Yesterday, I had the pleasure of going to see American Hustle for the first time. It is now currently my favorite movie. But, does it pass the Bechedel Test?
I think it does pass the test. There are (1) three women who (2) talk to each other about (3) something other than a man. However, Edith/Sydney (Amy Adams) and Rosalyn (Jennifer Lawrence) do not talk to each other about anything other than a man (Irving, played by Christian Bale). They fight over him in fact, calling each other sluts and whores for both going out with him. But Rosalyn and Dolly (Elizabeth Rohm) do talk to each other about nail polish, their children, and both make jokes while drunk at dinner. While this might not be the best example of passing the Bechedel Test, it just squeaks by.
One must keep in mind, however, that this movie took place in the 1970's, when feminism was just starting to be a movement of which people took notice. Women were still just meant to be housewives, taking care of the children while the husband was busy at work. Authors would only imagine that nail polish and children were all they had to talk about. But this didn't stop Edith/Sydney. (Let's just call her Edith).
Edith, in my mind, was the strongest character in the whole film. She was the brains of the entire con operation. She basically led the business in the beginning with Irving, turning it into a believable scam which gave her and Irving wealth. Without her, the whole con would never have made its way into the papers and attracted the FBI (in a positive way).
Because this movie was made now, in the 21st century, they gave this role of a strong protagonist to a woman. If it were made when it took place, this role would have been given to a man.