Blu-ray | DVD | On Demand
Directed by Jason Winer
Starring Russell Brand, Helen Mirren, Greta Gerwig, Jennifer Garner, Geraldine James, Luis GuzmÃ¡n
Warner Bros. Home Video
Release Date: July 15, 2011
Arthur, stars Russell Brand as the title character who’s a rich, alcoholic, heir to a business empire. Through his life, Arthur has squandered his fortune on space suits, a magnetic floating bed, telephone booth aquariums, movie memorabilia, specifically movie cars, and lots and lots of alcohol. After Arthur gets arrested for wrecking the Batmobile from Batman and Robin, Arthurâ€™s mother (Geraldine James), the keeper of the family fortune, gives him an ultimatum: either straighten up and get his life together by marrying Susan Johnson (Jennifer Garner), or lose his inheritance. The only problem, Arthur has fallen in love Naomi (Greta Gerwig), a simple woman from Queens. Will Arthur give up everything for the woman he loves? Or will he sacrifice the one he loves for the almighty dollar? You can only find out by watching the movie.
Or by thinking logically if youâ€™ve seen any movie that has this plot, which Iâ€™m sure you have since 80 percent of movies in existence all have this premise, according to Hunter Campâ€™s False Movie Facts. And thatâ€™s the main problem with the film.
It seems as though, in the case of several bad movies, the creators simply hired a star and said, â€œGo be yourself.â€ Which Brand does, and thatâ€™s not really a problem, since the lovably troubled rich kid is indeed lovable and charming. Heâ€™s toned down a bit, but the persona is more apparent than any character description from a script. The problem is thatâ€™s apparently the only thing they were banking on. This is evidenced by the massive amount of onlookers the movie had while filming in New York. People were literally in the background just staring at the production of the movie. I donâ€™t know if youâ€™ve ever been to New York City, but it takes a lot to get the people on the street to stop to see whatâ€™s going on. I was on a subway with a woman screaming in tongues, and nobody did anything at all. One of the worst moments of this was in a specific scene outside of Naomiâ€™s house when the people across the street kept changing positions and numbers with each shot. This wouldnâ€™t have been severely distracting if it wasnâ€™t for the fact that they were just staring at Russell Brand.
And oh yeah, the plot! The plot is trite, predictable, and overall boring, but again, I donâ€™t think anyone working on the movie cared about that, but I did. And Iâ€™m sure that Iâ€™m not the only one out there that likes to watch good movies. So, if you want something thatâ€™s original brought to this sort of storyline, well then you need to keep on walking. On the other hand, if you want to witness some really great character moments, then I strongly suggest this one.
The standout of Arthur is the relationship of Brandâ€™s Arthur and the always wonderful Helen Mirrenâ€™s Hobson, who is basically Arthurâ€™s nanny. There is a wonderful wonderful chemistry between Brandâ€™s charismatic klutz and Mirrenâ€™s compassionate caretaker. The back and forth between the two is what Iâ€™m still thinking about after the credits rolled, and Iâ€™m forever grateful that the filmmakers had the foresight to spend a decent amount of time on this material. There are several dry one-liners from Mirren that are sprinkled throughout, several of which that actually made me laugh out loud a little bit. But their relationship is more than the laughs. The connection between the two genuinely feels like an Alfred/Batman type of relationship, or more appropriately any child of a rich family whose parents are too wrapped up in their careers to have time for their children. Itâ€™s a believable portrayal of a surrogate mother caring for the person she loves more than anyone else. So, this movie definitely has its moments, moments that I honestly didnâ€™t expect. There are other nice bits throughout the movie, also. The chemistry between Gerwig and Brand suits the film, as well, and provides some sweet moments in an overall predictable movie.
Why would someone who loves geek culture want to watch this movie? The movie memorabilia. In this film there are cameos from the Robin Costume from 1966â€™s Batman, Batman Foreverâ€™s Batsuit, Batman and Robinâ€™s lighted and ribbed Batmobile, Scooby Dooâ€™s The Mystery Machine, a Darth Vader Mask, The General Lee from Dukes of Hazard, Back to the Futureâ€™s DeLorean time machine (complete with Flux Capacitor), and many other hints and references throughout the movie.
All in all, itâ€™s not a great movie, but itâ€™s not the worst. If you or your significant other are a Russell Brand fan, give the movie a shot. His charm, the geek references, and the character moments between Arthur and the two most important women in his fictional life make the movie worth watching. But if you just canâ€™t stand Brandâ€™s humor, you should probably pass on this one.
Arthur Unsupervised: This misleadingly named feature shows us a behind the scenes look at the creation of the movie. Nothing really noteworthy or in depth, but it does have some short interviews with the cast about how much fun they had filming on the set. Isnâ€™t great hearing how much fun well paid actors had while filming a movie that paid them even more money? Itâ€™s the best!
Additional Footage: This aptly titled feature gives us some deleted scenes that were cut simply due to length and nonsense. One scene has Arthur astonished by a subway. He called it a horizontal roller coaster. Do you think a kid that rich never had any toy trains? Of course he had toy trains!
Gag Reel: Have you ever seen a gag reel feature before? Theyâ€™re really cool features where they take a bunch of funny parts from the movie and cut scenes, splice them together, and make what is ultimately an alternate trailer for the movie. It doesnâ€™t bring anything new to the table, but it does itâ€™s job if you want to laugh. You know, if youâ€™re in to that sort of thing. :::turns nose, walks away:::