Oppenheimer dominates Golden Globes on poignant Barbie night

 Oppenheimer dominates Golden Globes on poignant Barbie night

Oppenheimer dominates Golden Globes on poignant Barbie night

Christopher Nolan’s drama Oppenheimer, which is about the inventor of the atomic bomb, won the most Golden Globes on January 7. However, Barbie, the other summer blockbuster hit, lost out to Poor Things for best comedy film.

Oppenheimer won five awards, including best drama, best director (Nolan), best score, and acting honors for Robert Downey Jr. and Cillian Murphy.

The three-hour epic about “one of the darkest developments in our history,” produced by Emma Thomas, who also happens to be Nolan’s wife, is “unlike anything anyone else is doing,” according to her husband.

Murphy, who plays brilliant scientist J. Robert Oppenheimer, hailed his “visionary director”, while Downey Jr, portraying the protagonist’s bitter rival, praised the movie as a “masterpiece.”

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In winning best director, Nolan fended off Greta Gerwig, who helmed Barbie – the other half of the “Barbenheimer” phenomenon that grossed a combined US$2.4 billion (S$3.2 billion) last year at the box office.

Turning nostalgia for the beloved doll into a sharp satire about misogyny and female empowerment, Barbie was the leading film heading into the night with nine nominations, but ended the gala with just two prizes.

It won the award for best song, for a tune written by Billie Eilish and her brother Finneas. And as the year’s highest grossing movie, it claimed a newly created trophy for box office achievement.

“We would like to dedicate this to every single person on the planet who dressed up and went to the greatest place on Earth, the movie theatres,” said Margot Robbie, the film’s star and producer.

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“Thank you to all the Barbies and Kens in front of and behind the screen,” added Gerwig.

But Barbie surprisingly lost out on best comedy to Poor Things – a surreal, sexy bildungsroman which also earned Emma Stone best actress for her no-holds-barred turn as Bella Baxter.

“Bella falls in love with life itself, rather than a person. She accepts the good and the bad in equal measure, and that really made me look at life differently,” said Stone.

After an annus horribilis in which the industry was crippled by strikes, A-listers turned out in force to celebrate Sunday.

Stars who were unable to promote their movies during the months-long Screen Actors Guild (SAG-AFTRA) walkout used the occasion to make up for lost time on the Oscars campaign trail.

Along with movie stars like Leonardo DiCaprio, attendees included big names from the world of music such as Bruce Springsteen and Dua Lipa – both nominated for best song – and Taylor Swift representing her recent concert movie.

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“The big difference between the Golden Globes and the NFL – on the Golden Globes, fewer camera shots of Taylor Swift,” joked host Jo Koy.

The ongoing hype surrounding “Barbenheimer”, even months after the films’ releases, is a welcome boon to the new owners of the high-profile but consistently scandal-dogged Golden Globes.

Private investors including US billionaire Todd Boehly purchased the awards after years of controversy and declining audiences, and have invested heavily in resetting a night once billed as “Hollywood’s biggest party”.

The Globes were boycotted by the industry after allegations of corruption and racism rose to the surface in 2021, and the show was taken off air entirely a year later.

Since then, a larger pool of foreign critics was brought in to select this year’s winners, replacing the contentious group of foreign journalists based in Los Angeles that founded the Globes eighty years ago.

Downey Jr. thanked the Golden Globes journalists for “changing your game” as he accepted his award.

The Oscars benefit from a timely boost from the Globes. The Oscars are held this year on March 10; nominations for the awards go live on Thursday.

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Native American performer Lily Gladstone, who won best actress in a drama for her part in Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon, spoke part of her moving speech in Blackfeet Nation dialect.

“This is an historic win, it doesn’t belong to just me,” she said.

“This is for every little res kid.”

Paul Giamatti and Da’Vine Joy Randolph bolstered their Oscars campaigns with wins for The Holdovers, in which they starred as a curmudgeonly history teacher and cook of a 1970s prep school, respectively.

Best screenplay and best non-English language film went to French courtroom drama “Anatomy of a Fall.”

That film’s director and co-writer Justine Triet said she had assumed that “nobody is going to see this movie” about “a couple fighting, suicide, a dog vomiting… I mean, come on!”

“This movie is about the truth, the impossibility of catching it,” she added.

Hayao Miyazaki’s The Boy And The Heron won best animated film.

The Globes also honour television.

Succession (2018 to 2023) dominated, claiming best drama series, and acting wins for stars Kieran Culkin, Sarah Snook and Matthew Macfadyen.

The Bear swept the comedy categories, while road-rage saga Beef did the same in limited series.

Past Globes host Ricky Gervais, who did not attend, won best stand-up comedy performance, a new category. AFP

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“This is an historic win, it doesn’t belong to just me,” she said.

“This is for every little res kid.”

Paul Giamatti and Da’Vine Joy Randolph bolstered their Oscars campaigns with wins for The Holdovers, in which they starred as a curmudgeonly history teacher and cook of a 1970s prep school, respectively.

Best screenplay and best non-English language film went to French courtroom drama “Anatomy of a Fall.”

That film’s director and co-writer Justine Triet said she had assumed that “nobody is going to see this movie” about “a couple fighting, suicide, a dog vomiting… I mean, come on!”

“This movie is about the truth, the impossibility of catching it,” she added.

Hayao Miyazaki’s The Boy And The Heron won best animated film.

The Globes also honour television.

Succession (2018 to 2023) dominated, claiming best drama series, and acting wins for stars Kieran Culkin, Sarah Snook and Matthew Macfadyen.

The Bear swept the comedy categories, while road-rage saga Beef did the same in limited series.

Past Globes host Ricky Gervais, who did not attend, won best stand-up comedy performance, a new category. AFP

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