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Best: Tina Fey and Amy Poehler's Opening Monologue
Their material wasn't as solid as last year, but they still landed some devastating blows, satirically speaking. Best lines: Poehler, noting that Woody Allen was following Martin Scorsese as a winner of the Globes' Cecil B. DeMille award for lifetime achievement, inferring that the award must be for "the tiniest man with the biggest glasses." Or Fey, observing that "Gravity" was about "how George Clooney would rather float away in space and die than spend one more minute with a woman his own age." Or Fey, again, remarking on Matthew McConaughey's 45-pound weight loss for his "Dallas Buyers Club" role, "Or, what actresses call 'being in a movie.'"
Best: Jennifer Lawrence's Speech
Did Globe voters pick Lawrence ("American Hustle") over Lupita Nyong'o ("12 Years a Slave") because of her well-established reputation for endearingly awkward moments at the podium? If so, Lawrence delivered. The Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture winner thanked "Hustle" director David O. Russell for shaping her career (he directed her Oscar-winning performance in "Silver Linings Playbook," too) but neglected to say his name. She admitted that she hadn't seen all her rivals' movies. And she rushed through her speech and declared her nervousness, setting the tone for nearly everyone else who won on Sunday night.
Worst: Jacqueline Bisset Getting Played Off
Bisset, who won Best Supporting Actress (TV) for the Starz mini-series "Dancing on the Edge," earned an ovation simply for reaching the stage. Not just because she was sitting so far away from the podium (a recurring problem for winners throughout the evening), but because she's a veteran who was due some Golden Globes love after five nominations over five decades in movies and TV. The 69-year-old tried to bask in the moment, but she got silenced by the seven-second delay for cursing, and then "played off" by the music as her speech ran long. As it turns out, nearly every speech at the 71st Globes ran long enough to be interrupted by music. Sure, winners have to know to keep it short, but Bisset's first win after half a century of trying deserved to play out without interruption or censorship.
Best: Alex Ebert and Diddy
Winning for Best Original Score for "All Is Lost," scruffy alt-rocker Alex Ebert was pleasantly surprised that he knew the presenter: Sean "Diddy" Combs, with whom he'd shared some fun moments on a party yacht in St. Bart's. Guess that was apt for a movie that took place on a small boat.
Best: Robert Downey Jr.
As a presenter, Downey always gives clever speeches, and his intro to the Best Actress in a Motion Picture Comedy was no exception. "No matter whose name is called when I open this envelope, tonight," he said, "I'm leaving here a winner." If Julia Louis-Dreyfus ("Enough Said") won, he said he'd ride her coattails to Fey and Poehler's after-party. If Meryl Streep ("August: Osage County") won, he'd make some green renting her a shipping container for her 200,000 trophies. Since the winner was Amy Adams ("American Hustle,") Downey said he'd get to keep his Gucci tux, as long as he got some racy backstage photos with Adams.
Miss Golden Globes, who helps escort the winners on and off the stage, is always the daughter of celebrity parents. This year, she was Sosie Bacon, 21-year-old daughter of Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick, who proudly introduced her. But then, Fey introduced "Mr. Golden Globes," her son Randy (actually, Poehler, in drag in a tuxedo and wig that made her look like a young Michael J. Fox). Unlike the well-behaved Sosie, Randy behaved like a typically irritated teen who finds his mom an embarrassment. But part of Randy's humiliation came from not knowing which celebrity in the room was his father. He pointed to both Idris Elba and indie mogul Harvey Weinstein, both of whom guffawed at the gag.
Worst: Emma Thompson
Of all the people you'd expect to get sloppy drunk at an awards show, Emma Thompson probably isn't at the top of your list. And maybe she was just doing a bit. Or maybe she wasn't, when she appeared on stage as a presenter (for best screenplay), with a martini in one hand, her shoes in the other. ("Where's the envelope?" she barked at Bacon, as if she had a third hand in which to hold it.) She announced the winner, Spike Jonze ("Her,") then gulped down her cocktail. You stay classy, Emma Thompson.
Worst: Jimmy Fallon and Melissa McCarthy
Presenters Fallon and McCarthy tried to run with a lame gag in which Fallon claimed McCarthy had suffered a head injury backstage and now thought she was Matt Damon. Now, McCarthy is funny and talented, but not even she can milk much humor out of a lame Matt Damon impersonation. (Not that there's such thing as a good Matt Damon impersonation -- have you ever seen one? -- but she didn't even try. Maybe the gag would have worked better with someone easier to spoof.
Best: Amy Poehler and Bono
As the names were being read for Best Actress in a TV Comedy, "Parks and Recreation" nominee Poehler was all over U2 frontman Bono, getting a shoulder massage from the Irish rock icon. When her name was called as the winner, she got to make out with him. Bono's wife, who was there, must be an awfully good sport.
Best: Diane Keaton Pays Tribute to Woody Allen
Wearing a mannish suit with an oversized necktie that might have been Annie Hall's idea of formalwear, Keaton nonetheless paid eloquent tribute to her mentor / ex-lover / frequent director by praising him for the well-rounded female roles he's written. As she did so, the camera panned to many of the actresses who'd played those complicated, fascinating women in his films, including Mariel Hemingway, Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Drew Barrymore, Dianne Wiest, Naomi Watts, and Cate Blanchett. Keaton also celebrated her 45 years of friendship with the Cecil B. DeMille lifetime achievement award winner by singing him a little song. The whole thing was an ideal illustration of why Allen deserved the award and how important he's been to the film community over the decades.
Best: Alfonso Cuaron's Quip
Accepting the Best Director prize for "Gravity," the Mexican filmmaker thanked star Sandra Bullock for not quitting the picture after she misheard him say, in thickly accented English, that he would give her "herpes." Actually, he was trying to say he was giving her an earpiece.
Best: Matthew McConaughey's Speech
The "Dallas Buyers Club" Best Actor in a Motion Picture Drama winner began his speech with a fitting "All right, all right, all right," his first words in his first movie, 1993's "Dazed and Confused." He also thanked all the other actors who had turned down the role over the past 20 years, and he thanked his mom and his wife for keeping him in line and making him go after what he wanted (like this role) instead of just dreaming about it. It was a nice speech, with inspirational advice, from the guy once dismissed as Hollywood's favorite shirtless bongo player.
Worst: No 'In Memoriam' Montage
Don't they do those anymore? Surely all the beloved TV and movie folk who passed away in 2013 deserved a shout-out.
Best: Victory for '12 Years a Slave'
The historical drama got shut out of all the acting, writing, and directing prizes it was up for, yet it still won Best Motion Picture Drama. It was good to see Steve McQueen and the cast of his harrowing film get their due at last, in the final award of the evening.