The Golden Globes, often seen as the precursor to the Academy Awards, featured no major film sweeps, with its awards split among this year's most buzzed about movies. "American Hustle" was the biggest winner of the night, winning for best comedy or musical, and for the performances of Amy Adams and Jennifer Lawrence, nominated for best actress in comedy or musical and supporting actress, respectively. However, "Wolf of Wall Street," its top competitor in the comedy/musical category, claimed a Globe for Leonardo DiCaprio's lead role as a corrupt Wall Street broker, as did sci-fi love story "Her," for best screenplay by Spike Jonze.
Space drama "Gravity" walked away with a best director award for Alfonso Cuarón and "Texas Buyers Club," about the 1980s AIDS crisis, also bagged drama awards for the lead performance of Matthew McConaughey and for Jared Leto in his supporting role. "12 Years a Slave" meanwhile, having tied with "American Hustle" for the most nominations, won only one award, but arguably the night's biggest: best drama.
Director Woody Allen, not present at the Beverly Hills Hilton for the ceremony, also had a good night; he received the Cecil B. DeMille lifetime achievement award (accepted on his behalf by Diane Keaton) and Cate Blanchett won for her lead performance in his latest film "Blue Jasmine."
In the TV categories, "Breaking Bad" emerged as a big winner in its final season, winning best drama and for the lead performance of Bryan Cranston, after years of being snubbed by the Globes. Newcomer "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" also led the television counts, with awards for best comedy and best actor for Andy Samberg, in a surprise to some. Fellow "Saturday Night Live" star Amy Poehler, also the co-host for the evening's ceremony, won for her lead role on "Parks and Recreation," the show's first Golden Globe.
Netflix scored its first Golden Globe with Robin Wright's best actress award in a drama victory in "House of Cards." Jon Voight, another film star who has made the jump into television, won for his supporting role on "Ray Donovan." Jacqueline Bisset won supporting actress for Starz's "Dancing on the Edge."
"Behind the Candelabra" ruled the miniseries categories, winning best miniseries or TV movie and for Michael Douglas' performance as Liberace. Elisabeth Moss was triumphant as well, not for her turn on "Mad Men" (which was notably left out of the nominations), but for her lead role in the Sundance Channel miniseries "Top of the Lake."
The Golden Globes, in their 71st year, are chosen by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, a group of international journalists covering Hollywood's film and television industry. This year's ceremony was hosted by Poehler and Tina Fey in their second stint in the role (they are also signed on for 2015), and, despite a number of speeches that ran into the wrap-up orchestration, the two were able to finish the ceremony in under the three allotted hours.