52 Comments on this Post

  1. Excellent featurette I must admit, though this remains for me the year’s most unjustly awarded film. It’s record book comparison to IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT and ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST is more than exasperating.

    But may the fans rejoice. In a sense I envy them all.

  2. Sasha Stone

    Am right there with you, Sam. One guy on Twitter called it the Annie Hall for our age. That almost made my brain explode. I too envy them. I think it’s a “cute” movie but to me it is more on the level of The Goodbye Girl than Annie Hall. I like it up until the whole JuJu part and at that point it loses me. But I see that it’s a film a lot of people like and that makes it a major threat (not Argo).

  3. Agreed comprehensively Sasha. The ‘Goodbye Girl’ rather than ‘Annie Hall’ is dead-on for me too. Thank you.

  4. One guy on Twitter called it the Annie Hall for our age.

    To see how absurd that is, just imagine Tiffany and Pat as characters in Annie Hall. Here, let me help you.

  5. Bravo, Ryan – perfect link.

    Pieces of the film are fun and the acting is suitable, but to think that this could be the one that topples Lincoln, in a year like this, is deflating.

  6. Sasha Stone

    But Steve I can see the scenario playing out before my eyes. All SLP needs is one big win and they’ll all run up on stage like when they get the five at the dance competition and from then the race will be over. People will like to see them win. It’s the King’s Speech all over again. I think I’m going to call it “wounded dog syndrome.”

  7. I don’t know if you saw what I said on another thread this morning, but if HW gets a hat trick, esp. with SLP, it will be proof that he’s the Lance Arnstrong of the Oscar biz.

  8. Robert A.

    I remember reading something that compared SLP to Bringing Up Baby! I was in a foul mood for the rest of the day.

  9. representDLV

    While I do have a couple of issues with SLP, when it’s all said and done, it may have been my “favorite” film of the year. It’s the one movie this year that I’ve seen multiple times and still would like to see it again. It’s the one movie that I recommend to everyone.

    Movies like Lincoln, Life of Pi and Argo I respect, and as a film lover enjoyed. But ultimately I only enjoyed them because I (like the rest of the people on this site) over analyze films and see things that the average movie goer doesn’t even notice.

    I don’t know if SLP was the “best” film of the year, but it was the most enjoyable for me.

  10. I don’t want to come off as a detractor – it’s a pleasing movie in the vein of Neil Simon (although Simon would never have included the dance contest). Like Slumdog and TKS, it got its champagne bottle cracked on the hull at TIFF, so even if they tried downplaying that last fall, we should have seen it coming.

  11. Sasha Stone

    Read what representDLV wrote – that is how SLP could shred the film awards this year. Exactly like that. And he isn’t the first person I’ve heard say that.

  12. @ represendDLV

    Very good poinst. And aren’t the movies all about entertainment? At least for me they are.

    SLP was great, the performances amongst the best this year. Calling it over-awarded seems to me very artsy-fartsy; just because it is enjoyed and understood by everyone doesn’t mean it lacks depth. And even if it lacks depth, it doesn’t have to be bad, or “not-artful”. Just look at Super 8, Indiana Jones, Jaws, Bridesmaids and all that.

  13. They do want that SAG ensemble, don’t they?

    I loved The Goodbye Girl, but I see nothing so special about SLP.

    SLP could have been a much better character study about those which tries to portray. IMO, a darker tone would have made me more sympathetic to the story. I see it as a movie that doesn’t know what kind of story it wants to tell. The case for it is that, it’s cute and leaves you feeling good. However, in my case, as soon as I left the theater I didn’t care about the whole thing. “Strictly Ballroom” made me feel much better and elated than SLP when it was over. It is not a bad movie – the acting is solid, but nothing out of the ordinary. I liked the first part of the movie with the intensity and unguarded approach by Cooper. But at some point I was already feeling disconnected from the character’s plight.

    All I know is that I will be disappointed if it wins BP. I believe I’m the opposite of Wells…”Anything but SLP”.

