Arthur Newman

2013

Arthur Newman (2013)

TOMATOMETER

Critic Consensus: Despite the natural charisma of its leads, Arthur Newman does little with its intriguing setup, and the result is bland and unconvincing.

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Wallace Avery (Colin Firth) is tired of his existence. Divorced, disconnected from his young son, dissatisfied with his love life, depressed and in the doldrums of middle age, he decides to make a radical change by walking away from his old life. He buys a new identity and hits the road as Arthur Newman to begin life anew, bound for Terre Haute, Indiana, where he dreams of reinventing himself as a golf pro at a tiny country club. But his road trip is derailed by the entrance of Michaela "Mike" Fitzgerald (Emily Blunt), whom Arthur discovers passed out poolside at a seedy roadside motel. Mike sees through Arthur's identity scam, and soon enough Arthur sees through hers - she's a kleptomaniac fleeing from domestic turmoil of her own. Soon romance blossoms on the road to Indiana as the unexpected couple infiltrates the lives of random strangers as a way of better grasping the essence of their own waylaid lives. Painful secrets unfold; new lives take shape. But is it possible to truly start all over again? A cross-country odyssey of self-discovery and renewal, ARTHUR NEWMAN is a gently comic screen romance about two unlikely souls who fall in love and find a way to accept responsibility for who they really are. (c) Cinedigm

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Critic Reviews for Arthur Newman

All Critics (49) | Top Critics (16)

An offbeat, sometimes self-congratulatory road movie romance.

Apr 26, 2013 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…

They embark on one of those maundering, life-lessony odysseys that filmmakers love but audiences rarely do.

Apr 26, 2013 | Rating: C- | Full Review…

One of those many indies that exist to give actors a chance to go slumming.

Apr 26, 2013 | Rating: 1/4 | Full Review…

Well-acted but ultimately unmemorable ...

Apr 26, 2013 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

The film equivalent of a dysfunctional computer sloppily assembled from discarded parts of other machines.

Apr 25, 2013 | Rating: 2/5

The promise it begins with doesn't pay off. And while "Arthur Newman" is not a complete disaster, it does leave you wishing the romance and the ride had been a whole lot smoother.

Apr 25, 2013 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Arthur Newman

½

Wallace Avery(Colin Firth) is a middle-aged manager of a box store. He is divorced from Mary Alice(Kristin Lehman, of "Motive). Together they have a teenaged son, Grant(Sterling Beaumon). Wallace is also carrying on a non-passionate affair with Mina(Anne Heche). Together, that is not enough for him. So, he fakes his own death and takes up the nom-du-renaissance of Arthur Newman, trying to keep a low profile on his way to a career as a golf pro. However, that changes when he runs into Mike(Emily Blunt) who seems familiar. "Arthur Newman" is a pleasant surprise, especially as it favors nuance over any kind of cringe factor in its character study of two truly dysfunctional, yet not hopeless, people. Some of that has to do with the movie's tone which honestly does not avoid the darkness in its premise. But most of it has to do with Colin Firth who is excellent in finding the humanity in such an otherwise lost character.

Walter M.
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

This got off to a slow start...painfully slow. If it ever picked up I don't know cause I bailed.

Bathsheba Monk
Bathsheba Monk

Super Reviewer

½

An interesting film, with two of my favorite actors. Rather slow at times. I put off watching this movie due to the bad reviews, and listless quality of the trailer. I liked it better than I thought I would, though. A halfway decent, quiet afternoon movie, with a nice ending to it all...

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

If you don't have a life, get someone else's. Good Film! This is both a downer movie with two unhappy leads trying to survive their lives and a feel-good movie about people who find something in each other to survive. It's not quite a romance that develops, but there is a kind of loving co-dependence. It's meant to be deeper and more moving than it is mostly a issue of the writing again but you get the drift and it works overall. In the end, at the end, you wish so much it had been more than it was. It has so many interesting qualities that don't get pulled out, the surprising convergence in the plot, the game of taking on identities, the psychological depth of being who you are and accepting that. I felt let down by what did happen. The solutions are a bit obvious and almost cheap, depending on formulas seen before. Which is too bad because the set-up and the actors are worth more than that. Wallace Avery hates his job. His ex-wife and son hate him, and he's blown his one shot at living his dream. Not wanting to face all this, he stages his own death and buys himself a new identity as Arthur Newman. However, Arthur's road trip towards anew life is interrupted by the arrival of the beautiful but fragile Mike, who is also trying to leave her past behind. Drawn to one another, these two damaged souls begin to connect as they break into empty homes and take on the identities of the absent owners: elderly newlyweds, a high-roller and his Russian lady, among others. Through this process, Arthur and Mike discover that what they love most about each other are the identities they left at home, and their real journey, that of healing, begins.

Manu Gino
Manu Gino

Super Reviewer

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