Competing for ‘Best Picture’

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86OscarStatuetteccForrest Gump. Titanic. The Godfather.
What do these films have in common – other than being landmarks in motion picture history?
All have won “Best Picture” at The Academy Awards.
With the show less than a month away, the race for the night’s most coveted award is on!
All of the films listed below are worthy contenders to receive the award, but like 2003’s “Best Picture” said: “One ring to rule them all.”
In this case, the ring would be “movie.”
So which movie will “rule them all?”
No one knows quite yet, but here’s a look at each nominee and their odds of snatching the award.

12 YEARS A SLAVE
This is a serious contender for winning the award. It has already won “Best Drama” at the Golden Globes.
And aside from that, there aren’t many reasons why it wouldn’t win. It’s already being deemed a “classic” by film critics.

AMERICAN HUSTLE
This had one of the best ensemble casts from a film in the last year. And all of its players delivered fun and exciting performances to watch.
The film’s tone is too similar to last year’s winner “Argo,” so The Academy might want to shake things up this year. Aside from “Gravity,” “Hustle” garnered the most nominations.
Don’t count this film out.

CAPTAIN PHILLIPS
This was an enthralling film that was carried by Tom Hanks’ amazing performance as Richard Phillips.
This film has deserved its place among the other nominees, but I would not say this has a strong chance of winning.
Too many pirates out in the sea for this film to reach its prized destination.
DALLAS BUYERS CLUB
A deeply emotional film that provided both Jared Leto and Matthew McConaughey their best performances.
This film will most likely squash the competition in the acting categories, but I can’t see this film taking away the award.

GRAVITY
This gripping space adventure will most likely dominate in the technical categories, already securing a couple awards under its galactic belt.
But winning “Best Picture” is another story … because well, more story is what this film might have needed to be worthy.

HER
This unique love story between a man and his computer makes “Her” stick out like a sore thumb among the rest of the nominees.
Despite its “dark horse” status, the film’s beautiful cinematography and script makes this film a worthy contender to win.

NEBRASKA
Director Alexander Payne is no stranger to the Academy Awards. And this film will go down as one of his best works, but competition is too stiff this time around.
The photography is immaculate and it’s definitely one of the best-looking nominees, but it hasn’t garnered enough buzz to support a win.

PHILOMENA
Much like “Nebraska,” this film hasn’t developed a strong presence in the media.
It’s unfortunate to see such a touching and powerful film being swallowed whole by the rest of the competition, but hopefully its nomination will raise awareness for this underrated movie.

THE WOLF OF WALL STREET
Frenetic. Shocking. Obscene.
These three characteristics make this film a great one, but they also take it to a place where the Academy would not typically wander to.
Odds aren’t so great for this to win, but one can hope it will put an end to the “poor Leo” campaign when he snags the award for “Best Actor.”
FINAL OBSERVATIONS
All of these movies have very distinct personalities, which make this year’s batch of nominees a varied bunch.
Like always, with a ballot in my hand and my eyes glued to the screen, I will be battling my mother with our opposing predictions of who will take awards home that night.
The 86th Academy Awards will take place March 2 and will be televised on ABC at 4 p.m.