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Film Review; Silver Linings Playbook (2012)


Directed By: David O’Russell
Written By: David O’Russell (Screenplay) & Matthew Quick (Novel)
Production Co: Weinsten Co.
Main Cast: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert de Niro, Jack Weaver and Christ Tucker
Format: Cinema
Add It: IMDB

Summary: (From IMBD)

After a stint in a mental institution, former teacher Pat Solitano moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a mysterious girl with problems of her own.

Intriguing Premise
As soon as I heard that Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence were going to be in a film together, I was instantly intrigued. Jennifer Lawrence has been on my radar ever since The Hunger Games, and I really liked her performance in House At the End of the Street. I have liked Bradley Cooper for a very long time, with my favourite performance of his being in The Hangover. As soon as I saw the trailer for this film, I was even more interested in seeing this but I was also worried. What if the film doesn’t live up to my expectations? Fortunately, however, this film reached those expectations and was one that I found myself truly enjoying. A film that I would be very happy to purchase on DVD and watch over and over again. What was it that was so great about this film? Read on to find out!

Interesting, Interesting
The premise of this film is your typical boy meets girl, and yet, it is also so much more than that. Underneath it all is the serious topic of mental illnesses and the unstable lives that a lot of people have to deal with day in and day out. We start the film with Pat, an ex-teacher who has just been released from the mental hospital where he was admitted when he pleaded insanity in the court, after brutally attacking a fellow teacher – who happened to be sleeping with his wife. Pat has been living with undiagnosed bi-polar disorder. When he returns home, it is easy to see the unstable life that he has been living as his own father has a bad case of OCD and his brother isn’t exactly brilliant with the social niceties either. In a delusional way, Pat is certain that, even with a restraining order against him, his wife will see that he is a more stable and reliable man and will want to get back with him. And thus starts his journey; to get his wife back. I loved the plot of this story, the way it all came together and just the entire journey that Pat took. There were so many great moments in this film that touch your heart and a many more that have you laughing hysterically.

They Are Everything
What really makes this film memorable and so brilliant are the characters. Pat is a strong character who will make you laugh and who it is impossible not to admire. It is clear from the very beginning that he has a problem fully adjusting to social situations when he simply says whatever is on his mind. For example, when he is told, “Don’t ask how he died.”, a minute later, he does exactly that. Throughout the film his character grows and by the end of the film, I was so happy for him and glad with the way things turned out. But really it is the performance of Bradley Cooper that really makes Pat’s character shine through. I have known Bradley to be a grand actor before but with the serious topics that this film deals with, it was really great to see him act in a more serious and damaging role. He played the role with perfection.

On the other side of the spectrum we have Tiffany. She has just lost her husband and because of his death became emotionally unstable herself. Like Pat, she says whatever is on her mind without worrying about the consequences. She is eccentric, passionate, but also manipulative and an attention seeker. But I adored her. She grew so much through the film and you could really see her strengths shine through. She is a girl who has been through so much and just wants to know that she can continue her life without always thinking about her late husband. Personally, this may be Jennifer Lawrence’s best performance so far. With amazing, and crucial scenes that could have gone entirely wrong if acted too much or too little, Jennifer shows that she can take a role on board and play it just as it should be. You could really feel the emotions of the character making it that much easier to connect with her.

Beautiful, Beautiful
Touching on such a deep issue and managing to create a dramatic comedy is not an easy thing to do and yet David O’Russell (Screenplay) and Matthew Quick (Novel) have mastered it beautifully. There is the perfect mix of drama and comedy in this film to make it a film to remember. I found myself laughing a lot throughout this film, and yet I also felt the realness of this film. It is easy to see that David O’Russell did a brilliant job of directing this film as well. With a brilliant cast of actors all performing to an excellent standard, cinematography that was simplistic yet worked well, and editing that was creative and interesting, O’Russell certainly knew what he wanted and how to achieve it.

It Is Said
Overall, this film was one that I thoroughly enjoyed. It was touching, emotional and at the same time completely hilarious. It had some really memorable moments within it and some remarkable scenes that were really full of emotion that made you squirm slightly in your seats. This film held nothing back, it was in your face and it had something to say and I really loved it. It was entertaining and deep, a film that I would urge many people to go and watch because it deserves all the spotlight it can get. I am so glad that I chose to go and see this film and hope that I am not the only one that truly appreciates this film.

** I paid for a full admission to see this film. I was not required to write a review, positive or negative. All views expressed are my own. **

Four Stars
four out of five hearts



Silver Linings Playbook is OUT NOW.


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