Tuesday, 3 May 2011

142: Review - Arthur

CAUTION: Yen's blog contains harsh language and even harsher notions of propriety. Reader discretion is advised.

02 May 2011. Location: Cinema

Before we start: I haven't seen the original Dudley Moore movie, so I won't (indeed, can't) compare it to that. It has to be said, in fact, that I never really got Moore in anything of his I saw, so the thoughts of many that this remake is sacrilege aren't shared by myself. *ahem*

I don't care what anyone says, I really enjoyed this. The role is perfect for Brand (and he should certainly play in the sun now, because his chirpy/drunken act will become as tiresome as Jack Sparrow, given time), and he has great fun here as an overgrown child.

Sure, it's formulaic; Sure, you know the first time Greta Gerwig appears on-screen what the connection will be; Sure, you know that Jennifer Garner's character is deeply flawed (she's got to be careful with that. After The Invention of Lying and now this, I'm starting to believe she's really that unpleasant); Sure, you know that Helen Mirren will almost steal the show as she's proving more and more that she has great deadpan comic timing (see also, Red).

Each cast-member is perfectly placed here, and the dynamics really work for me. It's true that the whole thing seems like a cinematic jigsaw, with each raised-eyebrow, each gag, each longing-look and each emotional build-up carefully placed to elicit the right response from an audience. But most cinema is formulaic these days, and when it works this well, who cares? This is every bit as contrived as the 80's romcom genre it was spawned from, and deserves its place amongst those films. In fact, that's the difference for me; it's a romcom in the 80's mould, not the 00's one. This is its strength.

If you don't like Russell Brand, you won't like this, but you knew that already.

If you want an actually heartwarming comedy that isn't as soulless as the latest Aniston/Heigl vehicle, give this a whirl.


• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.

• This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here represent my own thoughts (at the time of writing) and not those of the people, institutions or organizations that I may or may not be related with unless stated explicitly.

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