Movies

Silver Linings Playbook

Release Date 21 Nov 2012 21 Apr 2013

  • User rating
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.
  • Critic rating
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.

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Life doesn’t always go according to plan…Pat Solitano (Bradley Cooper) has lost everything — his house, his job, and his wife. He now finds himself living back with his mother (Jacki Weaver) and father (Robert DeNiro) after spending eight months in a state institution on a plea bargain. Pat is determined to rebuild his life, remain positive and reunite with his wife, despite the challenging circumstances of their separation. When Pat meets Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence), a mysterious girl with problems of her own, things get complicated. Tiffany offers to help Pat reconnect with his wife, but only if he’ll do something very important for her in return. As their deal plays out, an unexpected bond begins to form between them, and silver linings appear in both of their lives. The Weinstein Company presents SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK, a family drama, comedy and love story based on the bestselling novel by Matthew Quick, written and directed by David O. Russell (THE FIGHTER, FLIRTING WITH DISASTER).

Cast:
Bradley Cooper | Jennifer Lawrence | Robert De Niro | Jacki Weaver

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  • Critic rating
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.

Movies.ie Critic Review

MOVIES.IE’S ONE TO WATCH!
SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK (USA/15/117mins)
Directed by David O. Russell.
Starring Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Jacki Wever, Chris Tucker, Julia Stiles, Matthew Russellm, Brea Bee.
THE PLOT: Having served his time in a mental hospital for attacking his wife’s lover, Pat Solitano (Cooper) is convinced that he can not only beat his bipolar disorder sans medication but, he can also win back the affections of his petrified spouse, Nikki (Bee). And when he finds an ally in the sleazy-going young widow Tiffany (Lawrence), Pat is even more convinced of his plan. Tiffany will get a secret message to Nikki. Only Nikki not only fails to do so, but she fakes a reply too. Oh, and just to add to the madness, Tiffany decides entering a dance competition will help keep her new man in check, something his dad (De Niro) fights, given that he firmly believes that having his son being at home helps his beloved football team win…
THE VERDICT: Okay, so that plot sounds a little bonkers, I grant you. And it is all held together by a man who has been known to be a little bonkers himself (Russell having even managed to ruffle George Clooney feathers). But, the surprising truth about this deliberately unconventional romantic comedy is that it’s truly romantic and truly funny – and all without ever once straying into Gerard Butler country. The smarts are actually smart here, as opposed to merely slick. It’s like David O. Russell took his 2004 offering I Heart Huckabees and made it likeable. And actually funny.
In pretty much the same way that he injected new life into the one-last-round boxer genre with The Fighter, here – with a script based on David Quick’s 2008 novel – Russell manages to reinvent another of cinema’s well-worn wheels. The key this time out – and perhaps even with The Fighter – is the simple underlining belief that, deep down and sometimes not so deep down, we’re all pretty much bonkers.

RATING: 4/5

Review by P Byrne

  • Avg User rating
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.

User Reviews

    • Currently 4/5 Stars.

    BIGBADBRIAN

    Great little movie. Cooper and Lawrence have great chemistry together. The script is funny and sharp. The biggest surprise was Robert De Niro is actually back on top form here. Very enjoyable.

    • Currently 3/5 Stars.

    Onionhead

    Silver Linings Playbook is a peculiar film, because is a romantic comedy that breaks all the previews standards of that genre. Basically is the typical love story, but the interesting thing is that all the cast have a psychological problem. Starting by the protagonist couple, we see Pat (unexpectedly well played by Bradley Cooper) a bipolar that speaks before thinking, then Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence as marvelous as always) a widow with borderline personality. The dynamic that is generated between them is based in learning how to live a normal life and be adapted to social conventions. The thing is that consequence of their condition the family and friends attempt to control their lives (the topic of the great power of the family is also noticeable in The Fighter). The family of the protagonist also is a dilemma; the father is an addicted to gambling with OCD and felt guilty because how his son turned out; the mother has an extreme necessity that all the relationships of the family maintain in order, living in denial; the brother lives with a superiority complex, but enters to a contradiction because of Pat. Then we have the friend of the protagonist who has problems with his wife so he release tension breaking stuff at his garage with hard music; the friend of the hospital invents excuses to run away and the doctor tries to fit in the American society. This great cast is amazingly well managed by David O. Russell, the only problem is that at the end the movie returns to the stereotypes of simple romantic comedies.

    • Currently 4/5 Stars.

