We were warned not to miss a moment of Jimmy Fallon’s Golden Globes opening number, which some had accurately predicted would be an extended tribute to “La La Land.” And why not? Damien Chazelle’s charming movie musical naturally lends itself to the kind of elaborately parodic sing-song re-creations that awards-show openers (to say nothing of Fallon’s late-night hosting career) thrive on.
Sure enough, the show’s big kickoff number found Fallon staging an elaborate riff on “La La Land’s” traffic-stopping opening sequence, for which he roped in a dizzyingly random range of performers from Nicole Kidman and Amy Adams to Kit Harington, Rami Malek and the “Stranger Things” kids (plus Barb). It was funny, clever, virtuosic. It also sent a worrying early signal that the decks were already being stacked in favor of the night’s biggest crowd-pleaser.
I get it — a “Hacksaw Ridge”-themed musical number just wouldn’t have killed in quite the same way. And few of those watching could have begrudged the expected lead acting awards for the film’s luminous stars, Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, or the dual wins for composer Justin Hurwitz, who was feted for his infectiously hummable original score and the movie’s signature tune, “City of Stars.”