Opinion: Charming, heart warming performances in “Silver Linings Playbook”


Based on the book of the same name, "Silver Linings Playbook" does not disappoint.  Director David O. Russell is best known for his wacky films and this is no exception.            

Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper both shine as their quirky characters, Tiffany and Pat. Cooper plays Pat Solatano, a bipolar history teacher. After discovering his wife cheating on him, Pat assaults the other man, which earns him a stint in a mental hospital.  

Once Pat is released from the mental hospital, he finds that his ex-wife has taken out a restraining order against him so that he cannot get in touch with her. Despite his many struggles, Pat tries to focus on staying positive and managing his bipolar disorder without medication. 

Pat ends up living with his parents, Pat Sr. and Dolores. His father is a gambler who superstitiously believes that watching Philadelphia Eagles football games with his son brings the team good luck. Pat Sr. didn't know that his son's luck was about to drastically change. 

When Pat meets Tiffany at a friend’s dinner party, the two quickly feel a connection.  Since Tiffany has just lost her husband in a car accident, the two bond over the loves they have lost. By coincidence, they met each other while running one day, and began exercising together. 

Tiffany becomes Pat’s way to communicate with his former wife. She gives the letters to Pat’s ex-wife in return for being him being her partner for a community dance competition.  

When Tiffany and Pat finally perform the dance they have been practicing throughout the film, the scene is charming, funky and warm-hearted, perfectly reflecting the film's overall tone. 

The film benefits greatly from the evident chemistry between Lawrence and Cooper. Lawrence owns the screen, delivering a performance worthy of an Academy Award nomination.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars.