We’re less than a week away from the 86th Annual Academy Awards Ceremony, which shall (finally) bring the 2014 Oscar race to a conclusion and reveal which directors, actors, and technical artists are recognized by their Hollywood peers for having done great work in 2013. Whereas in recent years there’s generally been a Best Picture front-runner headed into the ceremony (see: Argo last year, The Artist in 2012), this year there isn’t a single film that’s swept the awards shows preceding the Oscars – and thus, gained enough momentum to really suggest that the Academy’s top prize is its to lose, at this stage.
Still, like we’ve done in previous years, we shall analyze and examine the 2014 Best Picture Oscar contenders in terms of their strengths and weaknesses as works of art, before looking at their Oscar prospects. Our breakdown of each film (listed in alphabetical order) will be as follows: Why It Should Win (i.e. What’s good about the film?) Why It Shouldn’t Win (i.e. What’s not-so-good about the film?) The Bottom Line (i.e. What are its chances?)