Jennifer Lopez has had an extraordinary career over the last 30 years. She started as a flygirl dancer on the sketch show In Living Color, then parlayed that into a pop music career, which led to acting roles in films. Between hit singles and red carpet diva moments, she pushed her profile ever higher. But her latest project, Hustlers, may represent the pinnacle of her success. If these Hustlers ratings are anything to go by, Lopez may have just produced and starred in one of the biggest films of 2019. So you're going to want to get your tickets to the theater ASAP.
Hustlers is playing the awards game like it expects to win. The movie had its premiere at the 44th annual Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), where it played to rave reviews. Critics were even calling for Lopez to be put in the running for Oscar gold. It has all the hallmarks of an Academy-favored film as well, based on the true story of a group of New York strippers who decided after the 2008 financial crash to go full Robin Hood, stealing from wealthy Wall Street bankers who went unpunished for their roles in the crash, and giving to the poor, aka themselves.
Critics are gaga over it so far. Hustlers currently ranks at 95% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes, with 41 reviews logged.
Ann Hornaday of the Washington Post says this film is a Lopez triumph.
In this raunchy, gloriously liberated revenge fantasy, Lopez rules with seductive, triumphant authority. Not only do we climb into her fur, we'll happily follow her anywhere.
Justin Chang of the Los Angeles Times called Lopez "electrifying."
Lopez gives her most electrifying screen performance since Out of Sight, slipping the movie into her nonexistent pocket from the moment she strides out onto a neon-lighted stage in a rhinestone bodysuit.
At Variety, Peter Debruge says the most crucial part is that all the women are treated like well-rounded characters.
Hustlers humanizes the women at its center, giving them boyfriends, backstories and, most importantly, agency.
As for how the film will do at the box office, the momentum this film has coming out of TIFF and going into wide release could send it shooting skyward. For Lopez, it could represent a career-high, not just for ratings, but also for box office numbers. It also could be STXfilm's biggest opening this year as well.
Lorene Scafaria's female-fronted crime drama has momentum heading into its opening weekend thanks to a stellar 95 percent score on Rotten Tomatoes, the best of Lopez's career. If prerelease predictions are any indication, Jennifer Lopez is poised to make a notable box office comeback this weekend with the debut of Hustlers, a female-ensemble film also starring Constance Wu. The movie is tipped to gross $25 million in its domestic debut — a career best for Lopez in terms of a live-action pic, not adjusted for inflation.
Hustlers opens across the U.S. on Friday, Sept. 13, 2019.