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Golden Globes Reveals Gracious Leo DiCaprio & Lady Gaga But Acrid Ricky Gervais – Review

The act — or was it real? — grew tiresome even before the end of Ricky Gervais’ comparatively brief, zinger-laden monologue launching the 73rd Golden Globes on Sunday. His quiver of zingers was full as the sour comic scorched Jennifer Lawrence on equal pay for women, NBC for lacking nominees, Jeffrey Tambor for the size of his gonads, the former Bruce Jenner for doing little for the cause of women drivers and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for, I guess, existing. Indeed, one theme the host returned to several times within the opening speech and throughout the program (which went several minutes beyond its three-hour allotment) fell flatter than all the rest: The Golden Globe, he insisted, “That award is, no offense, worthless.”

That is a screechy old saw to play, and the audience was having none of it. Not only because of the number of real surprises among the awards — two for Amazon’s Mozart In The Jungle (who would have imagined a show with a classical music hook could win anything these days?); oneSylvester Stallone for Sir Colin Callender’s magnificent production of Wolf Hall, shown here on public television; another for Sly Stallone, who got the Lazarus of the Year award, rising from the rocky depths to win best supporting actor (for Creed) and being rewarded with a rousing salute from the audience; and Aaron Sorkin’s screenplay win for Steve Jobs, a film that faded behind the autumn burst of Spotlight, Carol, The Revenant, The Hateful Eight and others. But also because, despite the sea of bleeps that kept the viewing audience in the dark about some of the ruder moments and left a lot of dead air, there was plenty of human feeling in evidence as well.

“Pain is temporary, film is forever,” said Alejandro G. Iñárritu, accepting his directing award for The Revenant, which also had a superb weekend at the box office. He concisely recapped the difficulties of filming the epic tale of man versus bear and other unruly natural assets, and was more than matched by Leonardo DiCaprio near the end of the ceremony. Accepting his award, DiCaprio paid tribute to the people of the First Nations and indigenous peoples essential to the story and to the making of the film. “It is time,” he said, “that we heard your voices and protect this planet for future generations.”

Lady GagaLady Gaga, a newcomer to these soirees and winner for her role on American Horror Story: Hotel, seemed even humbler here than she is in concert with Tony Bennett. Looking like a million bucks — hard to believe this is the same woman who a few years back was inspiring snark about her gender — she said, “I feel like Cher in that John Patrick Shanley film Moonstruck. This is the best moment of my life. … You help me explore my creativity in ways I never could.” That struck me as extra noteworthy for having the class not only to connect with the film but to acknowledge who wrote it.

Tom Hanks had only slightly-too-windy words in praise of Denzel Washington, receiving the Cecil B. DeMille Award for his work, and Washington himself might have given more thought to his speech, but it was nice to see an honoree bring his family up there onstage with him. Both Taraji P. Henson (who handed out cookies as she approached the podium in honor of the matriarch she plays on Empire) and director Ridley Scott (winning for The Martian) told the orchestra to shove it when they got the hook for going on too long. “I waited 20 years for this — you gonna wait,” said Henson, nodding to the pit. Scott was more succinct. “Screw you,” he offered.

Weirdness was delivered by Jamie Foxx, presenting for best score and announcing Straight Outta Compton as the winner and then begging forgiveness when the true winner was 87-year-old Ennio Morricone for The Hateful Eight. Was Foxx sampling Steve Harvey, or making a comment about the overlooked history-of-rap film? I thought it was the latter.

For his part, Gervais got lamer as the evening wore on, and his routine with Mel Gibson was especially bilious on both their parts (sample: Gervais, coming up with “one good thing” to say about Gibson: “I’d rather have a drink with him tonight in his hotel room than with Bill Cosby.” Gibson: “I love seeing Ricky every three years. It reminds me to get a colonoscopy.”)

It went downhill from there. The final words heard on the telecast were from Gervais: “From myself and Mel Gibson, Shalom.” Very classy. I preferred the dead air.

  1. Gervais did exactly what he was hired to do. The HFPA knows that they are a silly, corrupt little cabal, but they also know exactly how much cred the industry gives them anyway in the pecking order of awards season. They are much like Trump and Cruz: they know they are criminals, but they don’t care because people still crave the crack they are selling anyway.

    1. “They are much like Trump and Cruz”

      Please use the latest shorthand duo, “El Chapo and Sean Penn”. It’s been more than 24 hours!

    2. Golden Globes ? They are indeed corrupt – we know that. The Hollywood Foreign Press have long been a joke. Is CAA’s Hylda Queally not just even a little embarrassed that her client Kate Winslet got a Globe for Steve Jobs

    3. Jim Carrey was PERFECT. I laughed out loud at his delivery (was it scripted?) Regardless it was spot on, PERFECT.

  2. The crowd was laughing. Ricky was fun. Honest. Hollywood Limousine Liberals take themselves way to seriously. Don’t join them Jeremy. They were jokes. Some didn’t play, sure, but the guy is funny.

