Posted by: greercn | January 6, 2014

American Hustle

“Some of this actually happened” is the unlikely statement at the start of this crime movie. Very loosely based on the Abscam scandal in the US, the real-life sting resulted in elected officials going to jail.

“American Hustle” takes a conman (Christian Bale), his girlfriend (Amy Adams), his wife (Jennifer Lawrence), an FBI agent (Bradley Cooper) and a New Jersey Mayor (Jeremy Renner) and throws them into a twisting plot about building casinos in Atlantic City.

The less you know going in, the better. The script is by Eric Singer and David O Russell, who also directs. Russell brings the same crisp mix of sparkling wisecrack dialogue and fast action that made “Silver Linings Playbook” such a joy to watch.

A late 1970s feel is well observed in costumes, bad facial hair and sets.The absolutely-packed Stratford East Picturehouse stayed attentive through a whopping 138 minutes that felt a bit long to me.

Louis C.K., Michael Pena, Alessandro Nivola, Anthony Zerbe and Elisabeth Rohm shine out in smaller roles. There is an enormous cast and it’s hard to follow who is doing what in a few scenes.

But the big name stars – and Rohm as as the Mayor’s wife – lift this to a very high level.

It’s a terrific story that’s superbly acted and wonderfully scripted. Do go see it. It’s worth most of the hype.



  1. Nice review Greer. Some of it works, and some of it doesn’t. But for the most part, as a whole, this movie is a blast to watch, especially due to the fact that everybody involved seems to be having the times of their lives.

  2. Thank you! I think that’s key to how much fun it is to watch. The music is such fun too. It makes me want to rush out and buy the soundtrack.

  3. I really want to see this film but I think that’s mostly because of my undying devotion to J-Law. Very interested to see her and Bradley Cooper acting alongside each other again in a role that’s about as far from Silver Linings Playbook as you can possibly get!

    • Great to see your comment, Amy. She is absolutely amazing in this role which is unlike anything else you have seen her in. It really shows her versatility.

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