Is it Clooney versus the field?
Ryan Gosling, "The Ides of March"
Pro: Gosling has the leading role in George Clooney's topical political thriller which appears to be on a similar box office road as "Michael Clayton." As a campaign strategist who thinks he's finally found a candidate he can really believe in, Gosling perfectly encapsulates the disappointment voters have with seemingly ideal politicians who can't live up to their expectations. Don't be surprised if the movie plays to Academy members more than the general public.
Con: His co-stars, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Paul Giamatti, have more interesting performances. Plus, his other two roles in "Drive" and "Crazy, Stupid, Love" may muddle matters (and he won't be the only contender with this problem).