It seems to me the most foreign aspect of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association is how foreign-thinking they are.
The nominations for the 62nd Annual Golden Globes have been announced and once again, instead of feeling satisfied like I do after seeing a movie I love, I'm left somewhat empty like I am after seeing a movie people rave about and I just don't get what all the fuss was over.
When I was naïve about these things, I used to think the Golden Globe folks were awfully generous to include a musical/comedy category, as it gave actors, actresses, producers, etc., a slew of extra categories in which to be nominated. Instead of just five nominees in each of the major categories, there are actually 10 nominees for best picture, actor and actress because of the additional musical/comedy categories.
After seeing this year's nominations, I now realize that the HFPA wasn't being generous at all. They just couldn't make up their minds about narrowing the nominees down to five. As a matter of fact, in some categories, they can't even pick five and have six nominees instead (like best actor in a television series musical/comedy).
Here are some examples of where things fall apart for me in this year's nominations:
"Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" and "Ray" both got best picture nods in the musical/comedy category. I don't remember ANYTHING funny about "Eternal Sunshine." If anything, it was more disturbing than yuck-yuck funny. And although "Ray" was about a musician and contained a lot of music, it was a biography of Ray Charles and simply one of the most critically acclaimed films of the year.
But in order to include those two films as dramas, they would've had to knock out a few of the contenders in the best drama category like "Kinsey," which was good but not great, or "Closer," which was actor-driven and not an astonishing achievement in film.
There's the Nicole Kidman nomination for best actress in a drama for "Birth," a movie hardly anyone saw and a performance that was far from her Oscar-winning best in years past. But the HFPA LOVES Nicole and it would've given her a nod if she were the lead in "SpongeBob SquarePants."
But by including Kidman among the nominees for best actress in a drama, the members were unable to include Kate Winslet for "Finding Neverland" or Annette Bening in "Being Julia." Winslet and Bening weren't stiffed completely; the HFPA stuck them in that convenient M/C category. The thing is, the Golden Globes are thought to be a hint of things to come at the Academy Awards. Come Oscar time, it's the best five and somebody's -- five bodies, to be exact -- are gonna get hurt.
The most colossal problem with the Golden Globes in my opinion is the big boo-boo of having only one supporting category for actors and actresses. The drama nominees and musical/comedy nominees are bunched together here.
Why? Because they ran out of room on the ballot.
And in the television categories, things get even more convoluted. They squish ALL the supporting performances for actresses and actors into just one category for each. That means if you're in a television drama or comedy, a made-for-TV movie or miniseries, there's only one category for you as actor or actress. So, Drea de Mateo, who appeared for almost an entire season on "The Sopranos," competes against Charlize Theron, who appeared in the HBO movie "The Life and Death of Peter Sellers." It was a great performance, but how do you pit a season against a one-shot deal? The HFPA does.
There are certainly more examples of these inconsistencies, which may mean nothing to the layperson, but stick in the craw of a seasoned entertainment fiend.
It may just be that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association is just one of the many things I don't understand in life, but what else is new?
Fact is, they've been doing things like this for about 62 years, so I'm sure it's not going to change.
And even though I should leave these things alone, the truth is ... neither am I!