TIFF 2019: Our Review of ‘Hustlers’

Posted in Festival Coverage, Film Festivals, Movies, Theatrical, TIFF 2019 by - September 08, 2019
TIFF 2019: Our Review of ‘Hustlers’

In what’s easily the most engaging film performance she’s given since the ‘90s, J-Lo scorches the screen as a business-savvy stripper who, along with a group of her closest friends and co-workers, set out to scam money off of the Wall Street douchebags that regularly frequent the club.

Inspired by the true-life New York Magazine article written in 2015 by Jessica Pressler, Hustlers follows a quartet of women (Lopez, Constance Wu, Keke Palmer, and Lili Reinhart) fed up with dancing for peanuts in front of uber-wealthy dudes who treat them as nothing but disposable sex objects. So they turn the tables, creating a scheme where they target certain clients, secretly drug their drinks and then run up massive charges on their credit cards, banking on the fact that they won’t report it to the police for fear of the shame it’ll bring to their lives. To their delight, it works miraculously well. And while what they’re doing is clearly illegal, is it really any different than the gross victimization that their wealthy targets commit on a daily basis?

Unfortunately, Hustlers doesn’t dig as deep into these ideas as it could. At the end of the day, it’s a slick Hollywood crowd pleaser, telling its energetic story in a tidy Goodfellas-lite arc. But with a game cast and a backdrop of neon lights and 2000’s club hits, it’s still a hell of a lot of fun.

Definitely could have used more Cardi B, though.

This post was written by
After his childhood dream of playing for the Mighty Ducks fell through, Mark turned his focus to the glitz and glamour of the movies. He's covered the extensive Toronto film scene for online outlets and is a filmmaker himself, currently putting the final touches on a low-budget (okay, no-budget) short film to be released in the near future. You can also find him behind the counter as product manager of Toronto's venerable film institution, Bay Street Video.
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