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Lights, camera, action: Where to catch the 85th Academy Awards

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Entertainment,Robert Fulton

Local long-time film critic Bill Henry is impressed with this year's crop of Academy Award-nominated films.

"It's a pretty terrific group," said Henry, who is hosting the DC Film Society's annual Oscar viewing party at the Arlington Cinema N Drafthouse on Sunday. "It's been a pretty amazing group of movies."

Early on, Henry wasn't too impressed with what was showing up at the local megaplex. Then, starting in the fall, heavy hitters such as "Argo" starting coming out.

"It was one great movie after another," Henry said.

Henry's personal favorite this year is "Les Miserables," but he predicts "Argo" will take home Best Picture honors. While Best Leading Actor and Supporting Actress category winners are considered shoe-ins (Daniel Day-Lewis and Anne Hathaway, respectively), Henry is eager to see who the Academy selects for Best Actress and Director.

At this year's Oscar viewing event at the draft house, the DC Film Society will once again hold a silent auction -- items from George Lucas and Carrie Fisher are up for bid.

Henry added that he's excited for the James Bond tribute at this year's award ceremony, and to see how host Seth MacFarlane makes out.

With films such as "Argo," "Lincoln" and "Zero Dark Thirty," Henry quipped that the Academy's nominees for 2012 reflect positively locally.

"This is the year when Washington works," Henry said.

And the nominees are ... five parties where you can catch the 85th Academy Awards:

And the winner is ... the Arlington Cinema N Drafthouse: This is the 21st year of this DC Film Society fundraiser. Watch the Academy Awards on the big screen while participating in a pick-the-winners contest; test your knowledge in a trivia contest; and check out the silent auction of movie memorabilia, gift certificates and other items. The event is hosted by local film critics Bill Henry and Tim Gordon, and food and drink is available for purchase. $15 for members, $20 for nonmembers. 6:30 p.m. dcfilmsociety.org.

Snuggle With the Stars at the U.S. Navy Memorial Burke Theater: This official Oscar party benefits DC Shorts. It's a modern pajama party with an open bar, food and swag. $50 general pass, $100 VIP. 6 p.m. wins.dcshorts.com.

Maegan & Candice's Oscar Party at the Black Cat: Enjoy the show on the venue's backstage. Free. 8 p.m. blackcatdc.com.

Art Soiree's Live Viewing Night of Oscars at the Ritz-Carlton Georgetown: This is the fourth annual Art Soiree event. Live music, entertainment, themed cocktails and multiple screens to catch all the award-giving. Black tie, advance purchase only. $40 regular admission, $90 VIP. 7 p.m. theartsoiree.com.

Oscar Viewing Party at Commissary: Presented by the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, indulge in themed cocktails, truffle popcorn and more at Commissary. No cover charge. 8 p.m. ramw.org.

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