"Moulin Rouge" -- a musical set in the Paris music halls at the dawn of the 20th century -- won three statues, including one for best musical or comedy movie.
The outcome establishes the two movies as leading contenders for the best picture Oscar, which will be awarded in March. The top Oscar has gone to a Golden Globe winner in all but three of the last 16 years. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association hands the Golden Globe awards out each year.
Russell Crowe won best actor in a drama movie, Jennifer Connelly won for supporting actress and Akiva Goldsman won for best screenplay for "A Beautiful Mind," which came into the night with six Golden Globe nominations.
Crowe expressed admiration for producers taking on a difficult subject for a big budget commercial movie.
"For three studios -- Imagine, Universal and DreamWorks -- to put this kind of money into a movie about a schizophrenia mathematician that's difficult to explain," said Crowe.
Nicole Kidman won best actress in a musical or comedy movie for "Moulin Rouge," which also won best original score for composer Craig Armstrong. Moulin Rouge also came in with six nominations.
No other movie won more than one award.
Sissy Spacek continued her march through the award season, winning for best actress in a drama movie for her performance as a mother coping with the tragic loss of a son in "In the Bedroom."
Spacek who won a an Oscar 21 years ago for her portrayal of country singer Loretta Lynn in "Coal Miner's Daughter," said the recognition she has been receiving for "In the Bedroom" means more to her. "I think the years make it all the sweeter," she said.
Gene Hackman won for best actor in a musical or comedy movie for his portrayal of the patriarch of a dysfunctional family in "The Royal Tenenbaums."
British Actor Jim Broadbent won supporting actor honors for "Iris," and veteran actor Robert Altman won best director for "Gosford Park" -- a murder mystery set in an English country estate, which came in with five nominations.
"No Man's Land" from Bosnia won for best foreign-language film.
"The Lord or the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring" had four nominations but was shut out.
In the TV categories, HBO's Sex and the City" won a third straight Golden Globe for best comedy series, and its star, Sarah Jessica Parker won her second straight trophy for best comedy series actress.
Beyond that, the honors were spread around among many newcomers.
HBO's freshman comedy-drama "Six Feet Under" took the Golden Globe for best drama series. Kiefer Sutherland won for best actor in a drama for the Fox Series "24."
Judy Davis won for best actress in a miniseries or TV movie for her performance in the title role of "Me and My Shadows: Life with Judy Garland." James Franco won best actor in a miniseries or movie for his portrayal of James Dean in the TNT movie named after the '50s movie icon.
Rachel Griffiths of "Six Feet Under" and Stanley Tucci of the HBO World War II movie "Conspiracy" won for best supporting actress and actor, respectively, in a series, miniseries, or TV movie.
Popular favorites were shut out at the Golden Globes.
The NBC comedy "Will and Grace" came in with five nominations. The HBO crime family drama "The Sopranos" and the NBC White House drama "The West Wing" each came in with four nominations. All three series -- which had won Emmys for best comedy or drama series -- came away from the Golden Globes empty handed.
Harrison Ford joined such Hollywood legends as Alfred Hitchcock, Jack Nicholson, Henry Fonda, Clint Eastwood and Betty Davis, as recipients of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association's highest honor the Cecil B. DeMille Award for career achievement.