Golden Globes: Jokes, awards on point, but show is all over the place

Tina Fey here, Amy Poehler there and nominees everywhere as the HFPA takes some heat and promises to clean up its act.

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Tina Fey, in New York, pretends to reach across the split screen to touch Golden Globes co-host Amy Poehler, in Beverly Hills, California, during the Sunday awards ceremony.


It didn’t take long for Golden Globes co-hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler to address the white elephant in the room.

With Poehler at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, and Fey at the Rainbow Room in New York City, the opening monologue included the following explainer:

Poehler: “The Golden Globes are awards given out by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.”

Fey: “The Hollywood Foreign Press Association is made up of around 90 professional, no-Black journalists who attend movie junkets each year in search of a better life. We say, ‘around 90’ because a couple of them might be ghosts, and it’s rumored that the German member is just a sausage that somebody drew a little face on.”

Three feet apart or 3,000 miles apart, Fey and Poehler are awards-show-host first ballot Hall of Famers.

In a move born out of necessity, the Golden Globes were a bicoastal affair for the first time in its colorful and sometimes rocky 78-year history, with Poehler out West and Fey back East, and the nominees scattered everywhere — which isn’t a bad deal for the hopefuls, because if you win you can turn off the video chat and commence to partying, and if you lose you don’t have to stick around the Beverly Hilton for the rest of the night, keeping a smile pasted on your face and waiting for the next round of champagne.


Daniel Kaluuya, honored for playing Fred Hampto in “Judas and the Black Messiah,” couldn’t be heard at first as he accepted the Golden Globe for best supporting movie actor.


With the Globes under fire for its lack of a single Black member and for excluding Black films such as “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” “Da 5 Bloods,” “One Night in Miami” and “Judas and the Black Messiah” from best picture nominations, it was something of a welcome surprise when the first two winners of the night — both very deserving — were Daniel Kaluuya (“Judas and the Black Messiah”) for best performance by an actor in a supporting movie role and John Boyega (“Small Axe”) for best performance by an actor in a television supporting role. On Twitter, Scott Feinberg of the Hollywood Reporter noted, “We’re 15 minutes in and this year’s Golden Globes has two more Black winners than Black voters.”

With a safely limited amount of first responders and essential workers as the in-person attendees (a nice touch), it didn’t take long for the Globes to fall prey to the same types of snafus and stumbles we’ve all experienced in the Video Chat Era. When Kaluuya was announced as the winner, we couldn’t hear him at first. And as Catherine O’Hara (“Schitt’s Creek”) gave her acceptance speech, her husband Bo Welch kept playing with his cell phone, which seemed to be blaring the kind of “wrap it up” music we hear at awards shows. Whatever the joke was supposed to be, it lost everything in translation.


As winner Catherine O’Hara of “Schitt’s Creek” spoke, her husband Bo Welch did some cell phone shtick.


The telecast was also filled with fantastically awkward and therefore entertaining reaction shots, e.g., Poehler cracking, “ ‘The Undoing’ was a sexy and dramatic mystery where Nicole Kidman’s coat is suspected of murdering her wig,’ ” followed by a shot of Kidman, her husband Keith Urban and their two daughters at home, with Urban cracking up, Kidman looking confused and the girls looking like they just wanted to get back to texting with their friends.

We also had some pretty cool video moments, as when David Fincher (“Mank”) reacted to losing out on best director to Aaron Sorkin (“The Trial of the Chicago 7”) by taking a shot of an adult beverage, and when winner Mark Ruffalo (“I Know This Much is True”) gave a heartfelt and moving speech about the world coming together.


In the top center screen, Andra Day of “The United States v. Billie Holiday” reacts to winning the award for best actress in a drama movie.


As for the actual awards: There were no great shocks, though it was a definite upset when Andra Day won (deservedly so) for “The United States vs. Billie Holiday,” and a bit of a surprise, at least to Jodie Foster, when she won best supporting actress for “The Mauritanian,” it was great to see Foster with her wife and their pup as she thanked Aaron Rodgers — yep, Green Bay Packer Aaron Rodgers. (Shailene Woodley, Foster’s co-star in “The Mauritanian,” is engaged to Rodgers, who gave a shout-out to Foster in his NFL MVP acceptance speech.) It’s difficult to argue against such choices as the aforementioned Kaluuya and Boyega, “Schitt’s Creek” and Catherine O’Hara, “Soul,” Jason Sudeikis, “Minari” Rosamund Pike, Anya Taylor-Joy, “Nomadland” and the late Chadwick Boseman, who was honored for his transcendent work in “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.” (Oscar is next.)

In recent weeks, the HFPA also has come under fire after Los Angeles Times reports about members attending a lavish set visit junket for “Emily in Paris” and then giving the lightweight show two nominations.

Perhaps the association will make some major and long-overdue changes in the near future. HFPA president Ali Sar promised a “more inclusive future” during the telecast, adding, “That means creating an environment where diverse membership is the norm, not the exception. … We look forward to a more inclusive future.”

If those changes aren’t swift and widespread, it might be time for the Globes to stop spinning, at least as a major television event.

Here are the winners from Sunday night:

Best drama film: “Nomadland.”

Best musical or comedy film: “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm.”

Best TV drama series: “The Crown.”

Best TV comedy or musical series: “Schitt’s Creek.”

Best movie actress, drama: Andra Day, “The United States v. Billie Holiday.”

Best movie actor, drama: Chadwick Boseman, “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.”

Best movie actress, comedy/musical: Rosamund Pike, “I Care a Lot.”

Best movie actor, comedy/musical: Sacha Baron Cohen, “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm.”

Best animated movie: “Soul.”

Best foreign language film: “Minari.”

Best supporting movie actress: Jodie Foster, “The Mauritanian.”

Best supporting movie actor: Daniel Kaluuya, “Judas and the Black Messiah.”

Best movie director: Chloé Zhao, “Nomadland.”

Best movie screenplay: Aaron Sorkin, “The Trial of the Chicago Seven.”

Best original score: Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, Jon Batiste, “Soul.”

Best original song: “Io Si (Seen),” from “The Life Ahead.”

Best actress, TV drama series: Emma Corrin, “The Crown.”

Best actor, TV drama series: Josh O’Connor, “The Crown.”

Best actress, TV comedy/musical series: Catherine O’Hara, “Schitt’s Creek.”

Best actor, TV comedy/musical series: Jason Sudeikis, “Ted Lasso.”

Best TV limited series or movie: “The Queen’s Gambit.”

Best actress, TV limited series or movie: Anya Taylor-Joy, “The Queen’s Gambit.”

Best actor, TV limited series or movie: Mark Ruffalo, “I Know This Much Is True.”

Best actress, TV supporting role: Gillian Anderson, “The Crown.”

Best actor, TV supporting role: John Boyega, “Small Axe.”

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