Wednesday, 5 March 2014

American Hustle Review

American Hustle starring Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper Movie Review

Director: David O. Russell

UK Release date: 1st January 2014

Running Time: 138 minutes

Starring: Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Jeremy Renner, Robert De Niro

One of the last years biggest films and one that won at the BAFTA's and was unlucky not to win at the Oscars was "American Hustle" from David O. Russel whose other work includes "Silver Linings Playbook" (2012) and "The Fighter" (2012).   Bringing in a star studded cast of actors, some of which he has worked before, "American Hustle" is an impressive, stylish and entertaining film on all levels.  The cast list includes Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and Jeremy Renner with Michael Pena and Robert De Niro in much smaller roles.

Irving Rosenfeld (Bale) is a hustler but he only hustles enough to not get in too deep.  Along with his partner Sydney Prosser (Adams), the pair are forced to team up with a crazy and practically out of control FBI agent, Richie DiMaso (Cooper) and end up coming head to  head with the Mafia and others in their plan to escape facing justice or even worse. 

American Hustle Movie Review

The whole film has a touch of class from the details portrayed, to the costumes, lighting, music and acting performances, it really is aesthetically pleasing to watch. O. Russell's vision is crisp and clear cut, making the movie engaging throughout.  The film oozes confidence and the on screen relationships works perfectly, leading to great individual performances.  

Of these, Bale stands out.  Boasting a pot-belly that is far from his usual look he does not just portray the character of Irving Rosenfield - he is Irving Rosenfield.  He is convincing, funny and relateable making it believeable that his character is someone who knows what they are doing while also feeling the frustration of having to listen to someone who does not know what they are doing, which in this case is Richie DiMaso. From the way he holds himself and the accent used, Bale really shows how good of an actor he is. 

The rest of the cast is also very impressive, albeit not in the same league as Bale.  Adams and Lawrence deliver two great performances that bring a different dimension to the film.  They bring stability and quirkiness to the scenes they appear in and particularly help in the twists that appear throughout the movie.  Likewise, Cooper and Renner, give honest performances that fit perfectly into the film.  Both particularly fit into the style of the film with there fashioned hair-dos.

America Hustle Movie Review

The soundtrack used for the film is also very impressive featuring songs from Duke Ellington and Electric Light Orchestra. One song by the latter is also the main theme for the movie and is one you will be purchasing afterwards.  The music fits in perfectly with each scene and especially in two scenes where charcters are singing along to the music track - it really adds to the movie, providing both comedy and realism.

"American Hustle" is definitely a must watch film.  From great acting and directing to set design and accompanying soundtrack, this movie has it all to bring a well rounded film to the big screen.  The dialect is interesting and the movie itself will keep you guessing right up to the end.  It was unlucky to come away from the Oscars empty handed but there is no shame when other excellent films like "The Wolf of Wall Street" (2013) also failed to pick up any awards.  It really does show the great depth of films that have ben produced in the last year.

M+F Rating: 8/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

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