Monday, January 17, 2011

Golden Tarnished Globe

Who are these stars and where was I when they became household names? I kept waiting for Judy Garland (still dead) or Mickey Rooney (still alive) to put on a show?

Should I really care which films, series, mini-series and maxi-series are admired by the foreign press in Albania or Tasmania? Do the folks living in those places even care?

Was it noteworthy that The King's Speech, about British royalty, got nosed out by the American royalty of San Jose? The former is yesterday's news and the winner is today's. I can only surmise that this clandestine group of foreign journalists were teenagers ten years ago.

The Golden Globe awards are the product of about eighty people, as opposed to 6,000 in the Academy. Their identity is well-guarded. According to some detractors the membership knows more about hors d'oeurves than auteurs. Few of them are actually film critics or in any creative art. Neither Le Monde, the British Guardian or Haaretz are represented. Many are free-lancers for mostly obscure publications. Only four articles per year are required of them.

In a sense both films were about media, understandably a favorite topic of other media. Radio was the new-fangled communication of the thirties. Imagine being His Majesty with a speech defect and Henry Higgins nowhere in sight. Hitler had no trouble spitting and screaming into the microphone. FDR mastered it to better use as did Ma Perkins, the Lone Ranger and Sen. Claghorn; even the Shadow and Charlie McCarthy got the handle.

Fortunately for stutterers Facebook knows no such obstacles. Suddenly you realize you have 400 close friends whom you wouldn't recognize if you met them in an elevator. You can now tell the world whether your spaghetti and meatball measures up, bite by bite.

The other movie which came away with laurels was The Kids Are Alright which was produced by the husband of the daughter of my dear college friend and his wife .....along with 35 other people. I found it a very well-acted story of a lesbian couple with children via sperm donation. I thought Mark Ruffulo stole the show as the nuanced donor character. Another film very Now which, come to think of it, Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney couldn't have managed.

The Golden Globes are a triumph of hype over art. Nothing new about that but at least the Academy Awards have a broader voting base with industry people weighing in. Hollywood loves to celebrate itself and millions of us tune in to the party. Awards, lists, winners all help us to bring the illusion of order on an otherwise messy life.


  1. Not a word about the asshole who "hosted" the overlong show.

  2. I muted most of him and tured a deaf ear to the rest but I understand that what he was mocking deserved to be mocked... the organization, that is, not the actors.

  3. It seemed to me he mocked nothing but the actors.

  4. He insulted the president of the Foreign Press group but struck out with too broad a brush.