    nkWhiteStar

    "Silver Linings Playbook" is a multi Oscar nominated romantic drama that isn't like the usual breed of rom-coms we are subjected to at all. Patrick Solitaro (Bradley Cooper) starts the film being released from a mental health centre, after being admitted there due to suffering from a bipolar disorder and anxiety attacks. He is focused on losing weight and returning to his old job, which may allow him to return to his former girlfriend Nikki. However he refuses to take his medication and the effects of the illness don't take long to return. His mandatory meeting with his therapist go some way towards him recovering, but it will take far more for him to get back on track. During a dinner at his friend's house he meets Tiffany Maxwell (Jenifer Lawrence) who appears to suffer from the same conditions that he does. They start a rather odd friendship where their condition brings them together despite the uncertainty of those around them. Tiffany also knows Nikki, which opens a door for Patrick to contact her. The film follows their at time unstable, but growing relationship while their actions take significant effects upon their families, but with the ultimate hope that it may be the solution that helps all of them as a whole. So this movie is one part Romantic Comedy, one part Drama, and one part Indie Film. And it surprisingly balances all of these very well. You get a real sense of Patrick's daily struggle with his condition, but see through his eyes how he feels at any given time. His emotions can change almost instantaneously and go right to the extreme ends of the spectrum. His character is painted in a very believable manner, and one that isn't shown in films that often. The same is said for his family, where his father has ADD and his mother struggles to keep things level. Jenifer Lawrence though, is spectacular from her first appearance in this movie. She add a whole new dimension to what had been a drama, and starts to weave the connecting stories together in an unconventional, but recognisable manner. She gives a great performance and devoted herself entirely to her character. In fact, most of the cast is of a pretty high standard, even Chris Tucker as Patrick's friend inside the Mental Facility. The story focuses very much on the development of the relationships and connections between the characters initially, but then adds depth through a rather sweet romance that slowly develops and building to a climax which brings everything together to a sharp point. In short the film isn't afraid to be a little uncomfortably-realistic at times, but retains a sense of optimism throughout. By the end you can't help but feel pleased for everyone involved, because they have earned everything they had fought for. Visually it is very well constructed without over-reaching to be flashy, the soundtrack is subtle and lets the scenes deliver the emotional impact, and it feels like a unique product. Which in this genre is something that has to be applauded. I'll give this an (8.5/10); it is a slow movie at times that requires you to... read into all the emotions that are going on. But it is worth it if you do so. There's a great script to discover, realistic character interactions and quite a sweet romance story too. ---nkWhiteStar---

    • Currently 3/5 Stars.

    mart

    Silver Linings Playbook is a fine, funny film, and one that should charm viewers who haven't been tricked by all those Oscar nominations into anticipating it as some kind of world-changing work of art for the ages.

    • Currently 4/5 Stars.

    roberthughes23

    No surprise why this was nominated and picked up many awards. It is a great story with great acting from all characters. Both leads roles are fantastic and all supporting roles add something extra to the movie. It is full of emotion and can go from sad to funny in an instance.

    • Currently 4/5 Stars.

    maircc

    • Currently 3/5 Stars.

    vepyewwo

    Very enjoyable with a great cast and great performances - the best I've ever seen Bradley Cooper and the most I've liked Robert DeNiro for ages. Funny and touching, well worth going to see.

    • Currently 5/5 Stars.

    alanhorkan

    Loved it. Went for a second viewing too. Best performance from De Niro in years, I totally was dreading the prospect of him in a comedy. Chris Tucker wasn't particularly annoying either. Cooper is a likable loon, and Lawrence is compelling and mature beyond her 21 years, the age difference is quickly forgotten if it is even noticed, and she easily holds her own against Cooper and DeNiro. The film it not quite as dark as I expected, it goes a bit "Strictly Ballroom" for bit, and the ending is perhaps a bit too neat and tidy. I'll probably see it a third time before leaves cinemas.

    • Currently 4/5 Stars.

    Randy

    I didn't like the Fighter but this one is a gem. Bradley Cooper is a capable lead. Jennifer Lawrence is radiant, upstaging even De Niro. Everyone's obsessed with the worst team at American football in the states and cannot cope with Pat's bipolar disorder. However, he finds his own way to cope with life and a likeminded 'crazy' person along the way.

    • Currently 3/5 Stars.

    Nicola Byrne

    I have to say that it was great seeing Bradley Cooper in a more serious role, even though it was funny at times, I think this will open doors for him. The rest of the cast were also great... I went to see this film without any expections and found it was good. I'd recommend for a good dvd night.

    • Currently 4/5 Stars.

    vu1999uk

    Very good film that manages to do what so many other dramadies can't. Be both very funny and dramatic when it needs to be. Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence are both outstanding (Cooper has never been better), and are well supported by the always good DeNiro.

    • Currently 3/5 Stars.

    hegothelips

    Cooper and Lawrence are the real winners here, and together they deliver a dramedy tour de force. Yes, Cooper has been more hit-or-miss over the years, but Lawrence proves yet again that she’s still the beacon of talent brought to light in Winter’s Bone. When the nominations are announced early next year, don’t be surprised to find plenty of deserved love for Silver Linings Playbook.

    • Currently 4/5 Stars.

    filmbuff2011

    Director David O. Russell has always been strong on characterisation. While his previous film, The Fighter, was over-rated, his new film Silver Linings Playbook deserves all the attention it's getting. Full of sharply-sketched characters, it's an unconventional romcom about mental illness. Pat (Bradley Cooper) is just out of a mental institution. He has an undiagnosed bipolar personality disorder and still imagines that his now-distant wife will get back with him. Essentially a screw-up, he meets Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence), also a screw-up prone to medication. In a world of sane people, only Pat can identify with Tiffany who helps him rediscover his purpose in life through dance. These two were made for each other... Despite the age difference between the two actors, their characters are fully believable. Lawrence has always seemed older than her actual age, so the chemistry with Cooper is obvious. Both give fine, sparky performances and they're well-supported by a cast that includes Robert De Niro (not embarrassing himself for a change) and Chris Tucker (not being annoying for a change). Russell may not be saying much about mental illness and how to treat it, but he does say that it can be lived with through connecting with like-minded people. It's a tad overlong, but it's time well-spent with these oddball characters. In other words, very much a David O. Russell film.

    • Currently 3/5 Stars.

    lisabyrnedub@hotmail.com

    This is a feel good movie. Bradley Cooper loses everything and is hospitalised with his bi-polar and his actions over his marriage break up. He goes home and forms an unusual relationship while doing something positive... as he says, you have to look for the silver lining :).I really liked the ending too... go see it!

    • Currently 3/5 Stars.

    Amandareid007

    This is a really funny film with some great performances, but sadly the second half shows that Russell lost track of what was important in the story. This still balances out to a good movie, [but] it could have been great had it stayed on course.

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