Universal acclaim - based on 47 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 823 Ratings

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  • Starring: , , , , , , ,
  • Summary: A fictional film set in the alluring world of one of the most stunning scandals to rock our nation, American Hustle tells the story of con man Irving Rosenfeld (Christian Bale), who along with his equally cunning and seductive partner Sydney Prosser (Amy Adams) is forced to work for a wild FBI agent Richie DiMaso (Bradley Cooper). DiMaso pushes them into a world of Jersey powerbrokers and mafia that's as dangerous as it is enchanting. Caught between the con-artists and Feds is Carmine Polito (Jeremy Renner), the passionate, volatile, New Jersey political operator, but it's Irving's unpredictable wife Rosalyn (Jennifer Lawrence) who could be the one to pull the thread that brings the entire world crashing down. [Sony Pictures] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 46 out of 47
  2. Negative: 0 out of 47
  1. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Dec 21, 2013
    A work of tremendous confidence and dazzling showmanship that may just be a delirious movie-as-drug-high or may, if you choose to read it this way, contain a level of commentary about the nature of America and the illusioneering of Hollywood.
  2. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Dec 12, 2013
    High-energy comedy comes naturally to the filmmaker. He exults in free association, emotional riffs, in the craziness that underlies ostensibly rational behavior. The crosscurrents have crosscurrents in his films, but the current that carries everything along here is announced by the first strains of music from the screen: Duke Ellington's "Jeep's Blues," with one of the most exuberant passages in all of jazz. David O. Russell does buoyancy better than anyone.
  3. Reviewed by: Mick LaSalle
    Dec 18, 2013
    American Hustle is David O. Russell's best film, one that finds him in that ideal zone of spontaneity and complete control.
  4. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Dec 12, 2013
    For some, the silver linings in Russell’s movies represent a failure to embrace darkness. I see them as a humanist’s act of resistance. That’s why American Hustle ranks with the year’s best movies. It gets under your skin.
  5. Reviewed by: Ann Hornaday
    Dec 19, 2013
    The warmth that courses through American Hustle makes it irresistible, with Russell’s affection for his characters and his sharp-eyed evocation of their recessionary times, honoring their struggle, however dishonest, rather than denigrating it.
  6. Reviewed by: Kim Newman
    Dec 16, 2013
    An extremely entertaining, brilliantly acted, highly diverting film which — like all hustles — delivers less than it promises. Still, it’s worth being taken for the ride.
  7. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Dec 10, 2013
    American Hustle is a movie that was built backward, or inside out: It puts actors’ needs before the audience’s. There’s no heart under those polyester lapels, and what all that Aqua Net is pasting together is a few sparse strands of wispy story.

See all 47 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 44 out of 226
  1. Dec 13, 2013
    David O. Russel proves once again how good of a director he is. The acting is also hugely strong, most notably from Jennifer Lawrence and Christian Bale. This is a sure bet for the Oscar race and as a whole its just a fantastic film, beautifully acted, vibrantly filmed and if you're a fan of Silver Linings Playbook or other O. Russel pics you'll love this film. Collapse
  2. Jan 3, 2014
    A brillant classic American film with intense, terrific ensemble acting not seen since "Pulp Fiction". Oscar acting noms for everybody especially Christian Bale, Amy Adams, JLaw, and Jeremy Renner. Expand
  3. Mar 2, 2014
    I can't give an opinion on this movie without talking about David O. Russell's previous film first.

    I didn't enjoy Silver Linings Playbook
    when i first saw it. I thought the characters were too crazy and the story was just over-the-top. As the months went by, i started realizing that, maybe, we all are really crazy; each in his/her own subtle way. David O. Russell just denotes this idea, without the subtle so as to make it clear to us. That's when i watched the movie again and really loved it. And then i watched American Hustle, and loved it as well.

    The characters are really screwed up. Thanks to very stellar performances, especially by Christian Bale and Jennifer Lawrence, the characters really exemplify the craziness inherent in many people. Amy Adams is brilliant, while Bradley Cooper should have taken the craziness down a notch. The directing is superb, and so is the script. And it has one of the best soundtracks of the year.

    I'm so glad to have seen this film. David O. Russell is one of my favorite director's right now.
  4. Jan 15, 2014
    Bradly Cooper has to be one of the most underrated actors in Hollywood; Few flaws in this movie. The role of the "good" politicians just trying to "help" their communities was foolishly unrealistic Expand
  5. Dec 22, 2013
    AMERICAN HUSTLE explores the uniquely American need for self-reinvention and our obsession with success and finding a better life. Unlike most filmmakers, David O. Russell is able to use the great American con as a metaphor for our larger personal ills. Unfortunately, Russell does not seem like the right director for this tale. Scenes are lethargic and go on for far too long. A really super music score is laid down in the most perfunctory fashion. His cast is totally game and look amazing in their 70s garb but they too often come across as lifeless. Except for Jennifer Lawrence who totally steals the show! She delivers an astoundingly insightful performance that is both over the top and subtle. She's funny, whacked, sad and lonely--all at the same time. A miraculous performance. If only AMERICAN HUSTLE reached the same dizzying somber heights. Expand
  6. Jan 5, 2014
    A few thoughts on this film... It was like each actor was trying to out-do each other with over-the-top, Oscar-bait performances. The acting felt artificial and too cerebral. Poorly cast and the accents of the characters were all over the place. Jeremy Renner as an Italian New Jersey mayor? Huh? I find Christian Bale arrogant and smug, so his presence here didn't help. And he's not convincing as a balding, paunchy New York Jew. Jennifer Lawrence doesn't belong in this movie and can't do accents. Amy Adams is wonderful, but she's a little too sweet for this role. Great outfits, though. Expand
  7. Mar 10, 2014
    Good actors, poor story, extremely boring movie. They could make the ending brilliant by saying something like "And then he found a five dollar bill!"

See all 226 User Reviews


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