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2014 Oscar predictions: '12 Years a Slave', 'Gravity', or....?

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It's Oscar time, which means only one other thing. Yep. It's also prediction time. Critics and movie buffs everywhere have their own picks about who will and won't win, who will get robbed, who deserved to win, who didn't. You know the story.

I don't claim to know everything. I mean, it's pretty obvious that a movie like "12 Years a Slave" is engineered for Oscar dominance. That doesn't mean it will dominate, although I do happen to think it's going to win Best Picture. But, I'll be pulling for "Gravity" or maybe even "Her". But if any movie is going to just roll tonight and collect a bundle of Oscar statues, it's "12 Years".

A movie like "American Hustle" could come along and steal the show. It has nominees in every major category and has already won its share of awards from critics group around the world. It has ten nominations, tying for the most noms with "12 Years a Slave".

Critic Chat: Tim and Lonita preview Oscars on KC Live! (video)

The list of nominees includes many returning favorite from Julia Roberts and Meryl Streep for "August: Osage County" to Tom Hanks and his amazing performance in "Captain Phillips". But this year has a lot of first time nominees who could snag their share of Oscar gold. Lupita Nyong'o is brilliant in "12 Years a Slave" and just happens to be my pick -- and I'm sure the pick of many -- to win Best Supporting Actress.

So who will win? Who should win? The thing about the Oscars is who wins and who should win aren't always one and the same. That's why they play the game -- or the show -- whatever.

Check out a full list of the 2014 Academy Award nominations and be sure to follow me @tbenglish on Twitter during the show. My picks are below. Feel free to compare your picks to mine. Bring it on.

Best Picture: 12 Years a Slave

Best Director: Alfonso Cuaron, Gravity

Best Actress: Sandra Bullock, Gravity

Best Actor: Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club

Best Supporting Actor: Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club

Best Supporting Actress: Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave

Best Adapted Screenplay: John Ridley, 12 Years a Slave

Best Original Screenplay: Spike Jonze, Her

Best Animated Feature: Frozen

Best Documentary Feature: The Act of Killing

Best Foreign Language Film: The Broken Circle Breakdown, (Belgium)

Outstanding Short Film -- Animated: Room on the Broom, Max Lang and Jan Lachauer

Outstanding Short Film -- Live Action: Pitääkö Mun Kaikki Hoitaa? (Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?), Selma Vilhunen and Kirsikka Saari

Documentary Film -- Short Subject: Karama Has No Walls, Sara Ishaq

Outstanding Cinematography: Gravity, Emmanuel Lubezki

Outstanding Music -- Original Score: Gravity, Steven Price

Outstanding Music -- Original Song: “Let It Go,” Frozen; music and lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez

Outstanding Visual Effects: Gravity, Tim Webber, Chris Lawrence, Dave Shirk and Neil Corbould

Outstanding Production Design: Gravity, Andy Nicholson (Production Design); Rosie Goodwin and Joanne Woollard (Set Decoration)

Outstanding Costume Design: The Great Gatsby, Catherine Martin

Outstanding Makeup and Hairstyling: Dallas Buyers Club, Adruitha Lee and Robin Mathews

Stay up to date by subscribing to my Movie Examiner column at the top of the page and you'll get my articles and reviews sent right to your e-mail.

You can also follow on Facebook or check out my new podcast, The Tim and Lo Show, with fellow critic and Examiner Lonita Cook.

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