IanTheCool's Reviews
Short Reviews of Movies, Board Games, and Other Stuff

Silver Linings Playbook

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Silver Linings Playbook is essentially a romantic comedy involving people with mental health issues. But the question is, is that enough to set it apart from that most trite of genres? The answer, surprisingly, is yes. The characters and their unique problems are just enough to make this a watchable and enjoyable film, despite how rooted it is in the rom-com tradition.

Bradley Cooper plays Patrick, a bipolar teacher who beat up his wife’s lover. As he tries to get his life on track he meets Tiffany, played by Jennifer Lawrence, who has her own problems. They join a dancing competition together. At this point I was worried it would turn into Dancing with the Stars, but luckily the dancing was a minor part, and when they did do their dance, it actually turned out quite comical.

Now, this movie is certainly watchable and when it was finished I was glad to have seen it. But that isn’t to say that it doesn’t have any flaws. There were three major problems which keeps this movie out of the “great” level. They are as follows:

  • The sound mixing was actually quite bad. The soundtrack came in far too loud and was distracting when it drowned out the dialogue. A minor quibble perhaps, but one which I found very noticeable, to I am pointing it out nonetheless.
  • The supporting characters turned into bland rom-com tag-a-longs. I am mostly refering to Chris Tucker’s fellow mental hospital patient, who really had no purpose but kept showing up anyways, and the therapist, which sure was fun to see him at the Eagles game, but the fact that he kept hanging around this family was quite ridiculous. And by the end it was a though all these minor character who would have a small part in the film were suddenly all part of a troupe at the end. Its the kind of thing expected from lesser, run-of-the-mill films.
  • And I have to admit that the third problem was actually Jennifer Lawrence, who I generally like. But here she came off as simply trying to hard. She rarely felt genuine and never sunk into the role enough to make me forget she was acting. This is in stark contrast to Bradley Cooper who was able to sink into his character very well.

So there you have it, my thoughts on Silver Linings Playbook. It was a nice watch, but I can’t see it being all too memorable of a movie down the road.
8/10

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5 Responses to “Silver Linings Playbook”

  1. Good review Ian. Got me happy, got me cheerful, got me romantic, and got me a dramatic as well. All that I needed for a sweet viewing.

  2. Nice review. I enjoyed it as well and it had some strong performances, but I do agree it had flaws, particularly with the ending.

  3. Nice write up Ian. I loved SLP, one of my favourites of last year. It did go a bit conventional towards the end but I really like Jennifer Lawrence, I thought she was excellent.

  4. I appreciate your thoughtful review of this highly-touted movie.

    I just saw “Silver Linings Playbook” yesterday and thought it was a fantastic film that simply went terribly wrong in the end. As someone with Bipolar, I’m looking to build a dialogue about it. As you have the chance, I’d love for you to read and respond to my review, here –

    http://writingforfoodinindy.wordpress.com/2013/05/22/the-hollywood-silver-linings-playbook-fake-right-go-wrong/


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