With regards to American Hustle: yeah, each character was a caricature, and each actor did as much scenery-chewing and over-acting as they could. It worked for me, because the whole thing (the music, the costumes, the plot) was so ridiculous and over the top in the first place that I think it would have been weirder if the actors had been more subdued or naturalistic. Let it also be known that I'm also a big fan of 'unnecessary' dialogue. I love the flavor that it can add to a film, and I'm all for detours if they're accompanied by verbal exchanges worth sinking my teeth into. In fact, I think that's a fair way to describe American Hustle--it's very chewy.
Samurai I: Musashi Miyamoto (1954): 7/10
How do you feel about watching a berserk Toshiro Mifune beat up on guys with a wooden sword for 3/4ths of a movie? In glorious, seriously vibrant, beautiful technicolor? Seem like a good thing to you? Yeah, seems like a good thing to me too.
Samurai II: Duel at Ichijoji Temple (1955): 7/10
Less beautiful than the first film (until the final fight sequence, which is worth the wait and then some), but also more fulfilling. More romance (the GF was reduced to a squeeing girlie on several occasions), more action, more Mifune doing what Mifune does best. It's too bad about all the soundstage filming that litters this movie though--the first film had considerably more natural outdoor shots, many of which were truly lovely, and to which the set filming and painted backdrops that dominate here just cannot compare. Regardless, looking forward to the third and final part! (It's probably been 15 or more years since the last time I saw these, and my memory is foggy as to how it all wraps up. Seriously enjoying revisiting them, though.)