  3. I thought Ricky was f**king HILARIOUS!!!!!! I’m still laughing at his jokes about Mel Gibson, NBC, and Roman Polanski. The Tambor stuff did cross the line, but who cares? The beauty of this comedian is that he doesn’t give a crap about ceremony and ritual. We all know what a farce this is and Ricky calls it for what it is. Keep bringing the guy back and I’ll keep watching!

  4. Glad the person who wrote this article doesn’t speak for everyone because I thought Ricky was hilarious. He was definitely more calmer compared to past Golden Globes, but he was still funny and made the show work.

    Only problem with the show was the constant censoring and quick pace. I understand they only have a certain amount of time, but you need to be able to give people more than 15 seconds for their acceptance speech.

    1. NBC standards and practices should have cut out more from disgustingly foul-mouthed and foul-minded host. Thank goodness they kept the public airwaves clean of some of his and others’ inexcusable language, in prime time no less. ADD types in orchestra pit need to mellow out. Tom Hanks and Leonardo DeCaprio both made intelligent and articulate remarks. Especially liked LDC appeals for First Nations peoples and the endangered environment of our home planet. Very disappointed that neither Matt Damon nor The Martian film director Ridley Scott spoke out for much more robust NASA space exploration budget and effort and for getting humans to Mars for real, once expected by late 1970s or early 1980s, and now we cannot even get astronauts back to Earth’s Moon. Women at these events need to learn to dress with proper modesty instead of like sorry pieces of trash. Far too many commercials aired. Should have included IN MEMORIAM tribute segment. Some history of the awards would have added quality perspective too. HFPA should ban alcohol at this televised event also. — Alfred Robert Hogan, M.A. (television historian among other hats)

      1. Good lord, who elected you President of the Moral Majority? Your prudish, scolding comments are incredibly out-moded and out of touch with the times. Why do you watch if you don’t enjoy the “foul” language, “trashy” gowns and tipsy actors? Come on. You know you love that stuff. I’m hoping you’re kidding-and I laughed out loud at your pompous “Television Historian among other hats” sign off. Ugh.

      2. What a sanctimonious toad you are. Corse language only causes harm if you allow it to. Broadcast TV is WAY to sanitized as it is an does not reflect really life. Get over yourself.

    2. As someone said, Gervais did what was expected. And he’ll be back next year.

      As for Denzel and his non-speech. I am totally confused why actors can’t speak without a script. He seemed ill – prepared, and just didn’t impress me as being prepared. Sidney Poitier — have a talk with your mentee please!

  5. “Was Foxx sampling Steve Harvey, or making a comment about the overlooked history-of-rap film? I thought it was the latter.”

    You thought wrong.

  6. There were a few comments I wish Ricky had deleted but overall he was hilarious! And you’re wrong, the crowd seemed to love it. They sure were at least smiling during his quips.

  7. Ricky sounds like exactly what the doctor ordered – making fun of loadmouth pampered fake feminists and trans-celebs (or celebs in trans-roles – whatever) is pretty bold considering the PC culture in Hollywood…

  8. Omg comments. It’s just an article. It’s just an awards show. Really. The people there laughed at funny.
    Applauded for greatness.
    we were glad the event was shared by being on tv.

  9. You couldn’t be more wrong if you made an effort to be. Ricky Gervais was hilarious last night and some of the very moments you single out were priceless. And really, if you are so tunnelvisioned to not understand that Foxx was parodying Steve Harvey at Miss Universe, well, I see no hope for you.

  10. You think Gaga’s speech was classy?? It was so self-indulgent, particularly the bit about the cast allowing her to shine. I was embarrassed.

  11. I have the sad suspicion that at some point during the show, Ricky had found out about the death of David Bowie, and that likely contributed to his increasingly bleak behavior during the broadcast. Bowie had appeared on “EXTRAS” and from many reports they were good friends, so it is plausible the family notified him before going public. The fact that he kept stressing “these mean nothing” would fit the narrative of someone who’s lost a good friend yet cannot go public with the news yet.

  12. I thought Ricky was funnier than I recall from previous shows. Wish he’d done even more. Love his sign-off that many missed, saying “shalom” to Mel Gibson. Yes, the speeches were too long, thanking all kinds of people the general public neither know nor care about, but that pretty much always happens. Regardless, lots of folks work very hard to try to make it entertaining and worthless or not, the awards have meaning to the recipients and often lend more excitement to other awards shows, especially the Oscars. The Oscars are very political also, by the way. Apparently, it can’t be avoided.

  13. The Golden Globes were a dispiriting spectacle this year compared to the Tina & Amy years. I hope they have the good sense not to re-hire the tired Ricky Gervais, the Insult Dog, act.

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