The Oscar season is coming up and finally we will be able to watch the films that have the Academy Award Jury salivating! The Jury loves historical films, period dramas, high budget fantasies and throws in some odd-ball comedies having American Families with serious problems. I caught up with the Period Con Drama – American Hustle this week and it is tailor made for the awards.
The Plot: David O Russell is a shrewd director with a seriously good filmography. His last 3 films “The Fighter”, “Silver Lining Playbook” and now “American Hustle” have got the juries of several awards super excited. Like in “The Fighter” where Christian Bale had lost oodles of weight, he has again transformed himself into a bald, fat con man for American Hustle. He and his seductive partner, Amy Adams, start conning people off their money. That is until an FBI agent (Bradley Cooper) forces them to help him net some big fish – politicians or Mafia guys. And so begins a dangerous game of deception and double crossing. All seems to be going smoothly until the unpredictable and explosively catty wife of Bale, played by Jennifer Lawrence, messes things up badly!
The Pluses: American Hustle is powered by its 4 leads. Bale, Adams, Cooper and Lawrence are perfectly cast and play their characters brilliantly. Bale embodies the fat con man with aplomb and it’s hard to believe that he was the Dark Knight a year ago! Amy Adams, for once, gets a role that helps her display her enormous talent. Though I still think her best performance was in “Miss Pettigrew Lives a Day”. Bradley Cooper is competent and Lawrence just proves once again what a live-wire she is on screen. Also, Russell provides enough entertainment to keep you interested. Overall, the old school look and style really elevates the feel.
The Popcorn Worthiness: Is it a mind blowing film? Of course not. The story is decent. What really stands out is the production design and the amazing characterization. But unlike other con films this doesn't have any thrill. It’s more of a drama than a con movie. After a while it does get a little overbearing, but Lawrence wakes you up with her bratty-catty act! It’s no surprise that American Hustle is lapping up Award Nominations for its cast members. It seems designed for the awards. It’s as if Russell was gunning.. err…conning for the Awards!
Rating: 6.5/10 – Watch it if you like the cast, but don’t expect to be amazed!
Review by - Virinder Villkhoo
A hopeless FILMantic, a sit-down comic, a cereal killer, chicken lover, who Copys for a living, really!
Read his MoViews @ http://www.flicksonic.com