Silver Linings Playbook (PG) * * * * *

Homeward Bound!

Issues galore confront a man returning to the civilized world in Silver Linings Playbook.

Smart and sophisticated, this dazzling drama from Alliance Films boasts Academy Award winning performances from least expected areas. Get in on all the fun at Empire Studio 12, Colossus and Cineplex Odeon Screens across B.C.

Mental illness takes many forms. Often it’s hard to adapt” to the outside world. This is the ultimate dilemma faced by Pat. In a total switch from his reckless “The Hangover” days handsome Bradley Cooper leaves the laughs behind as he portrays a troubled man trying to work things out. Life at home is trying too thanks to an overprotective mom Dolores and sports obsessed dad Pat Sr. Both Jacki Weaver and Robert De Niro are delightful parents with the latter leaving behind his Meet The Patents hijinks.

Among Pat’s multitude of issues concerning adjusting to civilian life are his obsessions. Chief among these hang-ups is a woman from his past. When a new woman named Tiffany crosses his path things become even more eventful for this “challenged “man. Loneliness knows no bounds and fresh from her triumphant work on The Hunger Games Jennifer Lawrence stands tall and truly steals this show outright. Expect both Cooper and Lawrence to win accolades at next year’s Oscar ceremonies. That’s how good their performances are.

Funny at times, sad at others, Silver Linings Playbook is an emotional rollercoaster with triumphant performances throughout it’s 122 minute course. Even funnyman Chris Tucker leaves his buffoonery behind as a friend to Pat. Add on accomplished work from Julia Stiles and a wonderful scrpt form director David O.Russell and you truly have an insightful look at mental illness, addiction, romance and infatuation all rolled into one.

Easily on of the year’s best films, Silver Linings Playbook is heartfelt and inspirational and dynamic dramatic fare that deserves to be seen.