I Haven't Reviewed the Globes...
That glowing compliment came with a backhanded chaser, so here's one more nice thing: I guess it's kind of fun that we have no idea who the Best Picture winner at the Oscars will be. And here's a third: genius composer Alexandre Desplat won a well-deserved honor last night, and I even predicted his success, so my happiness for him comes accessorized with bragging rights for myself. Sublimity. I don't care about the TV awards, but America Ferrara classed up the joint and made everybody cry. Lastly, Emily Blunt looked fabulous, even though she sounded... a little... odd.
From there onward, it sours. Dypso stars who were boring drunks or nasty drunks or stupid drunks instead of what the Globes are designed to provide: fizzy, charming drunks. A raft of uninspiring winners. (If that patchy, repetitive script of The Queen rakes in one more prize...) A disappointing moment in the spotlight from Forest Whitaker, though I can at least respect a modest man who gets overcome by this much adulatory attention, this late in an admirable career. Still, he is an actor. Whip it together, Forest! And you, too, John Lasseter, hollering "Animation is awesome!" as though you're Napoleon Dynamite minus the irony, and as though Cars were anything but a well-made and well-intentioned Pixar film minus the cleverness and the warmth.
The night's worst moment by far offered us brand-new evidence that America's "beloved" and "classy" and "decent" Tom Hanks is not above asking for a show of hands of Warren Beatty's past lovers, right there in front of his wife. (One insanely old Hollywood joke + one deeply insensitive and sexist ploy + a head that has literally, visibly swollen + a thousand childish invocations of the word "balls" = can someone please fire Tom Hanks?) Mirren and Hudson barreled onward as surefire Oscar bets despite a proficient but finally uninteresting characterization from the former and, from the latter, a striking and often powerful vocal recital stitched to a stolid, wholly uninteriorized performance. Jennifer Hudson is a formidable singer, a cheering and pretty incredible success story, and from all appearances a very nice and decent person, but is she any more suited to the screen than Julia Roberts was to the stage? Shouldn't some acting be involved in a prize-winning acting performance?
My inner grouch gets grouchier when it comes to the fashions, since even the anointed favorites of the night (bland but fussy Felicity Huffman, pretty but way way way too pink Drew Barrymore, Mattel-inspired Reese Witherspoon) left me cold, cold, cold.
Either last night was a notably joyless and slipshod Globes ceremony, or, as Sandra Bernhard said, "The critics are right; I am a petty, bilious girl." Perhaps both. For me, the question is this: if the Globes got me down this bad, how can I anticipate February 25 with anything beyond dread, or worse, a casual indifference? Have I been hijacked into some anti-Oscar deprogramming regimen without realizing it? Is this what it feels like to wander from the flock?