David O Russell brings us a charming and crowd pleasing comedy drama with his latest hit, Silver Linings Playbook
I've been slow on updating my blog as of late, I saw Silver Linings Playbook nearly 3 weeks ago now but due to a severe bout of procrastination and laziness I haven't yet reviewed it. So here it is, i'll try my best to give you a decent an informed opinion of the film.
Taking a slightly different route to his gritty 2010 hit, The Fighter, David O' Russell brings us the lighter, yet no less emotionally packing, Silver Linings Playbook. The film revolves around Pat Solitano (Bradley Cooper) and his life after leaving a mental health facility with bi-polar disorder, Jennifer Lawrence plays his love interest, Tiffany Maxwell while Robert DeNiro plays Pat's obsessive compulsive Father, Pat Solintano Snr. Chris Tucker, Jacki Weaver and Anupam Kher flesh out the supporting cast.
Following a spell in a mental health institute where he was diagnosed with Bi-Polar disorder, Pat Solitano returns to his family home healthy and believing he is a changed man. Pat's aim is to win back his ex-Wife, who after growing restless with him, had an affair, which subsequently led to the episode which put Pat in the mental health facility. Following a dinner with an old friend, Pat meets the equally unstable yet hilarious Tiffany Maxwell, and they instantly hit it off. Cooper and Lawrence's chemistry is a delight to watch on screen, creating an intensely interesting yet oddly beautiful relationship. However, Pat still mostly concerned with getting his wife back (despite a restraining order), strikes a deal with Tiffany, who agrees to secretly give letters from Pat to his wife as long as he participates in a dance contest with her. All the while Pat's sports obsessed father his betting the family business away on football games. While the film's ending is inevitable and predictable, you can't help but fall for the charm of the journey to get there.
Bradley Cooper's turn as Pat is nothing particularly distinguished, he brings comic timing and a certain gravitas to the role, and thankfully, he doesn't over act, yet he never sparkles. However, his opposite number Jennifer Lawrence thoroughly revels in the role, bringing a feisty yet moody and heavy emotionality to the character. She jumps off the screen and is instantly likeable. Cooper's and Lawrence's chemistry is nothing short of terrific, they bounce off each other so perfectly, while this can be contributed to their portrayals, due credit must be given to the screenwriters for creating such a charmingly tough yet hilarious script, flowing superbly well in every scene. DeNiro gives a typically restrained performance, in some parts he is superb, garnering the right mix of obsessive compulsive and disciplinarian. However it feels like DeNiro does channel his Meet The Parents character, Jack Byrnes, in other scenes. Chris Tucker's role as Pat's friend Danny is surprisingly well measured while Anupam Kher's Dr Patel lights up some scenes, bringing a lovely rapport with Cooper's Pat.
While Silver Linings Playbook has its negatives, the film's finale is everything from hilarious, to sad, to beautiful in the space of 5 minutes and you can't help but find yourself engrossed with Pat and Tiffany's final scene. Like many of this year's alternative romantic comedies, Silver Linings Playbook is charming, loving and will ultimately leave you satisfied, while Coopers and DeNiro's performances are great, Lawrence takes the limelight in what will leave you wanting more from the ever maturing actress. 3.5 / 5