The list of nominees for the 64th Golden Globe Awards confirms what everyone already knew: This year's Oscars are a race between The Departed, Dreamgirls, Babel and Clint Eastwood's World War II combo Flags of Our Fathers/Letters From Iwo Jima.
Other than that, though, the Globes remain as trivial as ever. It's not just that the Hollywood Foreign Press - that mysterious, shadowy group of "journalists" who give out the awards - is made up of people no one has ever heard of before, thus rendering their verdicts meaningless. It is also that with so many categories in the competition, the Globes spread themselves too thin. It's like watching a prizefight where both of the contenders get to take home the belt.
At least the Globes telecast (which will air at 8 p.m. on Jan. 15 on NBC) tends to be livelier and zippier than the bloated Academy Awards broadcast. It would be amusing to see Sacha Baron Cohen win the Best Actor/Musical or Comedy trophy for Borat, and I'd actually pay money (like around $20) to hear Mel Gibson's acceptance speech if Apocalypto happened to win the award for Foreign Language film. Hey, it could happen.