Plot: the basic premise of the story rests on the unexpected mind of the main protagonist who starts living his life. Witty, Charming and to some extent naive, one might feel that Pat is stuck in a time wrap of sorts. That’s where, however, the charm of the story lies. Its very easy to churn out a story wherein exploring the social stigmas associated with mental illness. Here however is a character who is fun, humorous and living his life and exploring it as it comes. Thank God for Matthew Quick for not reducing mental illness to the level of a disease of sorts and develop the story which accepts and celebrates the situation whole heartedly, yet has an underlying sadness about it. Kudos to him to develop an anti-thesis in Tiffany, who too is as crazy as Pat, and THE silver lining of the story. The ending was as delightful in the book as it was in the movie
Movie vs Book: I read the book first so as to sustain my interest or else I would have lost interest in the book if i would have watched the movie first. The adaptation of the book left me a bit perplexed of sorts. Usually i like some parts of the book and some of the movie or like one over the other. However here was an adaptation which was not a sort of ‘faithful’ adaptation of the book yet it seemed to leave me with the same warmth as the book when it ended. The director seemed to have picked out the essence and somehow managed to bring it to the screen without tampering the soul of the plot. Yes there are many and i mean it MANY differences from the book, yet the movie is as witty as the book. The lead character, played by Bradley Cooper, is described as an undiagnosed bipolar, coming out of a rehablitation centre. The sometimes support he gets from his loved ones only exposes the fact that none of us are anything close to what could be described as “normal”. He meets an umbalanced young widow who promises to help him, in return for his help in getting what she wants.
The biggest surprise however was Jennifer Lawrence (though her oscar was not worthy since i was rooting for Emanuelle). The woman plays her character with such an engaging aggressiveness that it lets her dominate every scene she is in, raking up praise from under everyone’s nose. There’s a thin line to walk in crafting a comedy about mental illness. Going about it in the wrong way could not only result in something intensitive, but also idiotic, foolish and overdone attempt to commercialize it (as seen in many hindi movies ) . But thanks to Russel’s work, Silver Lining Playbook isn’t just a piece of entertainment filled with appealing, fun characters, but also a film that gets how crazy we all really are and in turn celebrates it in all its colors. A worth watch this one.
P.S. Anupam Kher has a bigger role in the book so am surprised about his blink-and-miss role. However having said that, who would miss a chance to work with Robert De Niro