Movie Review: Silver Linings Playbook

Posted: December 2, 2012 in award season, movie reviews, movies
Tags: , , , , ,

Sometimes people just don’t get you. Most of the time it’s because they don’t want to take the time figure out who you are or what you’re about. Silver Linings Playbook is the story of two misfits who are just trying to find their way.

Silver Linings Playbook

Starring: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Chris Tucker, Jacki Weaver, Julia Stiles

Premise: Pat is released from a court mandated mental facility after beating up his wife’s lover. Convinced he has his bipolar symptoms at bay, Pat makes it his mission to get his wife back by proving he has his life together. This isn’t easy when he refuses to take his medication, has nervous overbearing parents, and meets an intriguing young woman, Tiffany, with her own equally complicated issues. Tiffany agrees to help him get his wife back if he will help her with a dance competition.

My Review: Silver Linings Playbook is a really good movie. The acting was phenomenal, with standout work from Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and Robert De Niro. I wouldn’t be surprised if one or more of these actors received an Oscar nod. However, I wanted to like this movie so much more than I actually did. It was most definitely not a bad movie, it just didn’t live up to my incredibly high and probably unrealistic expectations. There was something missing…The Silver Lining? Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper.

Jennifer Lawrence as Tiffany is incredible. I know she is often given a hard time for her seemingly “emotionless” line reads, but in this movie she was vibrant and full of life as Tiffany. She screamed, kicked, and fought to show the audience (and Pat) Tiffany’s heart. Her performance was powerful and unlike anything I’ve seen from her thus far. Lawrence had this spark in her eye the entire time that made you laugh at her and root for her at the same time. And her chemistry with Bradley Cooper was exhilarating.

Pat is blunt. He has no filter. His brain moves so quickly sometimes it seems as if his mouth will never catch up. Bradley Cooper as Pat was a marvel to watch.  His blue eyes seemed to burn even more intensely as Pat’s rapid-fire monologues about Hemingway or getting Nikki back, or other people thinking he’s crazy escaped his mouth as if being trapped inside for much too long. Pat almost comes naturally to Cooper, the pretty boy absent from his troubled and tortured soul.

Also stellar were Robert De Niro or as I like to call him Bob (I’d never call him that to his face) and Jacki Weaver who played Pat’s parents. It’s not hard to see why Pat is the way he is, his parents may be equally as…let’s use the word eccentric…as Pat is. Pat Sr. has an obsession with gambling and football, using these things to fund his restaurant. But we get the sense it’s more than just an obsession for Pat, it’s an extension of him. His way of connecting with people, and his excuse for being the way that he is with his family. Silver Linings Playbook is less about the story and more about the characters finding their way.

So with all these things, why didn’t I LOVE it? Truthfully, I do not know. I guess, there was just something missing. Maybe I wanted a bigger “I LOVE her moment” from Pat. A bigger grander gesture. Maybe it’s because like Pat and Tiffany the movie itself is a misfit. I wouldn’t classify it a comedy, I wouldn’t classify it a romance, and it’s not quite a rom com? So what is it? Guess you have to watch it and find out for yourself.

Rating: 3 ½ Stars





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