Story by Glenn Whipp, Tribune News Service
The Golden Globes are over. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler have bade farewell to the Hollywood Foreign Press (All hail Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig as their successors!), Wes Anderson has finished schmoozing with Dagmar, Yukiko, Lorenzo, Armando and Helmut, and Dominic West‘s posterior (“something of great beauty,” notes “Affair” costar Ruth Wilson) has receded from view.
So, who received an award-season bump from the evening? Let’s take a look at all the movies and players that the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. (and North Korea) was OK with.
Another awards show, another best picture win for Richard Linklater’s coming-of-age drama. Many pundits somehow remain convinced that the best picture Oscar race is wide open, but it was apparent in early December that no other movie had the goods to challenge “Boyhood.” It is an overwhelming favorite with the actors branch (you did see presenter Meryl Streep’s ear-to-ear grin, right?), whose members comprise one-fifth of the academy. Actors love the passion behind Linklater’s 12-year project and the idea of living with a character for a dozen years. And unlike a lot of past critics prize winners (“The Social Network”), “Boyhood” connects with viewers on an emotional level. The scene with Patricia Arquette lamenting her son’s departure for college rips out the heart of every empty-nester (yes, another prime academy demographic). “Boyhood” wins in a walk.
After Keaton won for lead actor comedy/musical for “Birdman,” he gave a rambling speech that ended with a surprising, emotional payoff.
“My best friend is kind, intelligent, funny, talented, considerate, thoughtful,” Keaton said, his voice catching. “He also happens to be my son, Sean. I love you with all my heart, buddy.”
Aaaaw. How much does Keaton love his son? He told me in an interview a few weeks ago that he initially wasn’t going to travel to the Venice Film Festival for “Birdman’s” premiere because Sean’s wedding was scheduled immediately afterward. “It was too close,” Keaton said. “If something was to happen and the flight got canceled … no way.”
But Sean Douglas, a successful songwriter, came up with a solution. He asked Keaton if he and his then fiancee, Rachel Bartov, could go to Venice with him. That way if there were any travel complications, obviously, there couldn’t be a wedding.
“It was nice having them captive,” Keaton said. “Then we got back and hit the ground running. The wedding was the next day.”
Keaton already had plenty of people wanting to reward him for both “Birdman” and his career. That speech gave them — and others — another reason to check off his name.
Thanks to the length of Keaton’s speech (and some others — but not you, Billy Bob Thornton), the night’s other lead actor winner, Eddie Redmayne from “The Theory of Everything,” got played offstage. But not before making some meme-worthy, adorbs faces when they announced his name. He also wedged in a personal moment, thanking his wife of all of three weeks for cutting their honeymoon short and then, later, giving her a piggyback ride down Wilshire Boulevard probably because there was no horse and carriage available.
“The Grand Budapest Hotel”
In the past couple of weeks, Anderson’s magnificent movie has picked up nominations from seven guilds — producers, writers, actors, editors, art directors, cinematographers and costume designers. The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) gave it 11 nods, more than any other movie. And Sunday night, it won the Globe for best motion picture, comedy/musical, beating the category’s presumed favorite, “Birdman.”
In short, it looks like “Budapest” will become Anderson’s first movie to land a best picture Oscar nomination. Beyond that, it might actually be the movie best positioned to (sort of) challenge “Boyhood” for the top honors, particularly if Anderson himself is nominated for both director and screenplay. Judging from his hearty applause at the ceremony, we’re guessing frequent Anderson collaborator Bill Murray is on his side. But does Anderson actually have Murray’s phone number? That’s a question above our pay grade.