Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Best Leading Actress 2012: Jennifer Lawrence - Silver Linings Playbook

Shooting romantic comedies is a very dangerous thing to do. I personally split them into three categories:
1) bad or annoying ones, which have nothing new or interesting to offer (The Mirror Has Two Faces),
2) the ones with full of cliché, but so adorable, you can't resist them (Pretty Woman),
3) the original ones, with a really intelligent and fleshly plot (Juno).
Fortunately, Silver Linings Playbook belongs to the third category.
Jennifer Lawrence's performance in Silver Linings Playbook is very self-confident. Lawrence chose this way of portraying (which that is, I'm going to write about later) and we just have to reconcile that.
Lawrence's character (Tiffany) is actually more of a supporting. The focus of the film's attention is Bradley Cooper's character Pat, which suffers from bipolar disorder. The directing of Silver Linings Playbook is really great, because it allows us watch the film just like Pat see the world. The camera and the editing are really disordered and so on.
The character of Tiffany is a person you would probably had a hard time getting along with. Jennifer Lawrence hasn't decided to play her as a believable person. Many of her scenes are overacted and over the top (especially the scene in the restaurant). Her portrayal is completely unnatural and even unbelievable. But I don't think it's a thing we can blame her for. I had a feeling she completely knew, what she was doing. I think this way of portraying has its reason. We have a very mixed feelings from this performance. If her character was a real person, I think a person with a bipolar disorder would be very disturbed and disorganized from her presence. I think, Lawrence did this non-complexity on purpose. She wanted the audience to feel this way. And she succeeded.
It's a hard thing to choose her best scene. It may be the scene of a dinner at the beginning, or some of her later scenes. As the film goes on, her character becomes more and more likable, therefore I think she has the biggest chance to win an Oscar. It is (or will be) an iconic performance, that will be loved by many, just like Dianne Keaton's Annie Hall. It is also technically not very good performance, but we cannot blame the actress for choosing this way (though I did it with Dianne). Lawrence was completely aware of what she was doing and this is probably the best way this character could be played. Therefore I really won't be angry or sad, if she wins...

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