Author Topic: Silver Linings Playbook  (Read 11397 times)

MP

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Re: Silver Linings Playbook
« Reply #20 on: November 27, 2012, 01:35:10 PM »
My review argues that Russell works within a recognisable genre in order take it to the logical extreme of hysteria.

I also offer some interpretation of the Hemingway book.

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Russell plays things on the strategic side of comedic. In an early scene that made it to the trailers intact, Pat throws a Hemingway paperback through his window in rage (he doesn't know his own strength!), unable to accept its downer ending. Ranting to his parents (Jacki Weaver and Robert De Niro) in the middle of the night, he calls for more escapism in art. On the one hand, this sets up both Pat's own wish for a fantasist's happy ending while at the same time lays out his character arc - a maturing process whose outcome obviously includes ditching said ending after all. On the other hand, however, throwing Hemingway out of the window deceives us into rooting for an ending that is equally escapist, but disguised as somehow more plausible (read "refreshing!", "unconventional!", "original!", "quirky!"). In this sense, the film is able to forget about the difficulties of mental illness about halfway through and focus instead on the finer details of an illegal wager and the emotional stakes of a hopeless dance routine, which concludes with a Lost In Translation-syle inaudible whisper. Pat's arc might resemble that of Mike Peters, meanwhile, the sulky dreamer played by Jon Favreau in Swingers (1996) - which is only a spoiler if this rom-com's ending was never set up so neatly (even its title pitches quirk and convention against one another).

MP

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Re: Silver Linings Playbook
« Reply #21 on: November 27, 2012, 04:45:19 PM »
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(Cooper and Lawrence are both very likeable, though to say they're excellent implies their characters are plausibly scripted)
^Key to comments on performances, I think. I feel the same way about those accolades piled on Penelope Cruz for Vicky Cristina Barcelona, when all she's playing is some stereotypical Feisty Other.

FLYmeatwad

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Re: Silver Linings Playbook
« Reply #22 on: November 27, 2012, 09:19:25 PM »
I would stereotype her feisty other  :o :-[

Alan Smithee

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Re: Silver Linings Playbook
« Reply #23 on: December 28, 2012, 11:05:58 PM »
Deniro's performance felt like he was doin "Jimmy Conway stay at home dad".

1SO

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Re: Silver Linings Playbook
« Reply #24 on: January 11, 2013, 10:50:25 PM »
Finally got a chance to watch this. A very difficult movie that wants you to not like it. The script is much softer than what David O. Russell does with it. He challenges you to identify emotionally with characters you're not likely to connect with on other levels. He can't hide all of the material's B.S. movie moments, but I think he sees that as part of the challenge.

Hell, I didn't like this movie much at the beginning. I was very much understanding what Adam was having a problem with. The camerawork felt random in places and the editing was all over, deliberately preventing a rhythm from being established. It's the most discomfort I got from a film I was trying to get into since Punch-Drunk Love. There's a chaos to these people's lives, even more so than in The Fighter, that Russell captures with real skill.

I talked about the enigma of Holy Rollers and that ultimately I need to decide what the film means to me because Leos Carax isn't going to put it together for me. (In school I was told that great art can usually support multiple interpretations.) I like reading all the prior posts because I pretty much agree or at least understand where everyone is coming from. I don't know how to feel about Pat and Tiffany, Pat's parents, the whole sports team mentality. I have my opinions, but nothing that I believe concretely because there's too much messiness. Plus I like looking at these dynamics from different ways. I like having the option to do that and not feel like I'm wrong or that the film doesn't have its own answer, which is my problem with Holy Motors. Don't ask me to explain why Jennifer Lawrence or Bradley Cooper do some of the things they do. I was too busy enjoying the fireworks they could create with any situation.

I hated the neighborhood kid attempting to make a flipcam documentary. It ended up being only 2 scenes, but they were both terrible. I also didn't like the Eagles parking lot with the slow motion pep rally. I see now Russell was setting up the atmosphere of the inevitable drama, but I thought the film went right off the cliff for a moment. De Niro was mostly uninspired, but he did have a couple of nice moments, my favorite being his speech to Cooper at the dance. Jacki Weaver was completely wasted. Nothing to see here. I've liked Bradley Cooper since "Alias", and while this doesn't show too much surprise in his acting, it places him into more elevated dramatic surroundings, which maybe will earn him more respect and better dramatic roles in the future.
RATING: * * *

Silver Linings Playbook is my new #7 film of 2012.
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Osprey

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Re: Silver Linings Playbook
« Reply #25 on: January 23, 2013, 10:58:45 PM »
The light touch with mental illness is pretty unbearable to me.  There are people with flat out psychosis who live in observed group housing in public settings.  To think that quirky, temperamental, narcissistic Pat gets 8 MONTHS of commitment is laughable.  So is his funny buddy Chris Tucker.
I appreciate it's a comedy, but couldn't they show us one severely ill person?  People who are really in a manic phase or in a severe depression and really need inpatient hospitalization could have been shown and it would have added gravitas.

And BTW, why is Pat committed to a state hospital in Baltimore, Maryland when he lives in Philadelphia?

ses

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Re: Silver Linings Playbook
« Reply #26 on: January 23, 2013, 11:04:46 PM »
That bothered me as well Osprey.  Anybody that has had experience with someone who has bipolar disorder knows that it isn't handled in that way.  The conventional ending acts like it's all going to be okay, he's taking his meds, he's found love, it will all be okay.  If you are going to tackle something as serious as bipolar disorder, please give it the seriousness it deserves. 

I dated someone with bipolar disorder for four years, and he was hospitalized in group settings several times, never for 8 months, but for several weeks at a time.  He never had an incident like the one described in the movie though. 

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Bondo

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Re: Silver Linings Playbook
« Reply #27 on: January 24, 2013, 07:30:13 AM »
Yeah, it plays into the notion that if you are crazy, all you really need to get control is someone else crazy to love you. This is a dangerous notion really.

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Re: Silver Linings Playbook
« Reply #28 on: January 24, 2013, 03:07:49 PM »
He never had an incident like the one described in the movie though.

Exactly. Much more worrisome to me is how they got him out. It is very contrived. It makes the psychiatric office look incredibly incompetent. They would hsve noticed through his behavior that he was not taking the pills. The simple trick of spitting it out he has is not enough. Those pills are drastic mood changers.

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Re: Silver Linings Playbook
« Reply #29 on: January 27, 2013, 12:25:30 PM »
Yeah, it plays into the notion that if you are crazy, all you really need to get control is someone else crazy to love you. This is a dangerous notion really.

This theme plagued the entire movie for me, and ruins its effectiveness. 

That and the contrived parlay they make.  It felt like something that was written in a first draft and the thought "well, we can change this later to something realistic to bring stakes to the dance competition" and then they forgot to do that.
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