Yesterday, I put up my predictions for this year's Oscars in eleven key categories. So, how did I do?
Ten out of eleven correctly predicted.
Pretty good, if I say so myself; actually, one of my better years. Just one small problem. I didn't get The Big One right - Best Picture. I said it would go to Gravity, the Academy went for 12 Years A Slave.
But you know what? I don't mind at all.
Gravity did exceptionally well, cleaning up in the technical categories and nabbing the Best Director award for Alfonso Cuarón. The fact that it fell at the final fence to 12 Years is no disgrace at all. I mean, look at American Hustle, Captain Phillips, Wolf Of Wall Street and Philomena. Not one statuette between them.
It's encouraging that the Academy chose to reward an exceptional film this year. The last few Best Picture winners - Argo, The Artist, The King's Speech - all of them had merit, all were very good. But I don't think "very good" is enough. The film crowned Best Picture should be cinema at its finest - an engrossing storyline, a cast of vibrant characters and a mix of intelligence and emotional punch.
12 Years A Slave delivers on all these fronts. It's a terrific film - in fact, in years to come, I think it will come to be regarded as something of a classic. I did think that its occasionally graphic nature - the hanging scene, the flogging - would turn off Academy voters. Fortunately, this seems not to have been the case.