The Oscars 2013 Watchalong is going quite well, but I've not been telling you about what I've been watching. So with 27 days until the Oscars ceremony on February 24th, I'd better get some posts done. Rest assured, if you only like reading my blog for the sewing stuff or the family stuff there WILL be those sort of posts in between all the movie review posts, but it will all be over in 27 days anyway, so stick with me ;)
Aaaanyway......this morning I went to see Silver Linings Playbook. No, I didn't know what a playbook is either....I gather its the rules to do with American Football from the poster, but don't worry, I honestly know next-to-nothing about American Football and you don't need to know this stuff to understand the movie. It's a sub-plot that you don't have to understand because you can sense from the emotions displayed whether teams are winning or losing etc. The main character isn't even an American football player, which the clips I'd seen before the movie led me to believe he was, he's a history teacher who just wears American football shirts a lot. Go figure (as my daughter would say).
So don't be put off, GO SEE IT. Or see it when it comes out on dvd. Here's the trailer:
It's good. Flawed, but good.
It meets my criteria for a movie being a worthy best picture nomination - it evoked an emotional response and kept me thinking about it once I'd walked out of the cinema. Believe me, there are other Oscar nominated movies that have bored me silly, this isn't one of them.
So why do I think it's flawed?
Well, it's a bit disjointed. It does have a few moments where you wonder how much longer the movie will be, before it picks up again. And there are few things that just didn't sit right.....the movie doesn't quite find it's style....it starts off with a sort of documentary realism that The Fighter had, especially with the exchanges about betting and American football between Robert De Niro and Paul Herman as Randy, but then there are odd moments that seem out of place and comedic similar to the magic realism of movies like Strictly Ballroom or Muriel's Wedding. It's a rom-com yes, but there's a lot of other things happening within the movie that don't seem to gel, some moments that seem really dark, some rather large plot holes.....it felt sometimes like scenes had been cut but that the surrounding scenes hadn't been updated to deal with the plot changes.
And the mental health thing.....hmmm. It's ooookaaayish. It's not devisive, it's not overwhelming, it's not unconvincing. As you probably know if you've been reading this blog for a while, I have cyclothymic disorder, the lowest form of bipolar. I managed to swing in just below a bipolar II diagnosis because my depressive lows far outweigh the regularity of my hypers, and I rarely reach the hyper mania highs. I've only been delusional a few times in my life, though I acknowledge (and have been told) that with my hypers I often have an unrealistic view of reality. Anyway, I know a bit about bipolar and mental health issues, and they were adequately portrayed in the movie. I've seen some reviews criticising the fact that Bradley Cooper's character Pat seems more manic or possibly having Aspergers than bipolar because we don't see him depressed, but I think this an unfair reading. Certainly, he gets depressed, seen in his lashing out at the world (ask my family about the number of times we've had to replace crockery in the past, though since I've had CBT/Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and can spot my signs and triggers and indeed do have strategies to deal with these (though they don't always work) I'm far better than I used to be, and can usually find my way back to a plateau between my extremes far quicker than I used to. And as for his bluntness and inadequate social skills being more akin to Aspergers....well, yes, I've known people with the condition as friends and during my time working in the voluntary sector, so I know what is meant, but trust me, or ask my friends, family, doctors, mental health care support teams, psychotherapists and psychiatrist about my bluntness, inability to often see anything but black or white in situations, and how hurtful I can be when ill....it all struck painful chords with me.
The movie is up for the following Oscars:
- Best Picture (not bad, but I think there are better ones up against it)
- Actor - Bradley Cooper (he was ok, his acting was fine but possibly the writing for his character won't win him best actor on Feb 24th)
- Actress - Jennifer Lawrence (excellent as per usual, though I thought she was far more worthy of her nomination 2 years ago for Winter's Bone which she really was outstanding in. I'm putting her in my favourites' pile though for now until I've seen more of the nominated movies)
- Supporting Actor - Robert De Niro (excellent, he's gone straight on my favourites' pile - he was doing proper acting again, not the quirky, twitching, pantomime of recent years in 'comedies'....you could feel the depth of the character....could be a winner.....ask me again on Feb 23rd)
- Supporting Actress - Jacki Weaver (good, solid, but I'm not sure the script gave her enough scope to beat off Anne Hathaway in Les Mis)
- Directing (hmmm, flawed and gaping for the reasons given above, so not going on my favourites' pile)
- Adapted Screenplay (as above, it honestly felt to me like scenes had been cut and the pieces not adequately taped back together)
- Film Editing (I'll have to think about this one when I've seen the other nominated movies).
Would I recommend it to others to watch? Yes, especially for one something towards the end, which I won't spoil, but makes the whole movie worthwhile.
Would I watch it again? Yes
Score for movie out of 10? 8
Last thought: I need to make crabby snacks and homemades ready for the Oscar Ceremony.....or possibly to make the Superbowl (this weekend) worth watching....nope, I still don't get American Football, but for me my interest in the season starts somewhere in the 4th quarter on Superbowl Sunday, it's tradition.
Want a list of all 53 movies you need to watch to see everything with an Oscar nomination in 2013? Check out my printable list here.