Silver Linings Playbook (Spoiler Alert)
My best friend asked me to watch this movie to see what I thought of how it portrayed mental illness. MANanING maNIA also reviewed the movie which inspired to me check out this movie even more since he had a positive experience with it than my best friend did.
The movie in question is Silver Linings Playbook. “After a stint in a mental institution, former teacher Pat Solitano moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a mysterious girl with problems of her own.” (IMDb)
My bestie felt that this movie was not talking mental illness seriously. As many of my followers know (because we are awesomely “crazy”) mental illness portrayal in movies is usually an upsetting experience. Mental illness is seen as a joke, seen as shameful, as dangerous and as the only interesting part of our lives. If there is a character in a movie who has a mental illness the movie is usually ALWAYS about that character and their illness. We all know, from personal experience, that there is more in our lives than our illness.
I really liked Silver Linings Playbook. Do I think it deserved Golden Globe recognition? No, but what do I know about those things? Not much.
Anyways, I have two complaints about this movie and then I’ll tell you what I liked about it.
1. Product placement. I can get over the fact that the two main characters, Pat and Tiffany, say actual names of psychiatric medication but when I saw a pill in Pat’s hand that clearly said “Seroquel” I became angry that AstraZeneca got such great advertising for their product. How many people will now want to go on Seroquel because they saw it in a movie? Ugh. You can’t say that wasn’t done on purpose because they could have easily given a pill that didn’t say the brand name on it!
2. Unrealistic drug effects. This is most likely nit picky but as someone who takes Seroquel and has been on 1 other antipsychotic, what are the odds that Pat could take a Seroquel in the morning and then go for a jog and carry on with the rest of his day? I know that a drug can effect me differently than it can effect you but antipsychotics are known for sedation and if they are not sedating you then you probably need to switch drugs completely because that’s not the point of them. Antipsychotics are usually taken at night. When I take my dose of 12.5mg in the morning, oh my goodness, I’m not jogging, I’m sleeping (which is why I can’t take it in the morning). This just ties into my overall annoyance that psychiatric medication effects are usually incorrect in movies. This causes people to think that, for example, antidepressants are literal “happy pills” that make you smile and bounce off the walls. This complicates things because that is not what happens and I would hate for people to think something is wrong with them because of how a movie portrayed a drug inaccurately.
Overall, I liked this movie and would recommend it! I did feel Tiffany’s character was more authentic than Pat but by the end of the movie I really liked Pat.
My bestie feels that society is not ready for a comedy on mental illness but I feel now is the perfect time! There will probably never be a right time so might as well do it now. Also if mental illness can only ever be a drama that would continue to give off the wrong impression about our lives. My life is a drama but it’s also a comedy. I love laughing and joking and my life is full of things that make me happy! A lot of what is funny about this movie is probably only funny to those with mental health issues. For example: the neighbour kid who pops up asking to interview him about mental illness for his high school paper :p
Another scene that made me laugh was when Pat and Tiffany were comparing meds over dinner. How many of us have done that? I know have! There is nothing better than bonding over shared medication experiences!
The scenes that made me realize that this movie was looking at more than mental illness was when Pat and Tiffany were learning choreography for the dance competition Tiffany and Pat were entering in exchange for Tiffany giving Pat’s wife a letter from him. This had nothing to do with mental illness and everything about having a good time, and helping a friend (even if it is in exchange for something). It was very cute to watch them dance in the competition.
There is more to this movie then mental illness and I could see my life in this movie. I can go on a rampage, like Pat, but then calm down and go do something with my friends and family. WOW, just like everyone else!
Posted on January 16, 2013, in Also Important!, Articles/Video/Campaigns/Photos and tagged friends, funny, life, love, medication, mental health, mental illness, realism, Silver Linings Playbook. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.