REVIEWS: The Hustle ultimately cheats its audience

If a screenwriting pair is going to re-imagine a well-regarded cult comedy, the least they could do is create something better than this gender-swapped remake.

The Hustle takes two actresses at the top of their game and gives them a weak, limp script to work with.

While sporadically gut-busting, this Dirty Rotten Scoundrels retread ultimately lacks the brilliance of Steve Martin and Michael Caine that made the original so captivating.

As two con artists hustling men of their money in a little french village, Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson offer less surprises than the Ocean’s 11 movies, and the art of the con just isn’t particularly fascinating.

The two actresses do their best, but Oscar-winner Hathaway is woefully miscast and Wilson — despite her best efforts — is unable to carry this film on her own.

Don’t get me wrong: You will laugh. There is no doubting there are some pretty lovely moments here.

But if you expected The Hustle to kick the summer movie season off with hilarious, chortle-a-minute brilliance, it merely provides more chuckles and head shakes than any real reactions.

2/5 Stars

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