I do know how you can win your office Oscar poll. It's not rocket science. Even though the Academy won't actually vote on winners until February it's not hard to predict who'll win Oscars this year. You just have to get into character.
First, think old.
The largest voting bloc is actors and the majority of them are senior citizens. When you go to Oscar screenings you see lots of air tanks. So don't think, what did my friends think was great, think what would my parents or grandparents vote for if they were in movies years ago? That'll put you in the mindset of the voters who last year chose The Artist (about silent films) over the Descendants (about a modern family) or two years ago chose the King's Speech (British history) over the Social Network (Facebook).
Second, think like an actor. They want to see craft and want to think that what they're doing with their lives is valuable so they look for important stories, like the Hurt Locker, about the Iraq War, or Slumdog Millionaire, about life in Mumbai.
Third, think like you're in a high school with tons of money where everyone knows everyone and everyone is self-absorbed and the social hierarchy is sharply defined. People vote for people they love, people they've worked with, people they want to see succeed. There's an Oscar campaign behind each big film with stories planted in media, and key players attending Oscar parties and comporting themselves politically, never saying anything too aggressive or dismissive. I'm just honored to be nominated. Etc.
Ok, here's the winning ballot.
Supporting actress will got to Anne Hathaway, a talented woman who was great in Les Miz and whose rising success will benefit many. The Oscars are Hollywood's chance to sanctify new stars who can help many money for others in the business.
Best actress will go to Jennifer Lawrence for the same reasons. Actors love Silver Linings Playbook.
Best actor will go to Daniel Day-Lewis who's one of the greatest actors of our time and who became liberatin' Lincoln.
Best director and picture are nearly always tied together and I don't see any way class president Steven Spielberg, who made an august film about American history that makes Hollywood seem important, can be stopped.
Those are the easy races. The hard one is supporting actor. Bet on Tommy Lee Jones. Seems like a landslide kinda year.