Corruption and Politics. Nowadays those two nearly go hand in hand, but in 1980’s Long Island, New York, one of the biggest politically corrupt takedowns in history took place supervised by the FBI called “Abscam” (short for Arab Scam). A loosely based version of Abscam is the subject of this new David O’ Russell feature, AMERICAN HUSTLE.
This film boasts an all-star cast that includes former Oscar Winner Jennifer Lawrence and former Oscar Nominees Bradley Cooper , Christian Bale. and Amy Adams with a cameo appearance by Robert DeNiro.
Mr. Russell’s wild ride begins with con artists Irving Rosenfeld (Christian Bale) and Sydney Prosser (Amy Adams) as they get busted for fraud by FBI Agent Richie DiMaso (Bradley Cooper). In exchange for zero jail time they are convinced to commit one last con on behalf of the federal government. And that is when all the fun begins.
Let me just say that Jennifer Lawrence is a beast of an actor!!! She is barely in her mid-20’s and has the instincts of inhabiting the neurotic Long Island housewife Rosalyn Rosenfeld with such conviction and maturity that you are instantly reminded of why she is an Oscar winner. She is simply amazing!!!
Ashamed to admit this, but that damn Christian Bale is so fierce that I spent the whole movie thinking he was Josh Brolin. It wasn’t until the credits rolled that I was pleasantly surprised. Like Lawrence, he physically, mentally and artistically inhabits every character he ever takes on. Brilliant.
Bradley Cooper is a maniac….love him and Amy Adams is totally playing against type as the American pretending to be British royalty/mistress wanting a happy ending. Of course, it is always a treat to see Robert DeNiro in ANY role, but he is especially frightening in the uncredited role of mobster Victor Telligio. However, it is the breakthrough comedic performance of Louis C.K as Stoddard Thorsen that will have you in stitches.
Kudos to David O’ Russell for bringing his “A” game to the screen…again! Can’t wait to see what he has in store for us next time. AMERICAN HUSTLE opens in theaters on Christmas Day.