American Hustle, made by one of my favourite directors, is a deftly crafted and cleverly scripted film about ABSCAM in the 70's.
Now let's start with the cast of American Hustle, Christian Bale was almost unrecognisable as Iriving Rosenfield, an irresistibly likable conman, and I see an Oscar nomination coming his way. Amy Adams was amazing and (I haven't seen The Fighter or Her yet) this was the most impressive performance that she has done, she played Sydney Prosser/Edith Greensley, Irving's partner in crime and a woman who is always afraid to be herself. Bradley Cooper plays Richie DiMaso, a federal agent who tries to bust corrupt politicians and congress men and to do that he teams up with Sydney and Irving, and falls for Sydney. Jeremy Renner plays Mayor Polito, one of the politicians that Richie tries to bust but Irving befriends him. Jennifer Lawrence plays Irving's reckless and unstable wife Rosalyn, and there has been a lot of Oscar buzz around and she really was great in her role. And Louis C.K was great in his role as Richie's boss in the bureau.
David O. Russell said himself that he cares about characters more than plot. The plot in American Hustle isn't mind-bending, but with the story he has, he does a brilliant job. His directing was great! It was vibrant and irrepressible and this is what I think this film benefited most, and if anyone different directed it, it wouldn't be the same. I'm completely sure he has an Oscar nomination in the bag.
Overall, American Hustle is a vibrant, fun and impeccably cast story about con-men/women in the 70's and love and loss, and largely benefits from David O. Russell's impressive direction and is a brilliant character study!
The Croods is a charming animation with a talented voice cast, but in the end it felt a little sloppy, mostly run-of-the-mill, very predictable, as if I knew how it would end after like a half hour of the movie, and the second act was very repetitive