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Those who persevere will eventually enjoy 'Joy'

Jennifer Lawrence in JOY. (Fox 2000 Pictures)

Joy
3.5 out of 5 Stars
Director:
David O. Russell
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Bradley Cooper
Genre: Biography, Comedy, Drama
Rated: PG-13 for brief strong language
Recommended To: Fans of nontraditional inspirational stories.

Synopsis: The unusual success story of Joy Mangano (Jennifer Lawrence), the single mother who invented the Miracle Mop and became a QVC sensation.

Review: Following the critical success of "Silver Linings Playbook" and "American Hustle," director David O. Russell reteams with Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper for a movie about the woman who invented the Miracle Mop. While some may be tired of seeing the pairing of Lawrence and Cooper ("Serena" certainly showed signs of fatigue), "Joy" doesn't suffer because of the familiarity of the cast. In fact Lawrence is nearly as good as she's ever been as she rises to the occasion (as she always seems to) and gives a fantastic performance as a woman who believed in herself when no one else was willing to.

"Joy" is a classic American Dream story filled with opportunistic con artists, corrupt businessmen, jealous siblings, questionable parenting and a determined woman stubborn enough to rise above it all. It's inspirational once you get beyond the muck, which isn't easy to do because Russell's script is filled with unlikable characters that serve as roadblocks to Joy as she tries to make something out of her life.

"Joy" isn't quite good enough to be an Oscar contender, but it's still a quality film that deserves to be seen (and since it is rated PG-13 you really have no excuse not to see it).

Follow Ryan on Twitter for entertainment and movie news: @ryanMpainter


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