Release date: 10th May 2019
The Hustle is closely based on another film from the 1980s called Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, and it is clear from the credit sequence near the beginning that the film is trying to replicate, or at least pay homage to, the comedy of that era.
With Rebel Wilson filling one of the two main roles, we already know what kind of film we’re going to get – lots of silliness, outrageous dialogue, and perhaps a few fat jokes at her expense. But with Anne Hathaway taking up the second role, we’re thrown something of a curveball. Once more Hathaway proves that she won’t be typecast, and she exercises her versatility here
Wilson and Hathaway play two con artists who, after showing off their own differing skills on multiple victims, challenge one another to swindle some randomly selected man of his well-earned cash for their right to take up residence in the town, whilst the other must leave.
Given that this is a gender-swapped remake of sorts, there are opportunities for the film to be organically progressive, but more often than not, we watch as the script uses Rebel Wilson for fat jokes.
There are a couple of moments of hope as we watch Wilson open up on her reasons for swindling men, but this moment is a rare one.
Overall, the film treads carefully. Never being outrageous enough to incite lasting memorable moments, nor being clever enough to encourage more socially progressive views. Yet, if nothing else, The Hustle is good, mostly harmless, fun.
Rated: 3/5 stars
Reviewed by: Becky Yeomans