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Silver Linings Playbook is one of the best preformed films of the year.
Bradley Cooper plays against his usual "man whore, with a heart of
gold" routine and gives his best performance ever as Patrick, a man
recently diagnosed as bi-polar. Cooper is effortlessly captures moments
of humor and only to turn to anger or sorrow in the next minute.
Jennifer Lawrence in the perfect compliment to Cooper playing a recent
widow turned sex addict. Lawrence took what could have been a flat
character and was able to make a dramatic and moving performance that
shows her acting skills; being able to transform from totalitarian
fighting teen in the Hunger Games franchise. Cooper and Lawrence drive
the film through their chemistry, every moment they share on screen is
The supporting cast is also fantastic. De Niro gives his best performance in years as Patrick's football fanatic father. Much like Lawrence, De Niro is able to make his character grow, even with limited screen time. He also draws a surprising sympathy from the audience despite his unlikeability. Jacki Weaver should not go unmentioned. Her sociopathic character in Animal Kingdom was the black horse of the Oscar's in 2010. Weaver makes due with a small role that would go unnoticed with any other actress.
Overall O'Russel makes has the perfect balance of comedy and uneasiness that should be in a drama. He adds romance without making it the main focus, a triumph for a genre usually clouded with clichés. The script should be in the runnings for award shows this season, as it deftly handles the reality of mental illness without losing it's heart along the way.
Silver linings is in my top ten this year, check it out while its still in theatres.
One of the best films I've seen this year. The fact that both Pat and Tiffany are equally as damaged and have experienced similar tragic events prior to meeting makes for some very hilarious, yet compelling scenes. Two people who are seen as clinically insane by many people around them and have strong sexual tension between each other proved to be very entertaining! This movie was the perfect balance of funny, sweet and sad. When I was first introduced to the film I was expecting more of a "chick flick" (i had not yet read the synopsis) however I was pleasantly surprised with the interesting concept. I would definitely recommend it to anyone.
I had to watch this film twice in a row to try and understand (and I'm still lost) as to where the hype, and the endless award nominations came from. Maybe without all the hype I would have been less disappointed, but it's still, to me, a film not worth watching. I was expecting it to be different from other typical American rom coms, but I was wrong. I haven't got anything against American rom coms, I just never really rate them highly. What made silver linings especially disappointing for me is that the portrayal of mental illness (which was the part of the story that made me want to see it) was awful. Whether it be bad acting or a poor narrative, but without the talk of mental illness, I wouldn't have even been aware that mental illness existed in the movie. You'd honestly just think the characters had poor social skills or maybe some milder form of a learning disability, such as asbergers, but certainly not bi-polar or any other serious mental health conditions. And this makes me really wonder where the Oscar nominations came from? I've never been more puzzled? Don't get lost in the hype, the film was extremely average, along with the acting.
This movie left me wondering if, toward the end, all the characters
would sit Bradley down and reveal some elaborate scheme they had
ingeniously devised so that, ultimately, they would set him on the path
towards sanity--AND to explain to the viewer why reality had seemed so
warped in the movie up to that point...or SOMETHING that could
demystify how every character acts like they need to be heavily
I have a few minor issues with this movie:
~The story line has little coherency. ~Each character is incredibly-emotionally invested in the most trivial of matters. ~In every scenario each character behaves as if this is how people regularly interact and communicate with each other...well, minus Bradley and Jennifer...and Chris Tucker...and Bradley's Dad...and Bradley's friend Pat...
Okay, so I guess this movie says crazy people tend to cluster together, even outside of an institution. That's all I could come up with.
Nonetheless, I give this a 6 out of 10 because, aside from the plot that leaves the sane baffled, the actors' performances are hugely entertaining. It's like a piece of modern art you see in a museum that catches your eye enough that you stop and stare for awhile; however, if you were asked to evaluate the artist, you couldn't bring yourself to regard it too highly because you know it's just a painting of random splotches and gravity at work (no paintbrush required).
As a saying goes when the door is shut, god opens a window. Yeah we all
had out down points in life, however the truth about life is it's most
of the time a matter of how you get back up from troubled circumstances
is what counts. This is one of those romance stories I really like
because like any plan in football that works it runs toward the goal
With any good romance stories and dramas this film has characters that I actually care about and really like. But also really love the quarky, bizarre yet down to earth nature of the film.
The dialog in this film is great, it is at times a little strange and humorous but I feel that's what makes the characters seem more human. It really felt like I was hearing people talking and not just fictional characters.
Pat is played well by Bradley Cooper this is probably my favorite role from him for now. Pat is a broken guy you really feel pathos for. The legal and psychological troubles he's been though, sure what it did isn't completely right, but the guy he beat up wasn't innocent; along with a painful divorce. I like how his aggressive attitude toward things which is not just a psychological problem but a quark. One really funny scene is when he does a rant on a Ernest Heminway book which he literally throws out the window, it's funny because he kinda makes a point. He wants to rejoin life again but the problem is he's calling the wrong play.
