In the 1970’s and 1980’s, crime in America was at its peak. The U.S. spent most of that time in recession, and the whole nation resorted to desperate measures. It was a time when even the good guys were turning bad.
“American Hustle” is a dramatic comedy film released in 2013 and directed by David O. Russel. Staring Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, and Jenner Lawrence, the movie is loosely based on the controversial Abscam operation led by the FBI in the late 1970’s.
Christian Bale and Amy Adams play two con artists who were forced to work for a crazy FBI agent played by Bradley Cooper to expose and bring down power-brokers, mobsters, and corrupt politicians in the New Jersey crime scene. The operation becomes overly complicated for the three protagonists as more unexpected people get involved in the plan, bringing the whole operation down in a very entertaining turn of events.
Much like a lot of Russel’s films from before, American Hustle defies the genre by adding humor to it that isn’t coy and doesn’t take away from the seriousness in tone. The often awkward but brilliantly played main characters are what keeps the film going in moments where the plot seems to be dragging on for longer than needed.
Although not praised as much as David O. Russel’s other films, American Hustle becomes an instant classic that is often recommended by movie-goers. It is definitely worth watching at least once.