheldon Turner
Up in the Air
Jason Reitman & Sheldon Turner
Up in the Air
Original Score James Horner
Avatar
Michael Giacchino
Up
Original Song "The Weary Kind"
Crazy Heart
"The Weary Kind"
Crazy Heart
Animated Feature Up Up
Foreign Language Film A Prophet The White Ribbon

* Predicted Winners represent the consensus of a sampling of expert predictions.

TV winners: Cable wins big (again)

ImageKilling the competition

As it has done at the Emmys in recent years, cable outshone the competition on Sunday night. There were just three wins for the broadcast networks; cable nets collected the other eight trophies, including four wins for HBO and three for Showtime.

Among the winners, there were few surprises. Mad Men and Glee took top honors, but AMC's widely-praised drama and Fox's freshman musical were both heavily favored to win. Perhaps the biggest upset of the evening was that the latter program's Jane Lynch did not take home the trophy for best supporting actress; instead, that honor went to Big Love's Chloë Sevigny. Michael C Hall's victory as lead actor in a drama was also a minor upset, with most experts predicting Mad Men's Jon Hamm or House's Hugh Laurie to win. (Emmy winner Bryan Cranston was not nominated.) Hall, who recently revealed he is undergoing treatment for cancer, did not reference his illness during his short acceptance speech.

This year's actual TV winners are listed below, along with the predicted winners.

67th Annual Golden Globes: Television Winners
Category Predicted Winner * Actual Winner
Best Series - Drama Mad Men Mad Men (AMC)
Best Series - Comedy/Musical Glee Glee (Fox)
Best Miniseries or TV Movie Grey Gardens Grey Gardens (HBO)
Lead Actor - Drama Jon Hamm
Mad Men
Michael C Hall
Dexter (SHO)
Lead Actor - Comedy/Musical Alec Baldwin
30 Rock
Alec Baldwin
30 Rock (NBC)
Lead Actor - Miniseries/Movie Brendan Gleeson
Into the Storm
Kevin Bacon
Taking Chance (HBO)
Lead Actress - Drama (no consensus) Julianna Margulies
The Good Wife (CBS)
Lead Actress - Comedy/Musical (no consensus) Toni Collette
United States of Tara (SHO)
Lead Actress - Miniseries/Movie Drew Barrymore
Grey Gardens
Drew Barrymore
Grey Gardens (HBO)
Supporting Actor John Lithgow
Dexter
John Lithgow
Dexter (SHO)
Supporting Actress Jane Lynch
Glee
Chloë Sevigny
Big Love (HBO)

* Predicted Winners represent the consensus of a sampling of expert predictions.

The telecast: Not enough Gervais

How did British comedian Ricky Gervais perform in his first major awards-show hosting gig, and how was the broadcast in general?

Some critics were appreciative. Hal Boedeker of the Orlando Sentinel called the host "thrillingly impudent," while the Baltimore Sun's David Zurawik opined that "Gervais did not disappoint as host" even as he "made the room uncomfortable with jokes about his genitals and 'buying' a Golden Globe Award." Matthew Gilbert of the Boston Globe called Gervais "a comfortable, irreverent presence" who brought an "infectious" informality to the proceedings, despite the fact that his material was "consistently lazy."

In the mixed camp, Time's James Poniewozik stated that "it was only an OK night for Gervais, considering what he's capable of." Similarly, the Chicago Tribune's Maureen Ryan felt that Gervais "had his moments," but that, while his earlier awards-show appearances were strong,

As the Globes host, Gervais found it more difficult to strike the right tone. His jokes about Colin Farrell's reputation as a hellraiser and about the plastic surgery on display in the room felt as though they'd be written by a somewhat uninspired committee.

Overall, added Ryan, "the event was more restrained and sedate than past Golden Globes ceremonies."

TV Squad's Jane Boursaw felt that "Gervais' hosting skills fell a little flat," while IMDb's resident TV critic Melanie McFarland offered the most dramatic rejection, calling the broadcast "the longest three hours in the history of broadcasting" and adding:

There’s something very wrong when an Emmys telecast, even one hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, outshines a Globes telecast hosted by Ricky Gervais.

The host's most memorable line of the night? The consensus indicates that it was Gervais' introduction of a certain star:

I like a drink as much as the next man, unless the next man is Mel Gibson.

In general, the critics also enjoyed the acceptance speeches from film actors Mo'Nique, Jeff Bridges and Robert Downey, Jr., and were disappointed about the lack of Jay Leno-Conan O'Brien jokes (save for a few very brief references).

At least Harrison Ford only presented an award and didn't host the entire broadcast. More than one critic noted his coma-inducing speech.

What do you think?

What did the HFPA voters get right and wrong? What do these results say about potential Oscar winners? How did Ricky Gervais do as the host? Let us know in the comments section below.

We're sorry, but comments are closed for this article.

Comments (1)

  • Marc Doyle  

    It's great to see a VERY funny movie like The Hangover actually win an award. I didn't think that was ever supposed to happen. I think we need re-votes on Wedding Crashers and Old School.

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