New York — Was it really the time for Hollywood to party? A rising tide of dread has swept much of show biz, as with much of the nation beyond: A divided body politic; racial turmoil. Real life is intruding on the manufactured fantasies as it seldom has before.
But Sunday's Globesfest, with Jimmy Fallon hosting, understood the show must go on. And it did, with high spirits, rare efficiency and, out of sight but seldom out of mind, a certain former-TV-star-turned-president-elect.
Things started with a bang. Fallon led a star-studded song-and-dance spoof of the opening musical number from La La Land. But instead of a traffic jam on an LA freeway, the production number staged gridlock by limos backed up for the Globes at the Beverly Hilton.
Watch it here:
A little preferential treatment? Before a single trophy had been given out, the multi-nominated (and soon-to-be-richly-rewarded) La La Land scored a special honour.
Then, as a reminder how the Globes can instantly go haywire, Fallon's TelePrompTer briefly blacked out once he took the stage.
"Already you have your Golden Globes moment," he said, making the most of the flub as he stalled for time.
Back online, Fallon fired off a fusillade of jokes, most of them barbed and several aimed at President-Elect Donald Trump. (Read more here)
But nothing during the long night upstaged the remarks by Meryl Streep, who, humbly and defiantly brought many in the room — and perhaps in many living rooms — to tears as she accepted this year's Cecil B. DeMille Award. (Read more here)
Best comedic moment
The night's most inspired comic moment: Steve Carell and Kristen Wiig, presenting the award for best animated feature, shared recollections of their first times ever seeing an animated film. Carell said he was amazed seeing Fantasia as a kid with his dad. But then, he recalled, in a darkening mood, his mom met them in the lobby and asked his dad for a divorce.
"I never saw my dad again," he said.
For Wiig, it was Bambi — which she said she saw the same day her pet dogs were put down.
"I didn't speak for two years," she confided with a haunted look.
Perfectly performed, with impeccable pacing, the exchanges reduced Carell and Wiig to staring, stricken, into space, as if these preposterously awful memories had swallowed them up.
Watch it here:
The big winners
Damien Chazelle's bright-hued Los Angeles musical La La Land dominated the Beverly Hills, California, ceremony with seven awards — a Golden Globes record — including best motion picture, comedy or musical, further cementing its Oscar favorite status.
But perhaps its stiffest Academy Awards competition, Barry Jenkins' tender coming of age drama Moonlight — which competed largely in separate dramatic categories — took the night's final award, best movie drama. It was the film's only hardware despite six nominations.
La La Land came in with a leading seven nominations, and won everything it was nominated for. Chazelle won both best director and best screenplay. Gosling won best actor in a comedy or musical, as did Emma Stone for best actress. The film also took best score (for composer Justin Hurwitz) and best song for City of Stars.
"I'm in in daze now, officially," said the fresh-faced, 31-year-old Chazelle accepting his award for directing.
In one of the evening's more emotional acceptance speeches, Gosling dedicated his award to the late brother of his partner, Eva Mendes.
"While I was singing and dancing and playing piano and having one of the best experiences I've ever had on a film, my lady was raising our daughter, pregnant with our second and trying to help her brother fight his battle with cancer," said Gosling, referring to Juan Carlos Mendes.
Watch it here:
The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, a collection of 85 members, has its own methods of selecting winners for the Globes. Best supporting actress winner Viola Davis, the co-star of Denzel Washington's August Wilson adaptation Fences, alluded to the group's reputation for being wined and dined.
"I took all the pictures, went to luncheon," said Davis, to knowing chuckles through the ballroom, as she clutched her award. "But it's right on time."
Davis continued what appears to be a certain path to the Oscar. Another favourite, Casey Affleck, also padded his favourite status. The Manchester by the Sea star took best actor.
Coming a year after a second-straight of OscarsSoWhite protests, the night was notable for the widespread diversity of its winners, in film and TV. Donald Glover's Atlanta won best comedy series over heavyweights like Veep and Transparent. Glover later added best actor in a comedy, and looked visibly surprised accepting each.
"I really want to thank Atlanta and all the black folks in Atlanta," said Glover. "I couldn't be here without Atlanta."
Tracee Ellis Ross, accepting the award for best actress in a TV comedy for Black-ish,"dedicated her award to "all of the women of colour and colourful people whose stories, ideas, thoughts are not always considered worthy and valid and important."
"I want you to know that I see you, we see you," said Ross, who was the first black woman to win in the category since Debbie Allen in 1982.
The big upsets
There were some real upsets, none more than the British actor Aaron Taylor-Johnson who took best supporting actor for his performance in Tom Ford's Nocturnal Animals.
It was a surprise that Taylor-Johnson was even nominated, so his win over favorites Mahershala Ali from Moonlight and Jeff Bridges from Hell or High Water was a shock.
As expected, The People v. O.J. Simpson took best miniseries, as well as an award for Sarah Paul And Netflix's Elizabeth II series The Crown won both best drama series and best actress in a drama series for Claire Foy.
But no one looked more surprised to win than Hugh Laurie, co-star of The Night Manager, who took best supporting actor in a limited series or TV film.
Paul Verhoeven's Elle won best foreign language film and its star, Isabelle Huppert, was crowned best actress in a drama. The French actress vowed: "Do not expect cinema to put up walls and borders."
The ceremony included a memorial reel, which was added following the recent deaths of Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher, who were laid to rest Friday in Los Angeles. Streep quoted the latter to end her speech.
"Take your broken heart," said Streep quoting Fisher. "Make it into art."