This just breaks my heart. A few days ago I listed 10 movies that were my favorites. Now I have to really break it down for the Oscar categories. This isn’t easy. There were too many good movies this year, and too many knock out performances. What can do you? How do you not include young upstarts like Oscar Isaac and Michael B. Jordan? Vets like Julia Roberts? Harrison Ford?

How can you leave “Gravity” out of the top 10 but give merit to its director? “Gravity” has made zillions of dollars. That’s the reward. Some people I know will faint when they see I chose “Her” over “Inside Llewyn Davis.” I loved both movies. But looking at the SAG nominees and talking to Academy voters, I’m getting a sense of what’s happening. “Philomena” is a phenomenon. Everyone loves it. Judi Dench is going to pull Steve Coogan along.

Oh, best actress: I’m so torn, I’ve left the fifth slot a tie between Sandra Bullock, whom I adore, and Emma Thompson, who’s so lovably haughty in “Saving Mr. Banks.”  But I can’t leave Amy Adams out.

Can’t there be more slots? And doesn’t Oprah have everything in the world already? Yes, but she is outstanding in “The Butler.” That can’t be diminished. Matthew McConaughey? You think he lost that weight for nothing? He’s great in three movies this year, dammit.

Think about it: “Captain Phillips” is superior filmmaking. So was “Lone Survivor,” but the momentum isn’t there. It’s the “Three Kings” of 2013.

And where to put Idris Elba? You tell me. There are only five slots for Best Actor. He and Forest Whitaker each deserve one. But look at my five. And then think about Joaquin Phoenix, Leonardo DiCaprio and Christian Bale, too.

Special dispensation for original screenplay– Fruitvale, Short Term 12, Frances Ha, and Enough Said were all gems. Gems.

BEST PICTURE

August: Osage County

American Hustle

Philomena

The Wolf of Wall Street

Blue Jasmine

Captain Phillips

12 Years a Slave

Lee Daniels’ The Butler

Nebraska

Her

BEST ACTOR

Robert Redford

Tom Hanks (Captain Phillips)

Bruce Dern

Chiwetel Ejiofor

Matthew McConaughey (Dallas Buyers Club) or Oscar Isaac

BEST ACTRESS

Cate Blanchett

Meryl Streep

Amy Adams (American Hustle)

Judi Dench

Emma Thompson or Sandra Bullock

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Barkhad Abdi

Jared Leto

Daniel Bruhl

Steve Coogan

Michael Fassbender

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Oprah Winfrey

Jennifer Lawrence

June Squibb

Margo Martindale

Lupita Nyongo

BEST DIRECTOR

David O. Russell

Alfonso Cuaron

Steve McQueen

Alexander Payne

Martin Scorsese

SCREENPLAY (ORIGINAL)

Lee Daniels’ The Butler

Her

Blue Jasmine

Inside Llewyn Davis

Nebraska

SCREENPLAY (ADAPTED)

August: Osage County

Captain Phillips

12 Years a Slave

Wolf of Wall Street

Philomena

 

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