Silver Linings Playbook
'Silver Linings Playbook' is Director and Writer, David O. Russell's recent release. When I saw the trailer near the end of last year I wasn't that fussed about seeing it, but after reading the rave reviews it was getting I wanted to see what it was like for myself.
Pat (Bradley Cooper) is struggling to get his life back on track after he is released from a mental hospital after an 8 month stay. He is determined to win back his cheating ex wife (Brea Bee) in whatever way he can. After meeting up with old friends he meets Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence) who is recently widowed and also struggling to get herself back on her feet.
There are lots of reasons as to why I fell in love with this film but first I am going to start with the casting. I've never been a big fan of Bradley Cooper's as I only ever thought of him as a substandard actor (simply because of 'The Hangover', good film, but the acting, not so great). Yet his performance in 'Silver Linings..' is impeccable. Russell took a risk by making a rom-com film where the protagonist had a mental disorder, it could have offended a lot of people if it had been played in the wrong way. Cooper absolutely nails the character, with balance of aggression, excitement and fear just right for the scenes of his highs and lows. Jennifer Lawrence impressed me just as much as Cooper. She plays the fierce Tiffany with perfection. She constantly dominates the scenes, making sure you don't forget the part that she is playing in Pat's story. The chemistry between Cooper and Lawrence is also what makes the film even better. They just bounce of each other from scene to scene and you can't help but root for them at the end of the film. De Niro plays Pat's slightly OCD and extremely superstitious father. I can never fault De Niro. Although he doesn't have a major role in the film he, as always his character still makes and big impact on the film and the audience.
The second reason as to why I think this film is so brilliant is because of Russell's and the editors Jay Cassidy and Crispin Struthers. The film was laid out beautifully. There were lots of big close ups and quick zooms of the characters which at some points were a bit disorientating for the spectator, but I think it really helped us see the characters points of view more clearly. A part which sticks out for me is the scene where Cooper is talking to his therapist about the day his wife cheated, Russell filmed the memory through Cooper's point of view, which I really liked and worked really well. The editing used represents how both Tiffany and Pat see things, their state of mind is reflected in the editing.
Overall, I don't think the actors, or Russell, or the editors could have done any better with this film. It's made me gain a new respect for Bradley Cooper and kept my hopes high for Jennifer Lawrence too. A must watch!