Sunday, December 30, 2012

Movie Review: Silver Linings Playbook

The trailer for this film left me scratching my head. Crazy guy and crazy girl start dancing to get...less crazy? I saw De Niro playing Bradley Cooper's father but, after decades of phoned in performances in sub par movies, I'm sad to say that doesn't mean much anymore. There were only two things that caught my interest about this film. The return of Chris Tucker (Smokey from Friday, funniest movie ever!) and it's director, David O. Russel. Well, Russel delivers yet again. I loved this movie. I really did.

Bradley Cooper plays Pat, a man with bi-polar disorder whose life has been turned upside down following a traumatic episode that resulted in him being institutionalized. He get released but must now live with his oddball, elderly parents. As he struggles to get his life back in order, he meets a young woman with mental/emotional problems that seem to match his own (Jennifer Lawrence as Tiffany). The film follows their strange relationship, two "crazy" individuals who help each other maintain their sanity...even though the rest of society and it's "normal" people seem to act worse than them.

I can't say enough positive things about this film. The acting is top notch. I've never been a big Bradley Cooper fan but he knocks this role out of the park. His take on Pat, a violent, rage filled man who desperately longs to atone for his sins and settle back down to his once normal suburban life, is tragic and hilarious at the same time. Jennifer Lawrence is simply stunning. She's beautiful and her dance sequences, maaaaaaaaan. Her chemistry with Cooper is amazing. Their back and forth, often volatile exchanges had me laughing and at the edge of my seat at the same time. Chris Tucker, it's just so good seeing him back on screen I really didn't care what he did, but he makes Pat's crazy friend from the mental hospital seem like someone I'd want to hang out with too. Finally, De Niro...he's back. No Meet The Parents/New Year's Eve cash grab acting here. This is one of De Niro best roles in a long, long time.
David O. Russel knows how to craft family dramas and explore relationships. His films, are like "people persons," they're for everyone. His use of handheld cameras for flashback sequences, as well as music and pop culture references (Metallica and Megadeth REPRESENT!) up the fun factor in the film. What could have been a sad story of two people with mental health issues turned into one of the funniest, touching and entertaining films of the year. Go see Silver Linings Playbook. It's worth it.


  1. This sounds brilliant to me man. It's awesome to read this premise, to me it sounds different and interesting and I'd love to watch it to see how it all plays out, great review mate. So cool to read about you and the drums as well, I'm glad you've got that passion in your life.

  2. Well, if it's that good I'll keep an eye open. Hadn't heard of it 'til now.