Mental health is a delicate and serious subject that requires a gentle touch when tackling it, especially in a movie.
Silver Linings Playbook explores the impact bipolar disorder and depression have on the lives of two young people - Pat (Bradley Cooper) and Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence) - in a realistic and compassionate way.
Pat has just finished a stint in a psychiatric hospital and returns to live with his parents - Pat snr (Robert de Niro) and Dolores (Jacki Weaver) - in the hope of rebuilding his life.
Pat still harbours hopes of reuniting with his estranged wife Nicki.
But when he meets Tiffany, it is like he has found his female equivalent.
Having just come through the traumatic death of her policeman husband, Tiffany is doing the best she can but not in a very healthy way.
These two quirky individuals make a fascinating couple as they use humour to show how their illness affects their perception of life.
They begin dancing together and agree to perform in a local competition.
But the spectre of Nicki hangs over their relationship and threatens any long-term future.
Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence display the full range of their acting abilities.
From rage to humour, from compassion to blunt dismissal, they truly get into the characters and the traits that come with mental illness.
This is a wonderful tale of two people who are trying to find a way forward in life.
Silver Linings Playbook
(M) Roadshow Entertainment
Rating: 4 / 5