28 November 2012 9:15 PM, PST | FilmExperience | See recent FilmExperience news »

In a rather beautiful turn of events, both Les Misérables and Zero Dark Thirty arrived to implications of raves (ah, pointless Les Miz embargo) and actual ones (Zdt had no embargo) and though neither are opening until Santa's elves are deep into overtime, they've made the forthcoming Oscar race much more exciting. What we have are real competitions in multiple categories. At least for now; precursor prizes have a way of flattening out the drama if they arrive at consensus too quickly. We've already discussed Les Miz's first screening and the Hugh vs. Daniel Best Actor race.

But while you're waiting for my Zero Dark Thirty review, let's discuss the confusing Best Actress race.

This particular shot is the second half of one of my favorite cuts of the year... from the screen she's watching to this face.

Best Actress

What's the confusion, you may be asking. Yes, Jennifer Lawrence »

- NATHANIEL R

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