Movie Spotlight: American Hustle

Wondering which movie to see this weekend?  Hoping to check off all of the Oscar nominated films for Best Picture from your watch-list?  Well, there is no better place to start than with American Hustle!  At the forefront of the 2014 Oscar race with a staggering ten nominations, it is one of the most buzzed about films of the past year and will likely collect several trophies at the March 2 ceremony.

From director David O. Russell, (Silver Linings Playbook, The Fighter)Hustle is a dazzling 70’s throwback that is anchored by the talents of its stellar cast—including Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper and Jeremy Renner.  The story revolves around con man Irving Rosenfeld, (Bale), who along with his beautiful female accomplice and lover Sydney Prosser, (Adams), is the mastermind of a loan scamming business.  When their operation is discovered by the FBI, the two are forced to help agent Richie DiMaso, (Cooper), bring down corrupt members of the U.S. Congress and a New Jersey mayor as part of a deal to save themselves.  The amusingly curly-haired Bradley Cooper — there is actually a great scene in which we see his hair in curlers! — plays the passionately determined agent who becomes entangled in Sydney’s deceptive romantic advances.  In the midst of all the action, Irving’s emotionally unstable yet oddly endearing wife Rosalyn, (Lawrence), desperately tries to insert herself in his business and save their marriage. 

Already earning a Golden Globe award and an Oscar nomination for the role, Jennifer Lawrence easily steals all of her scenes despite the film’s wealth of star power, clearly cementing her status as a new favorite leading lady in Hollywood. Fans of The Hunger Games star will enjoy seeing her step into a wildly different character from Katniss Everdeen, a performance that will likely earn her a second Academy Award.

Although the film does run a bit long at 138 minutes, its twists and turns are full of constant action, inviting us into an enticing and flashy 1970’s world.  The Golden Globe winner for Best Motion Picture Comedy or Musical truly stands out due to the engaging performances of its leads.  For the fashion lovers out there, the film’s stunning costumes do not disappoint, as big hair and daring dresses prevail for Adams and Lawrence. Although the men might not get to rock any beautiful vintage dresses, Christian Bale’s hairpiece and Cooper’s curly locks are hilarious and fun markers of the time.  For pure entertainment’s sake, American Hustle is a truly satisfying trip to the movies.  Check out the trailer here, and enjoy!