My Review of "Hustlers"
An entertaining crime movie that some people might have overlook.
Hustlers came out in 2019 and I think people overlooked this movie because of the wrong reasons. It looks like a run of the mill crime movie about stripper. In a way it is but if you watch the movie, you'll realize there are layers to this crime movie that you wouldn't really think about. Even crazier is that this movie was loosely based off a true story.
This movie starts off with a character by the name of Destiny being interviewed by a journalist. It looks like she's relatively well off but it seems as though she has a few skeletons in her closet. The journalist basically pushes for information about her relationship with a woman named Ramona. So this brings us to Destiny's origin story.
She's the main character and basically a single woman trying to make money to support her grandmother and herself. Bills are piling up and her grandmother has no way of supporting the two anymore so she's basically selling her belongings to survive. She has no where to turn to but strip clubs. There are a number of strip clubs that she worked at and she didn't seem to be a very good stripper at that.
All this was changed when she met Ramona. A beautiful experienced veteran of stripping. she knows all the moves and how to exchange with the men that she encountered. Destiny was basically in awe of Ramona from the minute she laid eyes on her. Pretty soon Destiny would be Ramona's protégé. The two of them would work men for tons of cash.
After a while the two worked a great formula to create an abundant amount of cash. The only thing is this was all in 2007. In 2008, there was a huge stock market crash. I guess this is how you can understand that it's based on true life events as many of the situations they mention afterwards really did happen. As wall street went down so did a lot of businesses. This wide spread austerity resulted in no one going to the strip club anymore. Soon all the strippers would have to find ordinary jobs to make ends meet again.
At this point Destiny had had a child and things had changed for her because now she has to take care of not only her grandmother but her child. As a protective mother she would do anything for her daughter and if that meant that she had to get into stripping again so be it. So she gets into stripping and finds out the whole industry had changed. Things were now incredibly sleazy and a far cry from the days she used to dance.
She coincidentally meets up with Ramona and realizes that Ramona had become creative during Destiny's hiatus. She ran a new racket that would be more lucrative than stripping. Desperate for cash Destiny gets in on this racket and soon things spiral from bad to worse.
This movie has a lot of interesting undertones about misogyny and social norms. The women in this movie were able to use these social norms to their advantage. Watching the movie I thought that it was a pretty ingenious plan because it was kind of foolproof. The only thing of course that gets in the way of success is greed.
I would have thought with the money they accumulated during their stripping or scheming times they'd get into other businesses or invest. It didn't seem like they saved the money at all. Some of these issues did kind of get to me at some points but not too much because you know how people are. Especially if you didn't grow up with money you'd want to enjoy the labor of your work to its fullest.
There is also some hiccups closer to the last quarter of the movie. It seems a bit uneven. The way that they just abruptly bring in this crazy character that ruins the whole operation. For three quarters of the movie I believe that Ramona and Destiny were brilliant business women and I'm supposed to believe that they just all of a sudden got a change of heart and got greedy? It's kind of a hard to swallow twist in the third quarter of the movie. You'll see what I mean if you get to watch this movie.
Overall, I did enjoy this movie despite the fact that there wasn't really that much stripping involved in the movie. I thought this was kind of a false advertisement. They also focused on some of the characters in the commercials when they only have like 2 or 3 lines in the entire movie. I felt that it was a great movie and they didn't have to focus on some of the dumb advertising hooks to pull people in. I have to give this movie a 7 out of 10. It can be enjoyed by all but there's some problems with its ending. If you got duped by the advertising like I did, you'll still be able to enjoy this movie.