Director: David O. Russell. Cast: Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Jeremy Renner, Louis C.K., Michael Peña. 138 min. Rated R. Crime/Drama.
This is what happened: For months, they advertised the guts out of a decent director's movie of four great actors playing larger-than-life hustlers in the oh-so-cool 70s. So I'm already expecting a masterpiece. But then the movie starts, and it keeps going. And I'm not sure where it's going. And it's too much Scorsese Goodfellas/Casino-style narration/editing/cinematography. But then, there's this one scene: Bradley Cooper, at a momentary triumph, laughing his head off, imitating Louis C.K.'s character. And it's so well done. That one scene, and every prior element that made that scene possible, deserves recognition.