I really like how the film at times has some really intense scenes. Like one where Pat was acting out a bit from the fact he couldn't find the wedding video, you can't help but feel for the guy as he has both anger and sadness combined, the fact that the wedding video is gone reflects the life he can't get back because to him that was the only times of happiness. But I really like the humanity of his character, whenever he feels he letting people down whether it's his mom, dad, or Tiffany he feels awful about it and himself; I feel it shows he's not a selfish person he really does care about other people and letting them down is the last thing he wants.
However my favorite character in the film is Tiffany, played brilliantly by Jennifer Laurence whom I think is kinda hot and a more than capable actress. Her character reminds me a little of April Ludgate from "Parks and Recreation" whom is also a little similar. I really love how fiery, feisty, energetic, a little bizarre, dark, she has charisma which is black, quarky, or clever. However the best thing about her to me is the fact that she accepts that she's not perfect she has her psychological troubles but she accepts them. She also a character you feel pathos for since like with Pat had to endure a loss, with her though it was the loss of her husband. I like that she's is ambitious in a way, she loves dancing and wants to be a champion but also doesn't want to be alone wants someone in her life again.
You already know in the film both really are a good match for one another. Both are somewhat the same, like with Pat she's also has aggression in an intense scene in the restaurant just seeing her exercise it makes me feel she might be more aggressive than Pat. Both are broken and are trying to get their lives back together as well have more in their life that they haven't had. And the chemistry between them is great I really love the banter between them, there are sparks whether they know it or not, and they support one another in a way; heck both of them dance well together so that ought to say something.
And you want both of them together but not just yet because like with any good romance story I feel one or both have to earn it first. And both do, in a way the film is a bit like a Howard Hawks film, as the film goes on both characters grow, Pat becomes more of a man and Tiffany more of a woman. And as that happens both start connecting, say things they probably never said to anyone else.
However this I don't think is just a romance about two people but it's also about love for family.
The supporting characters are also really good each with quarks and trouble of their own. Robert De Nero as Pat Sr I thought was great, just like his son he's psychologically troubled. And just like his son has a humanity, really like this one touching moment when he has a talk down with Pat and admits he hasn't been the best father. And we see in the film both of them also start growing closer becoming in touch with one another again.
I've said enough, Silver Linings Playbook is a touchdown.
Rating: 4 stars
Watched the film with my other half as thought this would be a good rom com with a different theme, however by half way through I wasn't sure if my wife wanted to continue or switch it off. I agree with some of the other reviews on here that the film doesn't dealt with mental illness very we'll, however I'm not sure that was the point of the film in the fist place. The first half was just a bit boring, some slightly amusing parts but not much else in the comedy department. The romance never feels like a romance as the connection between the two leads just doesn't fit properly. The performances from Mr Cooper and Miss Lawrence are very good and it has to be said I think they save this entire movie from being a total turkey. The last 20 minutes has some good tension as they approach the competition, it's just all a bit too much like hard work getting there and staying with it. Worth a watch but not worth much else.
This is writer/director David O. Russell's follow up his 2010 film The
It is Written and Directed by: David O. Russell it's based on the book by: Matthew Quick. It Stars: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Jacki Weaver and Chris Tucker
Plot: Pat Solitano (Cooper) after spending time in a mental institution is now out and living with his parents and is looking to get his life back on track and get back together with his wife. Pat meets Tiffany (Lawrence) a girl with her own problems, who offers to help Pat reconcile with his wife but first he has to do something important for her.
This film is amazingly Written and Directed, it's stunningly acted, its perfectly paced and has a brilliant soundtrack
I love the way the film plays out and everything in this movie works extremely well
In this film you really have to sit back and enjoy the ride. It's technically a romantic comedy but unlike some others I was not bored for a second from beginning to end
After this film ends I felt happy and its a great quality in a film if it makes you happy when you watch it
Silver Linings Playbook is definitely my absolute favorite movie of 2012. Thank You David O. Russell for giving us such an Amazing Film.
David O. Russell has always appeared to me to be the fourth member of a quartet of directors, roughly contemporaneous, who include Paul T. Anderson, Wes Anderson, and Alexander Payne. I would say that, of the four, he has always been the weakest. The only one of his films I truly enjoyed was "Three Kings". With this effort, I think he may have slid a little bit farther down in my estimation. He did manage to get good performances out of his cast, but when that cast includes Robert De Niro, Jacki Weaver, and Jennifer Lawrence, that should be a given. As for the film itself, it was kind of a mess, really. It just seemed interminable, with a whole cast of irritating people acting in dramatically implausible ways. The most sympathetic character, for me, was Tiffany, but I suspect that had more to do with Jennifer Lawrence's performance than anything that was written into the part. I hope she gets the Oscar that she earned for "Winter's Bone", and I hope a worthier role comes her way in the near future.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
There is one adjective that describes this movie sufficiently:
immature. After I finished watching this failure of a movie
(inexplicably nominated for, and winning, lots of awards, including an
Oscar), I started exploring where the immaturity comes from. Yeah,
Jennifer Lawrence was very young when filming this, only 21, but she's
just an actress -- you can't blame her for the screenplay she had to
adhere to. The director and screenwriter is a 50-ish guy, too. So,
what's the answer? Ah yes, there it is: the original novel was a debut
novel by Matthew Quick, released when the writer was just 32 years old.