  14. representDLV

    I do think SLP feels like Slumdog. It’s a feel good romantic comedy that takes the genre down a slightly different path. It’s easy to watch. It’s funny. It has heart. Most of the other movies may be “too deep” to win. Slavery, terrorism, death, etc. SLP doesn’t really tackle any big issues (it deals with mental health, but not really), but that may be why it ultimately wins.

    Having Harvey on its side definitely doesn’t hurt either.

  15. I guess my biggest problem with is the fact that it could very easily be done onstage – there’s nothing particularly “cinematic” about it (just like TKS). Could actually be more effective live given that Russell doesn’t really add much to it, other than words (adapted words).

  16. representDLV

    But the fact that it could be done on stage may be its strength. It’s an actors movie. It doesn’t rely on any of the other bells and whistles. And since the largest block of voters is made up of actors, that may help its chances.

  17. Say what you like, but Robert De Niro turned in one of his greatest performances ever (not top 5, but top 10 certainly). Much better than his performance in The Godfather: Part 2.

  18. Yeah, representDLV – I keep forgetting the actor’s block. You’d think they would be more fond of Lincoln with its higher overall pedigree.

    In theory, SAG should give us a strong hint at the verdict, but SAG is way off sometimes with regards to the Oscars (The Help, Gosford Park, etc).

    d2 – DeNiro was hotter than a comet in ’74. That Oscar was as much for Mean Streets (and his arrival on the scene) as it was for GII.

  19. Bleh bleh bleh

    There’s no doubt that it’s an ineptly made film. But good for all you guys who enjoyed it, and found that that redeemed it, on the whole. I found it unfunny, irritating and a bit insulting. Not enjoyable for me. So I can’t even lend my voice to that argument.

  20. Robert A.

    “Say what you like, but Robert De Niro turned in one of his greatest performances ever (not top 5, but top 10 certainly). Much better than his performance in The Godfather: Part 2.”

    Better than he was in Godfather, Part II? MUCH better?

    To quote Marge Gunderson: “I think I’m gonna barf.”

  21. Yeah, I just did barf.

  22. Ugh, The Goodbye Girl is so much better than this film. It actually works. And the performances are nuanced and credible. The characters have their neuroses, but they feel inherent rather than thrown in to advance the story or cover time.

    That said, I fully expect them to win the SAG as the family movie of the year. Barfing with Paddy.

  23. Eoin Daly

    I hope no one harrasses me but I adore this film and David O’Russell has hit a period where his films now feel more struchtured. The Fighter and this are examples of actors coming together and doing outstanding work. I’m reading the script for his next film and it’s coming off very good. I disagree with Sasha about many films and this is just one of those I will love.

  24. Jerry Grant

    God I love this movie. Always will.

    I have no problem with many people “not connecting” to it. There are plenty of beloved movies I don’t “connect to.” But I am dreading the haughty backlash that will arise if it wins big awards–“An objectively worse movie.” “Two words: Harvey brainwash.” Very condescending. Better to admit you just didn’t connect and didn’t get it. Happens all the time.

  25. Jerry Grant

    I agree with some of representDLV says, but not everything.

    I agree it is the only movie I recommend to everyone, and they all come back delighted and surprised and raving. I agree it is the movie I have seen multiple times and will be willing to watch again and again.

    But I don’t agree that it’s a) an easy movie, b) for non-thinkers, or c) that it’s only for the stage. If you don’t “get” the movie or don’t connect to it, it’s probably because you don’t detect anything unique about David O. Russell’s film language. He is inventing his own style of camera movement and editing, particularly over conversation. The environment on the screen always hovers between comfortable/loving and on the brink of disaster (“Flirting with Disaster” was this way too). Russell is not interested in scenes that we’ve seen before. The dance is, yes, the most conventional part—but also, there is something very self-conscious about having a “movie”-ish happy ending. Why is Hemingway tossed out the window? Why might this be important to tell a story this way? So many people I know like this movie so much because they felt like they never knew what genre they were in (the mood shifts are not unintentional), but were always enjoying it. Probably the main reason I enjoy it so much is that it is loving towards its characters. I like that nobody’s very bad, that there’s always a tenderness, and an ability to forgive. It is very much about mental health, and about the message “It gets better.”

