After waiting a solid two months, I think it’s about time to make my official call on American Hustle, before it’s released on DVD and all the cheap-o’s get their chance to watch it from the library devoid of the risk of paying admission to see a bad movie.
All-stars Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and Jeremy Renner make up the bulk of the A-list cast for American Hustle. Bale plays a con-artist just trying to make some cash with his female cohort (Adams); but when FBI agent Cooper busts their operation, they get suckered into doing something much bigger and conning on a larger scale than ever before at the risk of going to jail for life or walking away with no strings attached. Interesting plot; nowhere near enough meaningful content to justify the insane two plus hour run time.
The acting is great, the plot is great, and the payoff at the end of the film is phenomenal. The issue lies in the writing. This movie is labeled as a comedy, apparently. I find this odd, as I only recall maybe a scene or two in the entire film which got a chuckle out of me, even though there was quite a bit of black humor sprinkled throughout the movie. That, mixed with a drawn out run time and characters that just wouldn’t be feasible in real life, make the events of American Hustle pretty hard to swallow. Like I said, the payoff at the end is the only bit which really made me feel like I got the sly con movie I came for. The rest of it is an uncomfortable mix of romance, tension, mentally unstable characters and not a whole lot of memorable dialogue.
In conclusion, I would go out and see American Hustle for one of two reasons:
1.) You want to see what Christian Bale’s body looks like after he undergoes Honey Boo Boo treatment coming off of being Batman
2.) You want to kill two and a half hours of your day watching a movie that has an absurd amount of Oscar nominations