American Hustle is the perfect example of what the American Dream really is: you can be anybody so long as you can fool everybody. From striving to be a wealthy “art dealer” to making a name as an FBI Agent, everyone has a role that they invent and the true struggle is to fool yourself. We have been told since we could talk, “You can be anything you want to be, so long as you work for it.” Or in this case, hustle for it.
Irving Rosenfeld, played well by Christian Bale, makes a living by conning people out of thousands of dollars and selling fake art. Richie DiMaso (Bradley Cooper) is a rookie FBI agent who’s looking for that one big case that will make him a star. And Sydney Prosser, painfully played by Amy Adams, is a sad yet equally deceiving side-girl for Rosenfeld. All of these characters are trying to “survive.” Bale does a pretty good job as the charismatic Rosenfeld, with his Jersey accent never wavering and his elaborate combover, he is completely believable. Cooper plays DiMaso comparable to his character in Silver Lining’s Playbook, as written and directed by David O’Russell, With his sudden outbursts and erratic behavior, his performance is a little too familiar.
Jeremy Renner and Jennifer Lawrence are the true standouts in this nearly three-hour film. While Renner slips in and out of his accent, he makes up for it in his genuine performance as Mayor Carmine Polito. Lawrence is the hilariously manipulative wife of Rosenfeld and whether she’s almost burning down the house or explaining why she’s always right, she earns laughs.
Like I said, Bradley Cooper and truthfully Jennifer Lawrence both play character similar to their previous in Silver Lining’s Playbook but I feel Lawrence expanded the role more than Cooper. This is a better ensemble film than characters standing alone, it works best as a whole. All of these people are struggling. in a world of being con artists, to survive and thrive.
Award Season Predictions- Jennifer Lawrence could definitely take Supporting Actress in a Comedy/Musical.