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And the Winner Is ...

Our (very possibly flawed) formula for guessing the Oscar winners

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UPDATE: Feb. 23, 2013

Boise Moviegoers Make Their Oscar Picks

The road to the Academy Awards is a circuitous journey, but Boise Weekly readers are up-to-speed on all of the nominees because they've tagged along with our coverage of world and North American premieres of Amour, Argo, Silver Linings Playbook and The Master.

Additionally, we've introduced readers to the Boise High grad whose live-action short subject—Buzkashi Boys—is one of this year's Oscar short nominees, and we met Lee Schatz, the Idaho native whose real life drama became the hit movie Argo, which is favored to take home the Best Picture Award at the Oscars, Sunday, Feb. 24.

As the clock ticks down to the big shindig, BW popped by The Flicks—which is currently showing a slew of nominees—to conduct an informal poll of the Treasure Valley's most avid moviegoers. Here are their predictions for who will take home Hollywood's biggest prize.

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ORIGINAL STORY: Feb. 20, 2013

In our never-ending effort to make you the smarty pants at your Oscar party, here are a few helpful tips to consider when filling in your bracket.

The Performance Outshines the Film: Daniel Day-Lewis' Lincoln is considerably better than Steven Spielberg's yawn-inspiring epic. That's why Lewis can't be denied an Oscar while Spielberg will be left at the altar.

Evening the Score: When a skilled artist is denied a nomination, Oscar likes to soften the blow by offering a backhanded compliment. Because Ben Affleck didn't get a Best Director nod, don't be surprised if his film, Argo, takes home Best Picture.

The Jumbo Shrimp (aka The Tallest Dwarf): Always choose the Best Supporting Actor/Actress candidate whose role is so big that they really shouldn't be in the "supporting" category. The best example this year is Christoph Waltz in Django Unchained.

One Big Surprise: Oscar usually reveals one big upset per year. This year, don't rule out Emmanuelle Riva taking Best Actress for Amour. Almost every preview has Jennifer Lawrence snagging the trophy for Silver Linings Playbook, but Riva, who will celebrate her 86th birthday on Oscar night, could be in for a big surprise. If Riva doesn't win, consider Hugh Jackman as an upset Best Actor winner for his work in Les Miserables.

So here's our formula for choosing your Oscar picks: Select a liberal amount of nominees from the Will Win column, but make sure to pick at least one surprise winner from the Should Win or Wild Card column.

You can look at our cheat sheet by clicking the image on the right.