  26. It would be great if you could figure out how to stop this from instantly playing every time I go to the main page. It’s really annoying.

  27. Elton Almeida

    guess my biggest problem with is the fact that it could very easily be done onstage – there’s nothing particularly “cinematic” about it

    That’s what I always say about Woody Allen’s films.

  28. Thanks for mentioning that, Mel. Didn’t realize. If I can’t find a way to fix it we’ll move the embed past the cut.

  29. ” I like that nobody’s very bad, that there’s always a tenderness, and an ability to forgive…”

    I agree with most of what Jerry Grant says apart from the above sentence.
    Cooper’s best friend is about 2 inches away from putting a bullet in his wife’s head. That’s what I like about the characters. They could fit right into Happiness for example, just change the narrative.
    It’s Happiness 2: Everybody Wins.

  30. …and every time I saw Dash Mihok, I almost died laughing, especially at the dance giving Cooper the squinty eye.

  31. Ávila Souza Oliveira

    ENSEMBLE CAST: SLPb <<<<< LES MISÉRABLES

  32. It is very much about mental health, and about the message “It gets better.”

    Do a little dance, make a little love*, YOU’RE CURED!

    Bitch please.

    *or not

  33. I finally saw it today. This thing is obviously winning. I can’t see how it won’t. Forget everything else about it. All you need to know is that (spoilers backwards)!seirc oriNeD treboR I mean seriously. Either he’s just going to win for that reason or the whole movie will. Anyway, to me, the movie I love that this reminded me of, although it’s not as good, was MOONSTRUCK. I didn’t like THE GOODBYE GIRL. I’m allergic to Richard Dreyfuss.

    Here’s the thing about The Weinstein Company. There’s campaigning and all of that crap but the fact is they put out great movies. My favorite films this year were from Warner Bros. but still. They’ve got the movies to match the moxie.

  34. !seirc oriNeD treboR I mean seriously. Either he’s just going to win for that reason or the whole movie will. Anyway, to me, the movie I love that this reminded me of, although it’s not as good, was MOONSTRUCK.

    Not Analyze This? Because the tears in Analyze This and Silver Linings look identically fake to me.

  35. @Ryan You watched ANALYZE THIS? lol I didn’t. Nah in that pic, his hair’s nowhere near as good as in SLP, but the tears could be fake. Maybe he borrowed some of Naomi Watts’ leftovers.

  36. heeeey, we can be aware of all kinds of horrors that we didn’t witness first-hand. The most I ever saw of Analyze This was skimming through that clip I found tonight by searching youtube for “DeNiro cries”

  37. Edkargir

    Nothing compares to Annie Hall one of my favorite films of all time. But slp is my number 3 film of the year and has a wonderful screenplay. As wonderfully as DDL is in Lincoln and he will win. I’d vote for Bradley Cooper he is in every scene and he showed incredible range and emotion . A very underrated film.

  38. The biggest thing I got from this picture is that the leads were different than we’ve seen them in other movies. And I was impressed, esp by Bradley Cooper’s range he showed in the first 3/4 of the film (when he showed up at the dance with the open collar I was back in The Hangover). In another year (sans DD-L), when he’s more respected or if there were weaker nominees, he’d win the Oscar. But the main characters were kind of annoying and the overall connection between them didn’t connect with me as it did in say, Strictly Ballroom.

  39. LillyB45

    I can’t get over the fact that Chris Tucker is in a Weinstein film. What’s next, Jeremy Irons in a Tyler Perry movie?

  40. LillyB45

    No, because he appears in movies like Rush Hour. C’mon, don’t pretend there’s no such thing as cinema snobbery, especially around here.

  41. The Japanese Viewer

    At least […] agree in part with one of the readers, representDLV, as well that SLP is safe enough to recommend to virtually anyone. Very enjoyable.

