|The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:|
|Original title:||Silver Linings Playbook|
|Genre:||Tragicomedy, Comedy, Romance, Drama|
|Direction:||David O. Russell|
|Production country:||USA 2012|
|Running time:||Approx. 122 min.|
Eight months is enough! Despite doctors strongly advising him not to, Pat Solatano (Bradley Cooper), after serving the court-ordered time, leaves the mental institution he was committed to after brutally beating up his wife's lover. Now there is only one goal for Pat: he wants his Nikki back. With no job, no house, and a restraining order, that's not so easy. While he is forced to move back in with his parents (Robert De Niro and Jacki Weaver), he tries against all odds to get his life back on track. But then he meets young Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence), who has also been completely thrown off course after the sudden death of her husband. She offers to help him get in touch with Nikki. In return, Pat is to accompany her to a dance competition. In order to do that, however, Pat has to learn how to dance first. And that brings him and Tiffany closer in a way that reveals an unexpected silver lining on a previously bleak horizon.
Two years after his two-time Oscar winner The Fighter, David O. Russell delivers a more than fitting follow-up with Silver Linings. Based on the best-selling book The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick, Russell has crafted a wonderfully unsentimental blend of drama, comedy and romance that delights with wonderfully drawn characters, quirky humour and genuine emotion far removed from any form of kitsch or cliché. Admittedly, some scenes in which Pat's somewhat neurotic family engages in fierce verbal sparring seem a bit overdone and exhausting. But these are admittedly only very small clouds in an otherwise almost perfect sky.
The film is carried not only by its wonderful script, but also by the perfectly cast actors. Bradley Cooper delivers an extremely multi-faceted, Oscar-worthy performance. Whether it's Pat's freak-out while reading a Hemingway novel, his first non-date with Tiffany, or his unwavering enthusiasm in his quest to win Nikki back, Cooper does a first-rate job of bringing this difficult character to life with quirky charm and emotional complexity. Even though Pat doesn't always show particular sensitivity towards his fellow man, and especially Tiffany, and vehemently refuses to face reality, his character always remains sympathetic thanks to Cooper's engaging performance, which is hugely important to the film's success.
Jennifer Lawrence's performance is on par with Bradley Cooper's fine performance. She perfectly manages to believably portray Tiffany as outwardly cynical, strong and emotionally detached, but in reality extremely vulnerable and filled with enormous sadness and longing. With this stirring portrayal, Lawrence proves that she is an extremely versatile and genuinely good actress who, almost incidentally, also exudes a fair amount of sex appeal.
Next to this great duo, the rest of the cast admittedly gets a little lost. Whether a wonderfully quirky Robert de Niro, who delights as Pat's extremely superstitious father, or Chris Tucker as Pat's buddy from the psychiatric ward, who never misses an opportunity to storm out of the asylum, almost all of the supporting actors deliver quite great performances. However, they just can't compete against the two leads and the sizzling chemistry that exists between them. This may sound a bit negative, but in the end it is absolutely appropriate to the story and also to the production.
Silver Linings manages the feat of dealing with inherently heavy topics such as the death of a loved one, depression or adultery with an infectious lightness of touch, without sacrificing a certain dramatic depth. David O. Russell has created a hilarious, bittersweet and touching comedy that in the end shows that there is always a glimmer of hope even in the darkest of times. Without a doubt the most beautiful unromantic romance since (500) Days of Summer and already one of the highlights of the young cinema year 2013. absolutely worth seeing!!!!
An article by Frankfurt-Tipp