After a violent outburst put down to his bipolar disorder, thirtysomething Pat Solitano (Bradley Cooper) was committed for eight months of psychiatric treatment. Now released into the care of his parents Pat Sr (Robert De Niro) and Delores (Jacki Weaver), Pat's prime concern is winning back his wife Nikki (Brea Bee), despite the fact she has filed a restraining order.
Over dinner with friends (John Ortiz and Julia Stiles), Pat strikes up a dysfunctional bond with Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence) - a troubled young woman who has recently lost both her husband and her job. Soon, Tiffany needs a favour, and with Pat still desperate to prove he has turned his life around, she offers him a mutually-beneficial deal that could give him a precious second chance with Nikki.
David O. Russell follows up The Fighter with another wellcrafted gem that won a Best Leading Actress Oscar for Lawrence and a BAFTA for Best Adapted Screenplay. Based on the novel by Matthew Quick, Silver Linings Playbook provides its stars with plum roles, which Cooper and particularly Lawrence grasp with both hands. De Niro brings the weight of his movie legend status to the part of Pat's bookmaker dad, while Animal Kingdom's Weaver plays a less menacing matriarch this time out.
Meanwhile, 15 years since he starred in anything without the words Rush Hour in the title, Chris Tucker has won fans for his surprisingly deft turn as Pat's wild-card institution buddy Danny.
Running the gamut of emotions from heartbreak to triumph, Russell's latest is a real crowd-pleaser filled with gorgeous moments and crackling chemistry.