People love to gamble. It doesn't matter how hard governments or well-meaning/control freak do-gooders try to contain humanity's penchant for the thrill of a good bet, the seemingly insatiable desire to soothsay while put something of worth on the line always wins out. The gambling bug simply can not be contained. The bulk of the gambling world's profits undoubtedly come from the sphere of the sporting world, whose entire appeal is based on the unpredictability of outcomes, but like a Vegas-minded Tom Joad, wherever there is an uncertain outcome, Gambling will be there. Wherever competition exists and thrives, Gambling will be there. Wherever people can pool together money with a pledge that the person who correctly guesses the most categories wins the sum of the combined entries, Gambling will be there, which brings us to the intersection of the gambling world and the entertainment world: the Academy Awards. For the common lay person who doesn't own a double digit amount of books on the history of the Academy Awards (not something I'm necessarily proud of), their most likely interaction with the Oscars is the Oscar night pool, and that's certainly understandable. As you munch on snacks and guzzle down booze while listening to makeup artists thank people you've never met and never will, it adds a little spice to the proceedings to make a game out of the whole thing. The problem though becomes that the amateur status that makes the Oscar pool necessary for the ceremony not to drag on like a Ben Stein reading of War and Peace is a huge handicap for the would-be Oscar pool champ. With that in mind, we have assembled a list of predictions to help out even the most severely Oscar naïve, so you don't have to be the butt of the joke when you go 0-17 after you're prediction that The Croods will win Best Animated Film falls through. (Free tip: don't just predict the things you like the best. It won't work out well). Without further ado, here are your best bets this Sunday night for the 86th Academy Awards.
A film fanatic at a very young age, starting with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle movies and gradually moving up to more sophisticated fare, at around the age of ten he became inexplicably obsessed with all things Oscar. With the incredibly trivial power of being able to chronologically name every Best Picture winner from memory, his lifelong goal is to see every Oscar nominated film, in every major category, in the history of the Academy Awards.