It happened so fast. Some of us saw it coming, or thought we did. We had no way of knowing for sure. Many said they assumed the critics would rally behind one film but that, in the end, AMPAS would not. What makes large groups of people like one thing over another has everything to do with perception, timing and the quality of the film itself; most of us know a good movie when we see one. But oh, for the hemming and hawing in between.
The Oscar race has become a show in itself. Or maybe it always was. It is a dramatic storyline. It has a beginning, a middle and a definite end. We, having cut our teeth on movies, want to see our happy ending. We need conflict. We need an underdog overcoming adversity. We need a love story.