Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

Director: David O. Russell

Major Actors: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, and Chris Tucker

IMDb rating: 9/10 (click for page)

I really only need to say one thing in this review: Russell is a genius. This is the third film I have seen by Russell and they have all been great. But since that really wouldn’t be much of review I guess I will write a little more. Starting with the story. (So if you do no want to know anything about the story just skip the next paragraph)

As this is a romantic comedy there really is no special twist in the plot expect in the characters. The romantic leads are Pat and Tiffany played by Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence respectably. The one thing they each have in common is they both have been in and out of mental institutions, which makes for some really funny scenes. The interesting thing about the story is as both Pat and Tiffany begin to be around each other more. Things start to become more normal in the film but I haven’t decided is it they that get less crazy or everyone around them looks more crazy. All in all, even though you know what is going to happen at the end, it is still a very entertaining story.

The two romantic lead performances, by both Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence, are great. First Bradley Cooper is an actor I have never really enjoyed or disliked watching. But Russell once again shows his knack for taking a mediocre actor like Cooper and pulling out a great performance. In fact, he was perfect for the role. The fast talking crazy character of Pat played right into what Cooper is good at. He really is just a joy to watch on screen and this may lead him to Oscar nomination.

Before I speak about Jennifer’s performance, I must rewind to a few months back to when The Hunger Games came out. I was to say the least berated for my high rating of HG (For reference I rated it an 8 out of 10). At the time, I really couldn’t say why I enjoyed it as much as I did. All I knew is I enjoyed it. I now have an answer in two words: Jennifer Lawrence. In both The Hunger Games and Silver Linings Playbook, she is just a joy to watch. So it could be pretty safe to say she has become one of my favorite actresses. One last thing, she and Cooper are able to play great off each other and she just like Cooper should get an Oscar nomination.

Before I conclude, I want to mention one more thing. I have watched enough comedies to know that the side character are sometimes what makes or breaks it. And all of the side characters are thoroughly entertaining. There are two which stick out in my mind. The first is the father played by Robert De Niro, need I say more. The second is Pat’s friend from the mental institution played by Chris Tucker. And he is used perfectly by which I mean every scene he is in is funny. They are in such small dose that you never get bored of seeing him on screen.

In conclusion, this is one of the best films of the year and should get some Oscar nods. And while I do not think Silver Linings Playbook will win. It may be the one I cheer because it would be nice for a change to see an outright comedy win it all. But the Academy rarely choose comedies which is too bad. So you should definitely go see this film.

P.S. Just to clarify this is definitely the better of the two performance by Jennifer Lawrence.

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