Last night marked the 68th annual Golden Globe Awards, when all of Hollywood gets together to pat each other on the back and bask in television and cinematic accomplishments. But unlike the Oscars, where red carpet hooplah quickly dissolves into looks of boredom as stars are trapped in their seats for hours, the Globes is an alcohol-fueled romp. This is the ceremony where the who's who of Hollywood are divided amongst tables, liberally showered in booze and able to mill about saying hello to friends and foes. There's no flashy dance numbers and shenanigans to entertain -- and sometimes not even a host, though for the last few years, there's been a generous roasting by Brit funny man Ricky Gervais.
Between booze and buffoonery, does that make all the difference in the growing antipathy towards award programs?
This year, Ricky Gervais came back to host for the second year in a row, and for what will likely be his last year. His initial plan was to up last year's quip against Mel Gibson by coming on-stage as Adolph Hitler and delivering the punchline: "That's the last time I borrow a suit from Mel Gibson." When he told Globes organizers his plan, they shot him down.
But obviously he didn't tell them all the jokes. Last night he ribbed Scientologists to a gasping crowd, introduced Bruce Willis as "Ashton Kutcher's dad," took the easy Charlie Sheen joke, panned 'The Tourist' a few times and even acknowledged the growing drama about the HFPA accepting bribes. The Los Angeles Times described the audience as "palpably discomfited." Robert Downey Jr. even took his opportunity on-stage to address Gervais' jokes: "Aside from the fact that it's been hugely mean-spirited with mildly sinister undertones, I'd say the show's going pretty good so far, wouldn't you?" Then Gervais disappeared for a large section of the show, and HFPA President Philip Berk wouldn't comment on whether the comedian would ever be asked back. Poll: Ricky Gervais: Mean or Hilarious?
(Check out a video compiled of Gervais' best jokes below, via Vulture)
On the booze side of things, Christian Bale looked to be in the adoring, loving phase of drunkenness -- maybe being paired with the other mid-production ranter David O. Russell calmed him -- and Robert De Niro looked like he wanted to be the funny man of the night, but just came off awkward and perhaps a wee bit tipsy (did he even read the speech that was written for him beforehand?). Though he does get kudos for taking the time to admit that his latest 'Fockers' flick was nothing more than crap he gets a paycheck for.
This is also the ceremony where Natalie Portman called Mila Kunis "sweet lips," RDJ joked about sleeping with all the Best Actress contenders and Paul Giamatti raved about marrying three hotties in 'Barney's Version.'
Are platters of libations and a diminished filter of appropriateness the key to a great awards ceremony? They certainly help for a night plagued by complaints of bribery, and a pool of winners that many complain about. This is, after all, the ceremony that thought two Johnny Depp performances were better than every other comedy or musical to hit screens this year.
The Golden Globes: Are they perfect as is, or is there time (and room) for a change? And if so, what would you change?
More on the Golden Globes
Full List of Golden Globes Winners
Cinematical's Golden Globes Live Blog