Film review: Silver Linings Playbook

KENNETH CHAPMAN
Last updated 16:46 14/02/2013
Silver Linings Playbook
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BEAUTIFUL LOSERS: Jennifer Lawerence and Bradley Cooper kook up the screen in Silver Linings Playbook, a refreshingly left-field romantic comedy.

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PREVIEW: SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK (M) (122 min) 

Directed By David O Russell. Starring Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro

I don't want to bury the lead here so let me come right out and say it - Silver Linings Playbook is quite possibly a perfect film.

I've been a fan of David O Russell for a few years now and having seen his previous five features, especially loving I Heart Huckabees and The Fighter, I feel confident in saying this is his best film to date. So do yourself a favour and go see it.

The film kicks off with Pat (Cooper) being released from a mental health clinic. He must then get a grip on his bipolar disorder and in doing so, win back his wife's heart.

Pat moves back in with his parents (De Niro and Jacki Weaver) and finds himself caught up in an unlikely friendship with Tiffany (Lawrence), who has also moved back in with her parents.

Throughout the film, Pat's friendship with Tiffany starts to become a prominent part in his building of character and the management of his bipolar disorder. That's all anyone really needs to know about the story.

Russell hits every comedic and emotional button in this film, as if it was a perfectly built machine. You'll be laughing one minute, on the verge of tears the next, but the emotions never feel forced, not for a second. This is due largely to the great performances given by the actors.

Cooper is probably best know for The Hangover. I have since seen him in Valentines Day, The A-Team, Limitless, The Words and others, and he's slowly been growing on me. With Silver Linings Playbook not only do I love him, but I believe he is up there with the best. He deserves his Oscar nod for this.

Lawrence, unlike Cooper, had won my heart completely ever since Winter's Bone. Once again she proves herself as a force to be reckoned with and not one to ever be pigeon-holed. She takes on a role that was supposed to be played by someone at least five years older than her but she nails it.

The chemistry between the two is what really makes Silver Linings Playbook work. Also, De Niro is, no surprises, flawless. It's great to see him in something a lot more credible than that of most of his recent appearances on the screen.

I believe Silver Linings Playbook has a very large audience and recommend it to pretty much everyone bar young children.

If you're looking for a quality film by a now-seasoned director, then Silver Linings Playbook is all yours.

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- The Wellingtonian

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