American Hustle ★★★★

I know this film's reputation, already shaky upon release, has declined to near-memory hole status... and to be fair, it does feel like a relic from ancient times already (not just because Louis CK plays an FBI guy in it), but I still had a blast with it and found it totally winning and funny without the tone-deafness that could easily have befallen it. I so rarely enjoy this sort of slick star-driven modern entertainment that I have to sort of celebrate when I find it this engaging and buoyant, so I don't think there's much point in questioning it. My perception of what a breezy crowd-pleaser is apparently needs to be adjusted, because I have a lot of trouble discerning what's supposed to be so embarrassing about this, yet I can't watch a Star Wars or a James Bond without falling the fuck asleep. I think Amy Adams and Jennifer Lawrence do a particularly grand job of finding depth and emotion in relatively ordinary stock characterizations.

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