Redbox Review: Silver Linings Playbook

slpMovie: Silver Linings Playbook

Rating: 7/10

Memorable Line: Tiffany: You let me lie to you for a week? Pat: I was just trying to be romantic!

Crude. Odd. Duysfunctional? I’ll admit, This is what I thought of Silver Linings Playbook when I stopped watching it the first time. It just didn’t feel like a real movie, it started so abrupt, like the audience just got thrown into the plot without any warning whatsoever. The camera even seemed to follow the actors like a normal person would, hovering over their shoulders, peeking into their lives the same kind of unashamed abandon that the characters themselves were living in.

But that’s what made this movie good. Silver Linings Playbook  is about a guy, Pat Solantano (played by Bradley Cooper) who is sprung out by his mom from a mental health institute after being diagnosed with bipolar disorder. He was sent to the institute in the first place after beating up the lover of his wife, Nikki, and promptly diagnosed with bipolar disorder. He spends all his time in and out of the institute trying to turn himself into the man that his wife wanted him to be when they were married, but dysfunctional relationships with his parents and friends makes this difficult. Then he finds himself forced to help another woman, Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence), so he can slip a letter to his wife around the restraining order Nikki has placed on him. Tiffany has a past of her own that makes her seem just as crazy and off-the-wall as Pat is, and somehow this is what drives the two together in the end.

Don’t expect a chick flick out of this one. Silver Linings Playbook deals with such a realistic story that trying to compare it to a chick flick would make it seem even more convoluted than it already is. So take it for what it is: about keeping the little things in life, like songs, from turning into monsters. It’s about always trying to find the silver lining in everything, like Pat keeps saying in the beginning of the movie. I was a little put off by all the swearing and sexual inuendos in the beginning, but eventually I realized all the crudeness in the film is on purpose. It may not always feel like it, but life is raw.

At one point Tiffany says, “There will always be a part of me that is dirty and sloppy, but I like that, just like all the other parts of myself. I can forgive. Can you say the same for yourself? Can you forgive? Are you capable of that?” That’s what I liked best about this movie. Sure the characters swear a lot etc. etc., but I’ve got this crazy outrageous idea that there’s more to people than their brokenness. It isn’t their faults that defined these characters, and we can’t be so close minded to let it define the people we meet every day. They were able to overcome them, or at least to make peace with them, to find the silver lining in the midst of all the crap going on in their lives. I ask myself, could these estranged, mentally unstable characters be that kind of example for someone like me, whose life is relatively well held together. I answer myself: yes.

Hannah DeVries, Co-edior

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