American Hustle is has a heavy dose of Scorsese circa 1970s with the violence replaced more by black humour.
Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Jennifer Lawrence, Jeremy Renner and Bradley Cooper all deliver excellent performances. Robert De Niro makes a cameo and reminds the audience why he was at one time the best screen actor in the world.
This is a black comedy-drama set in the late 1970's based on the true life Abscam scandal. FBI agents and con artists joined up to frame politicians for taking bribes.
Bale plays a pot bellied hustler with bad hair. Amy Adams is his partner in crime who passes off as an English Aristocrat. Both have struck it rich in a scam where they dupe arrangement fees for loans that never come to fruition.
Cooper is the ambitious FBI agent with a big ego who has the the mafia in his sights and wants to reel in a big catch but he might be out of his depth.
Jeremy Renner is the charismatic Mayor of New Jersey. A man with a big heart who wants to get things done and Bale feels guilty about getting him involved in the sting operation.
Director David O Russell gets great performances from his cast but the film feels flabby which blunts the story and the humour feels stretched at times.