Oscar Race 2014: Your Cheat Sheet to the Best Picture Nominees

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American Hustle

On March 2, 2014, the 86th Academy Awards will air on ABC, and nine exceptional films from the last year are vying for the night’s top prize. Memorable stories, exciting performances, and innovative cinematography set these films apart — but only one will be named Best Picture.

American Hustle

Based on a true story, this crime drama tells the story of a pair of New Jersey con artists (Christian Bale and Amy Adams) who reluctantly team up with an FBI agent (Bradley Cooper) to take down their fellow criminals. 

Why it might win: While it barely squeaked into the running with its late-stage release in 2013, the American Hustle drama took the critics by storm, picking up some major buzz. A tight script, entertaining story, and slew of exceptional performances from its A-list ensemble cast are the exact elements that Oscar voters look for in a Best Picture winner.

Why it might not: It’s a stylish, engaging film, but doesn’t pack an emotional punch or aesthetically dazzle the way some of the other Best Picture nominees do.

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