EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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February 24, 2013

He says, they say: Our critic makes his picks for Oscars

Pop the popcorn, roll out the red carpet, and get ready to watch the 85th Annual Academy Awards. With a great year in a film, it’s a tough race this year in numerous categories despite many unfortunate snubs and nominations with which I disagree. (My relationship with the Oscars is quite complicated.)

If I were voting, the show would certainly be quite different. But like most years, I’ll be watching the TV and shouting at the screen when the Academy manages to get it all wrong again.

While I’ve enjoyed the past string of Best Picture winners (“The Hurt Locker,” “The King’s Speech,” “The Artist”), never has the winner actually felt like the “best” film of the year, but rather the most likely to win.

Hence, predictions are born, and every year I get about 70 percent correct of the 24 categories. As with most years, I’ll be completely satisfied if my following predictions end up being wrong, because that just means a more deserving title or actor likely took the prize.

So, without further ado, here are my predictions for the big six categories of the 85th Annual Academy Awards.

BEST PICTURE

Nominees:

* “Amour”

* “Argo”

* “Beasts of the Southern Wild”

* “Django Unchained”

* “Les Misérables”

* “Life of Pi”

* “Lincoln”

* “Silver Linings Playbook”

* “Zero Dark Thirty”

WILL WIN:

“Lincoln”

SHOULD WIN:

“Django Unchained.”

SHOULDN’T BE HERE: “Silver Linings Playbook.”

LEFT OUT: “The Master”

While recent Best Picture winners are likely to fade from audience’s memory shortly after they nab the top prize, this year’s (likely) winner will forever live on since it will be shown in 8th grade history classes for the rest of eternity. Steven Spielberg’s well-made, superbly written and masterfully acted “Lincoln” is a fine, prestigious, political biopic that Oscar voters love and will probably find best suited to win big at the awards.

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