Dysfunction lies at the heart of every film made by David O. Russell – be it geo-political (Three Kings), literally existential (I Heart Huckabees) or family-oriented (The Fighter) – and his new movie, The Silver Linings Playbook, is no exception. Today, we have a trailer for the latest offering from Russell, which stars Bradley Cooper (The Hangover) and Oscar-nominee Jennifer Lawrence (Hunger Games) as a pair who bond over their shared mental issues.
Silver Linings Playbook appears to offer a similar mix of uncomfortable humor and raw emotional drama that has been constant throughout Russell’s work to date (in a good way). Likewise, Cooper and Lawrence look to dive head-first into their roles as two very damaged, but ultimately empathetic (and even likable) people.
The trailer for Silver Linings Playbook does leave out certain darkly humorous aspects of the film, which is based on Matthew Quick’s novel (adapted by Russell). For example: Cooper’s character is a former teacher who makes an effort to win back his ex-wife (Brea Bree), as he’s under the delusion that he’s only been in a mental institution for a matter of months – when, in reality, several years have passed.
Similarly, the cutesy aspects of the relationship between Cooper and Lawrence are played up here; it creates the impression that their characters are more like kids in adult bodies, experiencing real love for the first time. Based on Russell’s previous work, though, their relationship might not be quite so innocent in the actual movie (admittedly, that just speculation).
Lawrence and Cooper in ‘The Silver Linings Playbook’
Cooper and Lawrence are surrounded by solid supporting talent in Silver Linings Playbook, including, Robert De Niro, Jacki Weaver (Animal Kingdom), and Chris Tucker, who’s been MIA on the big screen for the past five years (since Rush Hour 3). It’ll be especially interesting to see what the dynamic between Cooper and De Niro is like, given that they actually had pretty good screen chemistry (in this writer’s opinion) as allies-turned-enemies in Limitless.
Russell’s film is one of two upcoming projects that feature Cooper and Lawrence as a couple, alongside Serena. The latter is a more serious period drama that showcases Lawrence’s acting prowess, more than Cooper’s; that should make for an intriguing complimentary piece to the duo’s work in Silver Linings Playbook.
The Silver Linings Playbook opens in U.S. theaters on November 21st, 2012.