Oh Lord, but it shows. (An interesting tidbit is how old-fashioned the
2012-released movie seems in extolling the "iPod": right, only a few
years later after the original story takes place in 2008, iPods seem
rather behind-the-times compared to iPhones and iPads.)
The movie is not just immature, but chock-full with every Hollywood cliché you can think of. Some of the scenes and dialogues are so predictable they're likely to force tears out of your eyes -- but not those of laughter or of being moved by the story. And then you learn that the Hollywood studio had bought the rights to film the novel even before the novel was *released* -- does more need to be said? This is "made-to-order" Hollywood fare -- and as a result, it's just as trashy as one might expect it to be. You can almost see the story's creator "listining" to an imagined audience: "What is it that the audience wants, what does it expect from me? Let's give it to the audience, then!" This is the exact reversal of the approach chosen by truly great works of art, where the paramount intention is not to give the audience what *they* want, but to express, as faithfully as possible, the artist's vision: what the artist feels needs to be said or shown about life, in his or her particular story.
I failed to get interested in any of the main characters in the movie. One is a mentally unhinged, alleged substitute high-school history teacher -- yet as such, he does not hesitate to recite an urban legend on the origin of the acronym "OK". Any *real* history teacher -- tenured or not -- would be unlikely to do that. It rather seemed as if this was the story's author trying to establish the character's professional credentials, but committing a guffaw instead, because an urban legend, in fact, devalues the alleged credentials, instead of confirming them.
There are many sex addicts in the world, recovering or not. Sorry, but although Jennifer Lawrence is undoubtedly an attractive actress, I did not find the character played by her one bit interesting. She's messed up, but so are millions of other people around the world -- why should we be interested in *this particular* messed-up sex addict? The same goes for her male counterpart. OK, so his wife cheated on him, and he beat her lover up to a bloody pulp, which probably isn't what a totally sane person would do. But, so what? It's happened before around the world, countless times. Why should the audience be interested in *this particular* cuckolded husband? Only because Bradley Cooper happens to be a handsome actor? The movie provides no answer, and because the two main characters are so uninteresting, the movie revolving around them is just as boring as they are.
I was also disturbed by the needless profanity pervading the movie. I don't mind profanity if it's justified by a movie's action or story, but here it seemed as if it was today's "expected standard" by the (youngish) audience, and *that's why* all the profanity was put in, just to appear "hip enough" -- not because the story or the dialogues truly demanded it.
I love movies transcending the boundaries of genres: there's nothing more sublime than a movie that is *both* a great comedy *and* a great drama at the same time, in one package. *That's* true art of movie-making. Yet this does not apply to _Silver Linings Playbook_: in fact, it suffers from the exact opposite flaw, in that it's neither a comedy, nor a drama, but rather a failure in both of those departments. It seems to vacillate on the border between comedy and drama, undecided where to go -- but it's too shallow to be a good drama, and too trite and predictable to be really funny. There's really very little to laugh or even smile about in _Silver Linings Playbook_. Instead, we're treated to some painfully extended scenes *meant* to be funny, which however are not: see all the betting hysteria going on in Pat's household, led by an over-the-top Robert De Niro.
What's worse, the movie presumes to close with the same sort of grand finale featured in many classic romantic comedies: with the heroine running away, and (ideally) the hero catching up with her. Think of _Bridget Jones's Diary_, or _The Apartment_, or _Gone with the Wind_. Now I feel guilty to mention all those phenomenally successful romantic movies in the same paragraph with _Silver Linings Playbook_ -- because the classic, romantic ending just doesn't work in _Silver Linings Playbook_, and rings hollow.
If you're looking for the top tell-tale sign of the movie's immature, juvenile nature, just watch the scene with the main character, Pat, ranting about one of the finest novels ever written, Hemingway's _A Farewell to Arms_. Erm, sorry, I still don't understand the meaning or intention of that scene. Was it meant to be funny, in showing how nonsensical Pat's objections to Hemingway's plot (and ending) were? Well, it *wasn't* funny. Or -- which is even worse -- was the scene meant to be serious, reflecting that that's what the author of _Silver Linings Playbook_ really thought about _A Farewell to Arms_? If so, you can't get any more immature than that.
Movies, of course, are subject to the likes/dislikes of the viewer.
Despite trepidations over the weak cast (except, of course, for
DeNiro), I chose to attend on the basis of this movie being nominated
for an Academy Award. Unfortunately, what I found was a poorly scripted
and poorly acted film that had no meaningful plot and no meaningful
value. Clearly an "A" movie in production quality, the fact is that
this movie has nothing to say. It seems to display dysfunctional
characters for the purpose of capitalizing on those dysfunctional
characters and nothing more. This movie might best have been left on
I managed to stick with the movie to the end, mostly because I was with a group, and waited (impatiently) for something, anything, meaningful to happen. Sadly, nothing meaningful ever did happen.
Most people seem to have gotten something from this movie. If you didn't, don't feel alone.
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