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If you like Colin Firth (is there anyone who doesn’t?) you’ll probably want to see this one, but sadly it will leave you wanting.
It’s a story about a man going through a debilitating midlife crisis and the only option he views viable, is to turn away and adopt another life. He’s divorced, he’s in a nagging relationship and his son doesn’t want anything to do with him. So why not walk away and start fresh?
Ever thought of that? But do we actually take that step?
Well, Arthur does and before he’s even en route to what is another life as a golf pro, he bumps into Michaela or Mike (Emily Blunt) as she prefers to be called, who likes breaking into homes and sleeping in other people’s beds where she takes on their lives for a night.
Aaaahhh, I can hear you saying and if you do, you might enjoy it. Arthur Newman has a first-time director and it shows. It’s not that he’s bad, it’s just that the directing doesn’t connect with either the players or the script.
It’s quirky but there’s no point, and then you don’t engage with either the people or what they’re going through.
That’s when a movie of 100-odd minutes starts feeling long. Every once in a while something seemed to want to play out, like the rather peculiar relationship between Arthur’s former mistress and his obviously too young son. It kind of flags and is then dropped.
Blunt and Firth’s discrepancy in age we’re expected to take at face value. Perhaps that 20-year gap is just stretching it a bit much. Would a 30-year-old skip off so easily with a 50-year-plus stranger? He’s not bad looking but his age is starting to show.
She might be much more inclined to follow his lead or tag him along if he wasn’t so obviously going through this midlife crisis – something not part of her thirty-something mind. It’s all too pat with very little romantic zing between these two oddball characters.
Good idea perhaps, but in the execution any real chance at hitting the hearts of the audience is lampooned because of an attempt to be too artsy instead of following the content.
Even if the two actors play their hearts out, it doesn’t seem to have much to do with anything on the screen.
Nothing seems connected.