3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Silver Linings Playbook [DVD] (DVD)
What a strange movie this is: always well acted and full of energy but lacking the courage of its early convictions to the extent that it ends like the most predictable of standard rom-coms.
I'm really not sure I've ever seen a film that loses its way quite this badly after such an excellent beginning and it confirms what I've often suspected about David O Russell: that for all his undoubted ability and quasi-indie sensibilities he's really just a wannabe audience pleaser prepared to compromise even his own films to send the paying punters out happy.
You can't fault the acting and it's especially good to see Robert De Niro strutting his stuff again after years of phoning it in. The first half is so sharp and dynamic that I didn't even mind that the treatment of mental illness is confused and the endless indulgence of the authorities to Bradley Cooper's antics highly unlikely. When you have characters this unpredictable and well drawn and a film that moves with such pace you can live with it. But as things wear on you start to realise that Russell is desperately looking for a conventional plot to hang it all on, and the slide into sentimentality and dumbed down multiplex-friendly uplift is so bad that by the penultimate scene you expect to see Billy Crystal chasing Meg Ryan down the street. What a let down, and what a waste of half a great movie.