Silver Lings Playbook Mental Health

Usually you hear or see that a film based off a book is not executed well, the film usually doesn’t do the book its justice. I think there are many factors for this, directors and authors probably have different visions or different directions of where they want their viewers/readers to go. Sometimes it might even be a challenge to bring certain aspects of the book to life. For instance, difficult topics such as: mental illness or sexual abuse, can be difficult to watch. So film makers sometimes change things up to get a different vibe in the film. This can go either way: great or horrible. In the film, Silver Linings Playbook, the changes made, surprisingly, make the film better than the book; don’t get me wrong, I think they are both great, I just feel they tell a different story.

In the book, Pat’s mentality is that he wanted to be kind not right. In the film however, Pat’s motto was Excelsior: if you work hard and do everything right, and stay positive, you have a shot at a silver lining. So in the book he is working on his kindness and how he treats others vs in the film he is willing to do whatever it takes to get his life back where it used to be and have a happily ever after. Both believed that if they worked really hard they would reach their silver lining (get his wife back). I think this is a major difference, it changes the character completely.

Another major difference is that in the book, Pat is released from a mental hospital into his mother’s custody after four years.And he doesn’t remember anything that happened. Like that he almost killed the man he found cheating with his wife and that his wife divorced him while he was in the institute. He doesn’t know he’s been there for years and his wife had divorced him when he was checked in. In the film, he released from the hospital only eight months after and he remembers everything!

The novel and the book are both great, essentially they both deliver the idea that if you work hard and you stay positive you have a shot at a silver lining, and that people are not their mental illness and just maybe they understand something we don’t. I just feel that the way the film brought the characters and the story to life is a lot better than the book. Especially the love story with Tiffany Maxwell.