As we close out 21 Days of Bradley Cooper, I am so happy that Silver Linings Playbook won SOMETHING last night at the Oscars, and I’m pretty crazy about Jennifer Lawrence, even without watching these videos, in which she gushes over and then is kind of annoyed by Jack Nicholson “Is he back? I need a rear view mirror.” And also expresses actual authentic reactions to media-ishy questions, post-Win.
I loved Winter’s Bone, too. And in Silver Linings Playbook, her character Tiffany had my favorite line from the movie:
“I was a slut. There will always be a part of me that is dirty and sloppy, but I like that, just like all the other parts of myself. I can forgive. Can you say the same for yourself, fucker? Can you forgive? Are you capable of that?”
To me this is one of the signature lines of the movie, not just because of the brashness and crassness, but because it’s about integration, moving beyond shame, and redeeming your own self, from the inside out. Jennifer Lawrence’s Tiffany teaches Bradley Cooper’s Pat how to do that.
Which reminds me, this was never 21 Days of Jennifer Lawrence (maybe that’s next! probably not). It was 21 Days of Bradley Cooper.
He didn’t win. It is entirely possible that only his mother thought he really had a chance to. As much as I’ve enjoyed my little foray into Bradley Cooperstown, I have to admit that I agree with the “brutally honest director” who did a think-aloud of his Oscar ballot, who said, “For Bradley Cooper, the nomination is his award.”
One wonders about direction after the Oscars–I think if Mr. Cooper had won, people would have remembered him as the guy who stole it from Abe Lincoln, not as the guy who took huge strides in the role of Pat Solitano.
I was hopeful Silver Linings Playbook would win more, though–the movie hit me at just the right time, and I really, really wanted the Academy to give more love to a smart comedy with a happy ending.
(I’m sure I should want to see Amour. I do not want to.)
The “brutally honest director” said this about David O. Russell’s chances for Best Director, that “it took David O. Russell to figure out that Bradley Cooper is a great actor,” and Nate Silver had the movie trending a little for Best Picture, so I was hopeful.
Nonetheless, the Oscars are over, and I find that I still have not answered my friend Jen’s question, “So there is a movie in which Bradley Cooper’s character is not a psychopath?”
His character, Pat, in Silver Linings Playbook, begins the movie figuring out how to manage his bipolar disorder. So, not a psychopath. Previously delusional and violent, but no, not a psychopath. And in the movie, appealingly upbeat, hopeful, earnest, vulnerable, and relentless.
There is corroboration for the psychopath idea, though, here: “The Creepiness of Bradley Cooper,” in which the author says she sees “something of the psychopath about him,” but is ultimately not troubled by it: “Dark times call for dark celebrities, and these times are dark.”
That article featured his turn in Limitless, which I see as essentially an ambivalent fable about Adderall.
All my Google searches and alerts had not turned up that article, though–it was referenced in this one in the New Republic Article, “Bradley Cooper: Beefcake Thespian How the “Silver Linings Playbook” star became a serious actor.”
This article is pretty heavy on the snark, emphasizing Mr. Cooper’s tendency to play characters you wouldn’t necessarily trust. Or like.
And it seems to have multiple axes it wants to grind. Curious.
My favorite Bradley Cooper article is this one from Esquire, “Dinner with Bradley,” post-Limitless, pre-Silver Linings Playbook, which likens him to a young Senatorial Jack Kennedy. It’s smart writing, and seems to give Mr. Cooper credit for some of the same things the New Republic article criticizes him for (pushing himself to be serious, being ambitious). It does this thing where I wondered if the author was trying to imply SOMETHING HAPPENED, (“Eleven o’clock on a Saturday morning and Bradley Cooper is sleeping. Russell Crowe is Robin Hood on the television and there has been another day of Limitless publicity in between and Cooper is tired. Five days earlier, Entertainment Weekly declared that ‘A Serious Movie Star Is Born.’ He is on his side and unshaven and not snoring and smiling.”) but is otherwise pretty interesting.
I’m sort of exhibit A of how nominations can bolster a movie–it definitely caught my attention because of the Oscar talk, and I’m pretty sure that’s why it showed at Sundance (and when I go see a movie, I typically would HOPE it would be showing at Sundance).
It’s been a fun ride for me. But Bradley Cooper had WAY more fun as evidenced in this Happy Hugger slideshow.
Full disclosure: in regards to my plan three weeks ago in which I imagined myself posting something about Bradley Cooper every day until the Oscars. That didn’t happen because
1. I got bored.
2. I got busy.
3. My calculated and cynical attempt to bolster blog traffic by blogging about a hot commodity was not successful. I think I’m still getting all those David Bowie hits because there weren’t that many people blogging about his new single. Whereas there are approximately (number approaching infinity) people blogging about Bradley Cooper.
One of my blogs, though, wondered about all Harvey Weinstein’s machinations on behalf of Silver Linings Playbook, thus the title.
(photo by wrestlingentropy on flickr, Creative Commons)