Monday, 7 January 2013

Silver Linings Playbook Review

Here's another one that I was skeptical about.  From all of the marketing materials, it looked like it was going to be another run of the mill romantic comedy movie or drama that had no real inspiration behind it.  Then, as we were watching TV one night, an ad for it came on and it said it was up for some awards.  Steph also said that she'd like to see it.  So I figured the nominations and the fact that my girlfriend has gone to see a lot of movies with me that she would normally pass on was enough for me to give it a shot.  After all, it does have some acting talent in it with Bradley Cooper and Robert DeNiro.  After just a few minutes in, I realized that I had been wrong about it and was very glad to be in the theatre.

Like 50/50, Silver Linings takes a pretty serious topic that could have some serious and tragic results for the people involved and uses it to make the viewer laugh.  It's easy to take afflictions and make us laugh.  It's another thing entirely to make us laugh without having us lose respect and sympathy for those involved.  Silver Linings does a great job of using comedy to tell a story about finding the blessing in disguise when your whole life is turned upside down and there seems to be no way out (a situation that three characters in this film face).

Here's a few words I thought I'd never communicate: This was a great performance by Chris Tucker.  Even though he still had the annoying, high pitched voice (it's his voice and we have to deal with it), there was no air of the fast-talking "Vince Vaughnesque" personality that he almost always brings to his characters.  He actually steals almost all of his scenes and is a silver lining in his own right because you think, "at least they're not him."  And it doesn't stop there.  All of the acting performances are very solid.  But this is especially true of Cooper.  He naturally has this look in his eye that can convey a bit of "controlled crazy" that can come in handy for just about any role.  He used that in Silver Linings to portray a delusional character that slowly realizes what his life has actually become.  There is also perfect timing in all of his delivery and actions.

Definitely see it.  It's one of those that takes you through a range of emotion for two hours but the end result is "feel good."

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