The Movie: 7/10
I laughed. I even shed a tear. I laughed some more, however, I didn’t really LAUGH my ass off. Yes, that is a measure of a good time for me. People who know me will be saying that I must not have seen very many funny movies in my life…ba dum bum!!
I’ll be perfectly untemperedly honest and say I have a hard time talking about this new version of a story from a movie I have been in love with for over 25 years. Comparison is impossible to avoid, so deal with it. ARTHUR is Arthur with Dudley Moore and Liza Minelli from the early 80’s. Arthur is Arthur from 2011 with Jennifer Garner, Russell Brand, and Dame Helen Mirren. ARTHUR makes me laugh on every single line, every single scene, every word almost. Arthur made me laugh every few minutes, but not heartily. I liked it and it’s well worth watching just to enjoy the story again but with some different little tiny twists and turns here and there.
Arthur 2011 is more whacky and less dignified but sweeter. Russell Brand and Greta Gerwig are nice together but there is no convincing me that their little budding relationship is going anywhere. If they worked more at building that up a bit I might be more into it, but they are good together so it’s OK.
I really liked Jennifer Garner in this movie. She’s crazy and over the top and it made me have a new respect for her ability and willingness to just be out there in her roles. There was no holding back. When she’s magnetically stuck to a bed, I laughed for several minutes. She plays the asshole fiance of our billionaire who wants to rule the company. Her greed overrides her charm, but Arthur is seemingly trapped into marrying her….ohhhhh the suspense!!
Helen Mirren is awesome, of course, a hard core nanny of a bratty grown rich man, but funny too. She makes the movie for me. I do like Russell Brand though, he’s funny and there seems to be lots of heart behind his performance as the lost but determined rich boy/man.
It’s a good time. I will admit it. I wasn’t looking forward to it and in the first minute I was captured and interested and happy to be watching it. This after having watched ARTHUR just the night before and thoroughly enjoying myself for about the 125th time….now THAT’S a funny movie!! Genius. This modern version is good, not great, but good enough to find a place in my DVD collection for sure. I recommend it for a fun time.
- Arthur Unsupervised – Behind the scenes, sort of, in the making of Arthur 2011. It is pretty good with cast and crew chatting in that promotional kind of vibe.
- Gag Reel – Funny people giggling and props falling….OK, it’s fun!!
- Additional Scenes – I think these scenes could have easily been left in the movie and it would be fine. There doesn’t seem to be a reason to cut them except for time.
- DVD & Digital Copy – Take Arthur wherever you go. Laugh it up.
Cover Art and Menus: 4/10
The love interest of the story is left off the cover, which is unfair. The severe image is eye catching and it does capture the tone of the oppression of our billionaire hero:) I might be tempted to have it as a poster as long as I have my beloved original Arthur on a poster right next to it, and maybe bigger, higher up on the wall:) The menu is standard.
Audio & Video: 8/10 (By Ascully)
As usual Warner have a top notch transfer which is delivered in glorious 1080P to your HDTV. Arthur is a bright rich looking movie (figuratively and literally) and the extra colorspace the HD format allows really benefits the look of the movie. Actually having said that some other reviews I have read recently seem to believe the color in this movie is overcooked, I tend to disagree and think it was the cinematographers intent.
The DTS-HD Master Audio track as usual with comedy movies stays mostly central, surround speakers come alive during the batmobile chase and whenever music plays but that’s about it. Dialog is centered and anchored and even Nick Nolte’s mumbling vocal style comes through clear. Overall Arthur is fun and the Blu-Ray looks great but as usual with remakes the original is WAY better.
It’s a good crop of laughs and just a hint of extras so it’s well worth about 10 bucks if you can find it or rent it for big fun on the cheap. I do feel compelled to own it, so there ya go, I’ll pay the price hoping to find a good deal.
Overall Score 7/10