The night closed with big back-to-back wins for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, Martin McDonagh’s quirky and rather demented small-town dramedy whose triumph seemed far from assured when the night began.
Frances McDormand took Best Actress in a Motion Picture: Drama over formidable competition: Jessica Chastain (Molly’s Game), Sally Hawkins (The Shape of Water), Meryl Streep (The Post), and Michelle Williams (All the Money in the World). Her speech was as tart as the character she played, featuring offers of tequila to her co-nominees, an admission that she wasn’t sure what the Hollywood Foreign Press Association was, and this line: “Her every ragged inhalation and fierce exhalation is evidence of my gratitude.” She also wrapped up the larger theme of the ceremony: “It was really great to be in this room tonight and to be part of the tectonic shift in our industry’s power structure. Trust me, the women in this room tonight are not here for the food. We are here for the work.”
Presenter Barbra Streisand then took to the stage and noted the outrageous fact that no woman had won for Best Director at the Globes since she’d taken the trophy home in 1984 for Yentl. Nevertheless, she seemed thrilled to announce Three Billboards as the winner of Best Motion Picture: Drama over Call Me By Your Name, Dunkirk, The Post, and The Shape of Water. The speech from producer Graham Broadbent was more subdued than McDormand’s. “It had a beautiful heart, it had beautiful people,” he said of Three Billboards. McDonagh didn’t speak, having already had an opportunity to do so when he won Best Screenplay earlier in the night.