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Arthur Newman Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0

    out of 100

    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 40

    out of 100

    Village Voice Marsha McCreadie

    Fun for a bit, things soon turn silly.

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  • 40

    out of 100

    Variety Peter Debruge

    Firth and Blunt make a strange couple, and Ariola a musicvideo helmer making his feature debut, should have devoted more time to making the chemistry work than to sustaining the melancholy mood.

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  • 50

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    Arthur Newman is an old story and chronically, consistently uninvolving.

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  • 50

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Michael Phillips

    Much as I enjoy the actors I didn't buy a word or frame of Arthur Newman.

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  • 63

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Richard Roeper

    First-time feature director Dante Ariola (working from a script by Becky Johnson) has a good feel for these characters and keeps things moving along at a brisk pace.

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  • 67

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    The way Firth embodies the character, with a robot stare and a flat affect that expresses each thought as a kind of minimalist hologram of emotion, he's playing a cipher who pretends to be a different cipher. How indie-ironic!

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  • 70

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter John DeFore

    [A] sweet, semi-romantic road trip.

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 16+

Often-somber drama has language, sex, drinking.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Arthur Newman is an interesting but flawed film about a man who abandons his old life for a new identity, leaving behind a child. Despite some moments of levity, it's fairly somber, and the subject matter may be a little bleak for young teens and tweens. Still, the movie offers an interesting meditation on regrets and what we can make of them. Expect some scenes showing a couple in intimate poses and various states of undress (though no outright nudity), swearing ("s--t," "f--k," and more), some drinking and drug use (primarily weed), and a character who contemplates suicide.

  • Families can talk about Arthur Newman's messages. What do you think the intended takeaway is? How does the movie want viewers to feel at the end?
  • Discuss the characters and their choices. Are they believable/understandable? What do the characters learn?
  • How does the movie portray drinking, drug use, and sexuality?

The good stuff
  • message true2

    Messages: Most mistakes can be undone; running away doesn't erase them, and sooner or later, they'll catch up with you anyway. So why not get comfortable in your own skin?

  • rolemodels true2

    Role models: Arthur has some major flaws, and it takes him a while to find himself and atone for his mistakes, but at heart, he's a caring soul. And so is Michaela (aka Mike), though she's also seen stealing.

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence: A man contemplates suicide (viewers don't see anything gory, but it's implied). A man is shown dying after a seizure. A woman is shown screaming in a car.

  • sex false4

    Sex: A couple is shown in some intimate situations. Viewers don't see any sensitive nudity (a woman is seen in various states of undress but still clad in underwear), but the setups imply various sex positions. A brief scene shows a porn movie playing on TV in the background.

  • language false4

    Language: Language is strong but not constant; words include "f--k," "s--t," "bitch," and more.

  • consumerism false2

    Consumerism: Products/labels seen include Timex, Sabrett, Wells Fargo, Budweiser, and Polaroid.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Some scenes show a woman completely inebriated, and, later, drinking and smoking weed with a man.