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REVIEW: 'Arthur'

REVIEW: 'Arthur'

REVIEW: 'Arthur', Flicks.co.nz
Helen Mirren and Russell Brand

2 stars


An update of the 1981 film of the same name, starring rent-a-fop Russell Brand in the role that Dudley Moore made famous. Opens tomorrow (Thursday) nationwide. See here for movie times and watch the trailer.
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Arthur starts off genuinely funny. Russell Brand has some good lines and his character of a juvenile playboy fits him like a glove (I wonder why?). He also has Helen Mirren slumming it as a straight man to bounce his material off. If the rest of the film consisted of Russell Brand continuing to just be Russell Brand, it would have been a marked improvement.

Instead, the twin stories revolving around Arthur’s maturation and his love life kick in, both of which are problematic. We’re asked to get behind the growing up process, but it robs the lead character of his most comical personality traits and the laughs slowly but surely dry up. They’re replaced with a love story you’ve seen a thousand times before, which outside of one courtship scene is too bland and riddled with clichés to compete with the straight-out comedy that comes earlier.

All in all, Arthur is decent enough and there are much worse big screen comedies out there. It’s just depressing to watch something that starts out with so much promise but devolves into genre fodder.

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