Friday, January 25, 2013

Just watched...

...the very recent "Silver Linings Playbook" with Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence.

For the SAG awards, since I am a voting SAG member, I received a screener copy of "Silver Linings Playbook" and it turned out to be a peculiar experience. I did not know too much about the film going into it, which is how I usually like to see a film. I want to experience it and have it unfold for me as the screenwriter and director intended. In an effort to give you roughly that same experience (which I generally try to do in any film or book review here on "Oh, By The Way"), Bradley Cooper plays a young man who is bi-polar. It seems like a formula for an Academy Award nomination, or even win. Characters who are mentally unstable or who have handicaps are usually sure-fire Academy fodder. But watching it was another story. It seemed at first like it was going to be a statement or exploration of bi-polarism or mental illness, perhaps commenting on the stigma that is still attached to such issues or how people with such conditions are treated. But then it seemed like it wanted to be a family drama. Well, I guess those two areas often go hand in hand. But then it seemed like it wanted to be a romantic comedy. And then it was a feel-good, can-do movie. And then... well, I don't know, it got a bit muddied by then. Are there good performances? Yes. Bradley Cooper is good and Jennifer Lawrence really stands out. De Niro seems a bit wasted, but whatever... he adds some nice texture. And was it an interesting story? Well, yes. But it just felt, stylistically speaking, disjointed. Still good. Just... peculiarly cobbled together, as though a different writer and director stepped in every 15 minutes...

Recommend? Um... okay, yeah sure.

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