by Coop Cooper
“Silver Linings Playbook” – Bradley Cooper plays Pat, a severely bipolar ex-teacher who has been released from a mental health facility which he was in for assaulting his wife’s lover. He goes home to live with his soft-hearted mother (Jacki Weaver) and his beleaguered bookie dad (Robert De Niro), and he immediately begins to make their lives miserable. Obsessed with reconnecting with his ex, he alienates everyone around him until he meets Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence) who is just as damaged and overbearing as he is. The two form an unlikely friendship as Tiffany ropes him into a dance competition which becomes a form of therapy for them both.
This film has some of the best performances of 2012 and it is no surprise it has been nominated for multiple Oscars and has won many awards already. Both Cooper and Lawrence are fantastic and have some of the best chemistry I’ve seen in an onscreen couple in years. The supporting A-list cast gives it all they’ve got. Jacki Weaver is sweet and naïve like Edith Bunker and De Niro looks like he’s not phoning it in for the first time since “Ronin” back in 1998.
Romantic comedies are usually my least favorite genre because of their insufferable predictability but “Silver Linings Playbook” improves upon the formula. I think it’s the best romantic comedy to release since “When Harry Met Sally” and “Forget Paris.” This one is a must-see. Projected rental release date: February or March of 2013.
5 out of 5 stars