So it turns out that even delivering former President Bill Clinton as a Golden Globes presenter isn't enough to persuade the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. to vote for your "brilliant" film.
Does this mean "Lincoln" is no longer the front-runner for the best picture Oscar? Not at all. Even though we're imagining that Tommy Lee Jones kept that death-stare look on his face right through George Clooney presenting the best drama Globe to "Argo," he needn't be that glum. (Yes, we know. He can't help himself. Still.) "Lincoln" was too particularly American to appeal to HFPA voters in the first place. The last three Globes drama winners — "The Descendants," "The Social Network" and "Avatar" — all came up short for the Oscar best picture, with the latter two losing to other dramas. "Lincoln" remains the movie to beat with academy members, who were the ones, by the way, that Clinton was really addressing last night.
Ben Affleck's win for director obviously has no effect on that race for the Oscars, since he wasn't even nominated there, but the thunderous standing ovation he received certainly indicates that his movie remains strongly in play as a best picture alternative to "Lincoln." The HFPA has a history of giving A-list actors the directing prize — stardom always trumps excellence with this bunch — so Affleck's victory over the likes of Steven Spielberg and Kathryn Bigelow wasn't at all a surprise.
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Daniel Day-Lewis was the lone "Lincoln" nominee to win, and he remains a lock for the lead actor Oscar. Hugh Jackman will have to come up with better stories than the ones he told from the stage Sunday night for him to gain any traction with voters. We don't care about your stolen bike wheels, Hugh. And your wife really shouldn't have had to persuade you not to drop out of "Les Miz." What? Were you worried it would cut into your planning time for a "Real Steel" sequel? Find a better narrative.
The lead actress race remains unchanged with the front-runners, Jennifer Lawrence ("Silver Linings Playbook") and Jessica Chastain ("Zero Dark Thirty"), winning Globes in their respective categories. If you're splitting hairs, Chastain delivered a more by-the-book acceptance speech, breathlessly offering thanks and dutifully noting years of dues-paying. Lawrence, meanwhile, looked at her Globe as if examining the inscription, and said, "What does this say? 'I Beat Meryl!'" The line won a few laughs, but we bet Jones wasn't the only one in the room glowering at the jesting boast, either.
Christoph Waltz's win for his turn as the locquacious bounty hunter in "Django Unchained" continues to advance the Austrian actor's late awards-season momentum. At the Oscars, he'll be competing against Jones, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Robert De Niro and Alan Arkin, all of whom, like Waltz, have won Academy Awards. Waltz's chances for an Oscar win are getting better by the day as voters have been enthusiastically responding to his character in "Django," which is essentially a good-guy variation of Col. Hans Landa, the monstrous Nazi he played in Tarantino's "Inglourious Basterds." With the possible exception of Samuel L. Jackson, nobody handles Quentin Tarantino's twisty monologues better than Waltz.
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And yes, Anne Hathaway won the supporting actress Globe for playing dear, tragic Fantine in "Les Miz," and she'll go on to win the Oscar too. Hathaway's inspired shout-out to Sally Field felt like it came from the heart, and that line about the Globe being "this lovely blunt object that I will forevermore use as a weapon against self-doubt" probably took the audience's tear ducts back to the time they first heard Hathaway's "Les Miz" heroine singing about a time gone by when hope was high and life worth living. Now all Hathaway needs to do is come up with a creative use for her Oscar.