Book vs. Film: Silver Linings Playbook

The Silver Linings Playbook, by Matthew Quick • Published by Farrar, Straus, and Giroux • ★★★★ • Goodreads

THE BOOK

I surprisingly enjoyed this book. I mean, I didn't dive into it with much expectations but then I also expected something heavy, which it actually wasn't. The Silver Linings Playbook is actually really easy to get into, despite it dealing with psychological problems of two individuals. It also has a very careful tone to it, which makes me feel as though I'm taking ginger steps through the book, and when I finally made it to the end, it was as if I had unloaded a burden off my shoulder. Because by then, Pat had found someone he could rely on, as did Tiffany.

I loved all the relationships in this book so hard. The way Pat's mom tries so hard to hold up the family, the way she later gave up because Pat's dad wouldn't try, the way his dad later tried, the way Jake is so protective of Pat, and just, everything. Pat's continuous struggle to accept reality and fix his temper. Tiffany's struggle between helping Pat and lying to him. I think that these relationships are why the novel is called Silver Linings. The result is beautiful but you have to have dark clouds to get a silver lining.

The book also spoiled a lot of classics' endings for me, but having book amnesia, I doubt I have a problem reading those books. Plus the fact that I can hardly retain any classics in my head too, so this wasn't a big deal for me!

I also read on GR that this is an adult version of Perks of Being A Wallflower, so maybe it's high time I check that out!

Silver Linings Playbook • Released in 2012 • Screenplay by David O. Russell • IMDB

THE FILM 

Complete confession here: I read the book so that I can watch the film (obviously enjoyed the book). I want to watch the film purely because of a superficial reason which is Jennifer Lawrence. But can you blame me? Really? It's J. Law! 

Moving on, I also enjoyed the movie, but much less than the book. We can't really see Pat's struggle to maintain himself visually. The one time that the struggle was obvious was when he left the diner with Tiffany. While the way Pat fixes his relationships with people around him differs in the movie from the book, it is still interesting to see how things unfolded. But I think the movie placed its focus on romance a little more than the healing process of two broken people. 

The one thing I felt conflicted with the film was the appearance of a real Nikki in front of Pat and Tiffany. It was obviously a key scene because it made Pat realised he wasn't in love with his ex-wife anymore, and her appearance was also a trigger for Tiffany, and a turning point for Pat and Tiffany's relationship. But I also felt (in my gut) that her appearance was nothing short of wrong. I wished the screenplay could go in another way of the book, instead of writing in Nikki's appearance at the dance.

It is still a good movie though! It kept most of the things the book was trying to tell, like the importance of having support for someone who's recovering, even if it was told in a different way for certain aspects. I liked the book counterpart of Pat's family, friends, and doctor more, but it doesn't mean the movie versions are mediocre. :)

Comments

  1. Ooh so, confession. I've seen the movie but haven't read the book. And I really enjoyed it. It's one of those times where you see the movie first and then it makes you want to read the book, but then you don't know if you'll like it because even though you know the books are always better you don't like going into books knowing what's going to happen kind of thing. Or is that just me? You sort of make me want to read it though since you liked the book even better. A bookish life is so hard! :P

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  2. I think you can definitely still enjoy the book even if you've watched the movie. The relationships develop differently from the beginning! Plus I think because you can read Pat's inner monologue in the book, while for the film, you had to guess from his face or from conversations around them. I just feel that this story can be enjoyed both ways, without reading or watching the other counterpart of it. :D

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  3. I'm the same as Asti - I've seen the movie but haven't read the book. That's often how I do movie adaptation though because I usually end up enjoying the book afterwards anyways. That way I enjoy both of them instead of being disappointed by the movie :P

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  4. I haven't read the book, but I did watch the movie almost solely for J Law so I can relate to that! :) It was a fun and thoughtful movie - I really enjoyed it, but I didn't really feel the need to read the book. But now your review has made me curious! I'm glad at least that the old adage that the book is better than the movie held up for this though - it's the way it should be. :D

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  5. I always wondered what this was about because J Law is in it, but now that I've read your review, it clears it up. I like how it's about two broken people but the movie seems to have changed quite a lot from the original book. Most importantly at least the heart of novel is there though. Lovely reviews Tory!

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