‘American Hustle’ director David O Russell took his name off this goofy, good-hearted but chaotic political satire which he shot way back in 2008 between ‘I Heart Huckabees’ and ‘The Fighter’, and which is only now reaching cinemas. It’s a mess – but a respectable one.
Based on a novel by co-writer Kristin Gore (daughter of Al), ‘Accidental Loves’ rides on the loopy premise that a young woman, Alice (Jessica Biel), ends up with a nail embedded in her head while in the middle of a marriage proposal.Having been refused healthcare, Alice has her cause taken up by thrusting young Washington politican Howard (Jake Gyllenhaal), who she joins in DC with a ragtag bunch of hangers-on, including a priest with a constant hard-on.
‘Accidental Love’ feels a little like ‘I Heart Huckabees’ in its self-conscious anarchy and endless ensemble scenes, although this is a softer, less bold film all round. Few of Gore and co’s observations on the political and media world feel sharp and the misplaced screwball energy is wearying. It’s destined to be more read about than watched.