President Bill Clinton's appearance provided evidence of the Golden Globes' increasing clout in the film industry.
Jodie Foster: mesmerizing but often incomprehensible.
By Lee Pfeiffer
The Golden Globe Awards are generally criticized for being incomprehensible for most viewers in that they are selected by a relatively tiny group of people known as the Hollywood Foreign Press. There have been jokes on the telecasts themselves that the awards can generally be "purchased" if a studio or nominee invites the right people to the right kind of parties. Despite the criticism, in recent years everyone agrees on this: the Golden Globes telecast is generally a lot of fun and never as dull as the Oscars often are. Unlike Oscar, the Globes cover television as well as motion pictures. Last night's award ceremony was breezy, fast-moving and actually funny, thanks to some good lines delivered by hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. There were some dud jokes, of course, and the usual presenters/winners who pretentiously drop obscenities to prove how hip they are but there was also the novelty of seeing a former President- Bill Clinton- make a surprise appearance to introduce a clip from Lincoln. The main value of the event was to prove that the Globes now serve as more than a forerunner for Oscar winners. They have their own identity, as evidenced by the fact that some of the most deserving artists were nominated for Globes but were snubbed by Oscar. Additionally, while Oscar sometimes trims their honorary awards down to ludicrously short time slots (Jerry Lewis received shabby treatment in this regard a few years ago), the Globes blissfully ignore the stop watch. This was evidenced by the lifetime achievement award given to Jodie Foster, who has spent her entire life in the film business. Looking wonderful at age 50, the accomplished actress and director gave a mesmerizing but often incomprehensible speech in which she joked about "coming out" as a lesbian (she is), explained her obsession for privacy and seemed to imply she was retiring from some aspect of show business, but no one could figure out exactly what she was referring to. Among the surprises was the fact that no one film emerged as a dominating factor, thus ensuring a good deal of suspense across all categories.
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