2012 was definitely a milestone year for Bradley Cooper. The star perhaps best known for the smash comedy “The Hangover” was an Oscar nominee for his dramatic work in “Silver Linings Playbook,” currently still in theatres. But even before that breakout film, he showed us more of what he was made of in “The Words.” This thoughtful drama about hopes and dreams and the lengths we go to achieve them is now a DVD release available at the Roanoke Valley Public Library.
Struggling writer Rory Jansen (Cooper) believes there is greatness within him. That potential for greatness is validated by a publisher who feels Rory has written a dynamite book. Unfortunately, it’s not deemed the type of book that will sell from an unknown,first-time author. This backhanded compliment sends Rory to a new state of low until he unexpectedly finds a lost manuscript beyond anything he could ever hope to write. He claims the book as his own and enjoys success until an encounter in a park brings him face to face with his fraud.
But “The Words” stops short a being a full blown examination of living a lie. It’s a beautifully multilayered story with a hint of mystery-thriller that celebrates the art of fiction. Dennis Quaid solidly bookends the movie as Clay Hammond, the author of a book telling Rory’s story. Jeremy Irons, as the old man Rory encounters, gives an outstanding honest and sympathetic performance that has us hanging on his every word. And then there are the heartbreaking Ben Barnes and Nora Arnezeder as the tragic young couple depicted in the lost manuscript. Each storyline is equally engaging and as a collective whole the movie offers a worthwhile experience for movie goers of all interests.