Arthur Newman is one of those films that leave the audience with more questions than answers. Questions like: Where'd that bag of cash come from? Can you really drive all the way from Florida to Indiana entirely on side streets? And did Emily Blunt and Colin Firth actually bother to read the script before signing on to do this incredibly dull, pointless, and contrived film?
Wallace Avery (Firth), a bored and boring middle manager, decides to escape his disappointing life by faking his own death and assuming the identity of Arthur Newman (get it?), a bored and boring golf pro. But on the way to a new life at a small golf course in Terre Haute, Indiana, fate throws him together with the beautiful but troubled Charlotte (Blunt), also living under an assumed identity. The result is a meandering road movie in which these two thinly drawn characters act sullen between breaking into strangers' houses to have sex. Everything about their adventure is predictable, except for the parts that inexplicably are not. Arthur Newman has the look and feel of a thoughtful, quirky indie film that keeps you waiting for the epiphanous twist that'll make the director (Dante Ariola) look like a genius. It never comes.