Film review: American Hustle

American Hustle rounds out the top nominations at the Academy Awards this year, alongside Gravity and 12 Years a SlaveThis latest film by sometimes quirky (Three Kings, I Heart Huckabees) but recently serious (The Fighter, Silver Linings Playbook) filmmaker David O. Russell is certainly not as thought-provoking as either of the other two, but it does have the advantage of real life imitating it exactly at the time of its release.

It is set in New Jersey in the 1970s, and if the Garden State is famous for one thing except gambling, it is corruption. The recent scandals that have squeezed all the air out of the room at the governor’s office, starting with the so-called “Bridgegate” fiasco and continuing with inquiries into other possibilities of an abuse of public office, have reminded the country of the state’s long history of graft, perhaps only eclipsed by the boys of Chicago.

The film, which takes place over a few weeks in 1978 and is based on real events, stars Christian Bale and Amy Adams as two big-time con artists who have a business that promises desperate clients the possibility (and this is important, because technically there is no explicit quid pro quo) of a loan, if they pay a small fee upfront. The loans never materialize, but somehow the clients are all too ashamed to ask for their money back, and these two make big money for themselves.
For the full review, please visit The Prague Post.