    I am going to buy it when it comes near me on DVD format for benefits of re-watching; hoping it contains a lot of engaging features including the (usually added) interviews.

    Goodbye Girl to some, Annie Hall to others. : )

  42. christiannnw

    In a perfect world, David O’Russell would have made a film like “Amour” and Michael Haneke would have made “Silver Linings Playbook”; this way, the inherent characteristics of their filmmaking would have helped cut through the nature of their film’s subject matter, thus creating visceral and unexpected films instead of what we’re dealing with now (quirky director’s quirky film, oh-so-serious director’s oh-so-serious film). I mean, am I the only one who wants to see Jean-Louis Trintignant in a trash bag lift a wheelchair ridden Emmanuelle Riva while she mumbles football stats at a dance competition? Or watch Bradley Cooper suffocate Jennifer Lawrence with a pillow because he forgot to take his meds since a pigeon stole them?

    Ugh, what could’ve been.

  43. “I don’t know if you saw what I said on another thread this morning, but if HW gets a hat trick, esp. with SLP, it will be proof that he’s the Lance Arnstrong of the Oscar biz.”–steve50

    Are you saying that HW is doping the Academy?

    ;)

  44. I’m late to this thread, but I just wanted to throw my opinion in the ring…I loved this film. I have mental illness(es) and the dreadful comedy of living with it rings true in SLP. I FELT these characters as I haven’t with other films this year (excepting Moonrise Kingdom). And I can not actually get over how GOOD Jennifer Lawrence is here.

    It’s an uneven film. There are scenes so contrived (e.g. the initial exposition-packed therapy session; the set-up of the parlay bet) that I would have been sure Russell was winking to a cinephile audience, if only he were less sincere and more…Tarantinoesque. I’ve always struggled to find a consistent tone in Russell’s films. God, I HATED The Fighter. But this film is genuinely funny, positive and never boring. It’s the actors that lift the entire enterprise to a far greater final product than it should have ever been and it deserves the nominations*.

    *Although, particularly as an Australian, I have no idea why Jacki Weaver was nominated. She didn’t do…anything.

  45. @KC. Totally agree with you re: Jacki Weaver. Her nomination is as mind-bogglingly random as Catherine Keener’s was for Capote. Neither did really ANYTHING in there movie other than stand there and look concerned. Coattail nominations to the max.

  46. steve50@telus.net

    “Are you saying that HW is doping the Academy?”

    No, I was comparing the ruthless “win at any cost” mentality that results in win after win, but you just may be on to something, Natasha. They can be pretty dopey sometimes without his help, though.

  47. Finally saw SLP. Enjoyable, with real dialogue and incredible acting–there are no flaws in this movie. Listen, I have a degree in history, but I thought Spielberg’s Lincoln was overlong and dragged a lot and wasn’t anywhere near a perfect movie. ZD30 and Les Miz, in their respective genres, did nothing to surprise me. If Silver Linings Playbook wins BP I would be neither shocked nor disappointed.

  48. rufussondheim

    If SLP wins, I’d be quite perplexed. I wouldn’t know where to rank it on my “Worst Oscar Winners” list. Should it go ahead of Braveheart? Forrest Gump? A Beautiful Mind? Gladiator? Eek, so many choices!

  49. Ryan Griffin

    You guys really gotta stop this video from auto-playing on the main page, driving men nuts every time I visit the site!

  50. Ryan Griffin

    It’s driving me nuts too, along with the men.

  51. I see this as comparable to “The King’s Speech” except SLP was a lot more self aware. Is it deserving of all the awards? Probably not, there were better made films this year. Is it entertaining if you can just lose yourself in it? Absolutely. Russell wasn’t trying to win an Oscar here I don’t think, he just wanted to make a great romantic comedy, which he absolutely did.

    Also, I disagree with those who think it’s a simply made film. Is it as complex as say, Lincoln, in terms of cinematography? Probably not. But the editing was absolutely perfect, and I liked how the camera just floats around with quick movements. Really captured the bipolarity of Cooper’s character.

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