TIFF Review Roundup: ‘Silver Linings Playbook,’ ‘Iceman,’ ‘Company You Keep’


In today’s review from the Toronto International Film Festival, you can read all about the role that Jennifer Lawrence is already getting Oscar buzz for and see what kind of investigative journalist Shia LaBeouf is.

“The Company You Keep”
Grade: C

The major problem of “The Company You Keep” is the moral fiber of the piece. Making a film about an issue as dicey as the Weather Underground is, on the face of it, courageous, but “The Company You Keep” routinely avoids all judgments. Was the Weather Underground a necessary political instrument that actually saved lives by acting out in a violent manner? Or were they the same as terrorists the whole world round, their original intent severely corrupted by their deeds? Instead of getting into that, the film is much more comfortable throwing its hands in the air and saying, “Quick, look over there!” -Laremy Legel

“Thanks for Sharing”
Grade: D+

Sadly, “Thanks for Sharing” can’t quite find its footing as either a drama or a comedy, and near the end it’s actively sliding off the rails. Some of the problem is a misplaced narrative arc, some of it involves huge tonal issues, but a healthy portion or two revolves around “Thanks for Sharing” not knowing precisely what it is trying to say. Which, given it’s a film all about communication, is a pretty debilitating flaw to trot out as entertainment. –LL

“The Iceman”
Grade: C-

For when a film doesn’t teach, doesn’t offer hope and presents a bleak vision of humanity coupled with a ham-fisted rationale for the darkness, well, your best bet is to turn your back on that sort of effort. It’s eminently clear that “The Iceman” had little regard for humanity… and it’s just as clear we should have about the same level of interest in his story. –LL

“Silver Linings Playbook”
Grade: A

Life is dance, life is a game and “Silver Linings Playbook” sweeps both apt metaphors up into its broad cowl and presents them back to you, smirk firmly affixed. It’s a special film, this one, the sort we wait for all year, the kind that reaffirms our belief in talented people working together toward an artistic goal. With great pacing, a great sense of the moment and some of the most entertaining one-liners you’ll find this side of a Coen brothers’ film, there’s much to like about “Silver Linings Playbook.”