2.06.2014

American Hustle REVIEW

We’re in the middle of Award Season, which is brutally torn apart by the Sochi Winter Games, and just today I went to see one of its biggest players; David O'Russell's American Hustle. It got 10 Oscar nominations and a handful of awards, including three Golden Globes and the top prize at the SAG Awards. Expectations were high as you can imagine.


To avoid spoilers, stop reading here.

American Hustle is loosely based on the story of the Abscam undercover operation in the late seventies. Two con artists (Amy Adams and Christian Bale) are forced to take part in this operation by an FBI agent (Bradley Cooper). A series of events follows.

In part, American Hustle lived up to its expectations. Especially the Rosalyn Rosenfeld (Jennifer Lawrence) part. You probably have heard and read it numerous times before, but Jennifer Lawrence steals every single scene she’s in. Being a rather unstable mother-of-one, who’s in desperate need of a little love and warmth in her life, she is the one I ended up caring most about. Her rather small part has this honesty and the right amount of craziness, that makes you like her. And of course Lawrence knows to deliver. I wouldn’t mind at all if Lupita Nyong’o takes home the best supporting actress Academy Award coming March, but in fact I am rooting for a second JLaw win. If only for a marvelous and well-deserved record: youngest actress ever to win two Oscars.

While Jennifer Lawrence stole the show, in fact all of the cast performed very well. Acting nominations for Adams, Bale en Cooper are definitely well deserved as well as the SAG for best ensemble. Same for the nominations for costume design and production design. It all looked amazing and instantly transports you to the seventies. I still can’t believe how on earth American Hustle missed out on a hair and makeup nomination though, with this fabulous (there’s no other word) array of hairstyles on literally everyone on screen.

I do have however some critique. The film started off rather slow and unclear. It took me some time to get into it. In my opinion it was all just a little lengthy and not to the point. Later on it got way better and it ended up being just fine. However for me it wasn’t necessarily the screenplay or direction that makes this film worthwhile, but the amazing performances by the fantastic cast (repeating: Jennifer Lawrence) and the wonderful costumes and hairstyles.

70/100

If you have seen American Hustle, I'm looking forward to hear your thoughts! I liked fellow best picture nominees Gravity, The Wolf of Wall Street and Philomena better, do you agree?

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