Golden Globes 2015: Six lessons from Sunday's ceremony

Can 'Boyhood' cruise to the best director podium or will 'Birdman' derail it?

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler had some solid Bill Cosby and North Korea bits, then, like “The interview’s” box office prospects, magically disappeared. Ricky Gervais tried his Andy Kaufman routine, and almost had us when he tried to re-create an Adele Dazeem moment. (Almost.) George Clooney didn’t actually say that much but said it well, as George Clooney does.

And we’re still not convinced that Kevin Hart didn’t pull a Jack Palance when he read “How to Train Your Dragon 2” and not “The Lego Movie” off the card for best animated feature. Sure, Salma Hayek had plenty of other reasons to look dumbstruck with Hart in that moment, as she did, but that would have been a pretty good one too.

But beyond the telecast, what award-season lessons could be learned from Sunday’s proceedings at the Beverly Hilton? After all, it’s a big week in awards-land -- Directors Guild nominations hit Tuesday, and Thursday morning is the mother of all nominations days, as Oscar haves and have-nots are revealed. Here are six such lessons, in an order more random than the Globes wins for “The Affair.”

“Big Eyes.” As in, what Harvey may still have for the Tim Burton movie after star Amy Adams was the winner for actress in a comedy/musical Sunday. Oscar nomination ballots closed last week, so if Adams didn’t make the cut then — and given how thin the field is, don’t count that out — the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. love won’t put her over the top. The attention won’t help her win an Oscar either — Julianne Moore is a surer bet in the category than a controversial call at a Cowboys game. Still, it’s remarkable how much the HFPA loves Adams. Last year she shocked the rest of the field, winning the actress in a comedy/musical award for her performance in “American Hustle.” In fact, in the last eight years, Amy Adams has gone just two of them without a Golden Globe nomination. Twice! Ricky Gervais himself has appeared at the show less often. Producers, if you’re going to hire Amy Adams, know -- the Globes love is included. Even Lois Lane may not be a stretch.

“Selma” and “Sniper.” Seriously, what’s going on? No, really. They’re two of the most acclaimed movies of this end-of-year madness. They both deal urgently with real-life issues, and the most pressing around: war in the Middle East and racial injustice/tension with the police. Yet the movies keep coming up empty. Ava DuVernay's “Selma” had just one Golden Globe win Sunday, a minor prize for original song. Clint Eastwood’s “American Sniper” didn’t even get any nominations. BAFTA was a non-starter too--even David Oyelowo, offering one of the most acclaimed performances in years as Martin Luther King Jr., couldn’t get any love from his hometown British crowd. These films could still make a move -- and their many fans hope they do. But time is running short.

Directed. The season is now officially “Boyhood’s" for the taking. It’s hard to imagine another movie passing it for best picture, though that won't stop “Imitation Game” and “Selma” from trying. Not so for director, where "Birdman" director Alejandro G. Inarritu is actually a favorite. He’s never won an Oscar, and his latest is an auteur piece to the max, a movie that’s bold thematically and visually. Most important for the Oscars, it’s very clearly the product of one man’s vision and style. DuVernay has a great story to tell too -- not just on screen but in her own rise from studio marketer to indie filmmaker to grand historical storytelling. So does Linklater's win Sunday mean he has the momentum? A little, and it could well be a sign that we’ll see a sweep in the top two categories come Oscar Sunday, not the split we’ve had the last two years. Still, lest it seems like Inarritu and DuVernay are done, consider this: when it comes to best director, the Globes and Oscars have diverged four of the last five years.

The "Grand Budapest" river. It’s been one of the more uncanny stories of this season. A comedy that came out in March, from a director not regularly embraced by the awards mainstream, suddenly getting all this attention. Or at least the attention that matters. Sunday night, Wes Anderson’s “The Grand Budapest Hotel” won exactly one award -- and it was the top prize, best motion picture - comedy or musical. The Globes’ category is a pretty good predictor of Oscar’s best picture field -- the winner has been nominated for Oscar's best picture in each of the last four years. Also newly relevant-- can Anderson work his way into a best director nomination for either the DGA noms Tuesday or the Oscar nominations Thursday? And can he or the movie make a run if they land in said categories? The Globes and the Oscars have entirely different voting bodies. But more than anything else, voters like to vote for a winner, and few things say winner than the Globes’ top prize. For those looking for a check on “Boyhood” power, they may have just found one deep in Andersonville.

“Dragooned.” So, yeah, about that “Dragon 2” win. “The Lego Movie” has been taking all the critics and other prizes. So how did “Dragon 2” -- a movie whose (some would say superior) original didn’t even win a Globe, somehow stage an upset? Maybe voters just didn’t go for the outlandish, pop-cultural and meta-humor of “Lego.” And maybe some Oscar voters feel the same way. “Dragon 2” definitely has a little energy. Still, with all the acclaim and all the money “Lego” has taken in, it’s hard to see it losing the Oscar. And if it does, here’s hoping someone tells us the whole ceremony was a kid’s fantasy.

Fey and Poehler. OK, they're not awards contenders, but it’s nonetheless the end of an era, not only because the duo concluded their three-year residency as Globe hosts Sunday but also because Poehler’s “Parks & Recreation” will, as every third commercial reminded us, be going off the air after this season. Where do the two go now? Fey is back with “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” and despite the weird ride that show has gone on at NBC -- postponed, then shuffled off to Netflix -- hope springs eternal. The pair also try to rekindle the “Baby Mama” magic, and maybe improve on it, with another family-oriented romp when they premiere their odd-couple comedy “Sisters” next December. Here’s to a profitable post-Globes run, and maybe even a best picture comedy/musical nomination in 2016. If Amy Adams doesn't beat them out.

Twitter: @ZeitchikLAT

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