Intoxicated: The Remake

In Movie Reviews on April 11, 2011 at 6:28 am

I saw Arthur.

Cue disturbed looks, followed by a groan, concluding with, “Did you NOT see the original?”

When I respond with, “Of course I’ve seen the Dudley Moore version. It was AH-MAZING”…..I get an extremely confused reaction.

I admit it. I saw the remake of Arthur starring Russell Brand. And I loved it. So sue me.

I read every shitty review of the film before I went to see it, so I had to warn my poor mom of a couple things. (Arthur is mutually our favorite movie. Liza+Dudley=sheer frickin’ HEAVEN.)

I told my mom:

1) Don’t expect it to be an accurate remake.

2) Lets just have a good night out and get some laughs.

That was our expectation. To laugh. I’ve been in love with Russell Brand since Forgetting Sarah Marshall. I was going to enjoy this no matter how awful it was.

And it wasn’t awful. It was actually…

dare I say…

Awesome. At the end of the movie, my mom looked at me, and guiltily said, “I actually liked it better than the original.”

Cue YOU throwing your dinner at the computer screen/unsubscribing to my blog/yelling at me next time you see me in person.

Now, before I start this review that I’m nervous to write, let me make one thing clear.

I’m a huge fan of Dudley Moore’s performance in the original. He is spot on. Clever, lovable and down-right believable. Liza Minelli is like a piece of sunshine as she consistently brightens every scene she is in….and their chemistry is perfect. Its charming, warm and genuine. So with that said, here’s how I feel about the remake.

The remake didn’t feel like a remake. Brand in no way tried to imitate Moore, nor did Greta Gerwig attempt to imitate Liza. Naomi, (Arthur’s love interest played by Gerwig) is similar to Liza’s character (Linda). Naomi is a hard worker who takes care of her dad, but she’s NOT an aspiring actress who shoplifts to raise extra funds. She dreams of writing children’s books and she gives tours to families of NYC. While the newer version of the love interest has the same wonderful chemistry with Arthur, she pushes him a lot more in the remake to become a better person for his own benefit.

Russell Brand’s Arthur is still the lovable rich dude that we loved in the original…complete with his own set of mannerisms and oddities that still manage to win you over…but in a different way. He didn’t give you a carbon-copy of Dudley Moore. As a fan of the original, I know that I wouldn’t want to see that…and that’s not at all what he does. He adds a spontaneighty to his scenes…it was reminiscent of his screen-test for Forgetting Sarah Marshall.

3 other noticeably different changes from the original:

1) Hobson (Arthur’s Butler) went from being a dude played by John Gielgud…to a chick played by Helen Mirren. Embrace the change, people. Seriously. Gielgud might have worn an over-sized cowboy hat in the hospital scene…but Helen Mirren frickin’ wears a Darth Vader helmet. Epic.

2) Semi-Spoiler:

The character of Susan- Susan was a whiny pushover in the original…which is fine, but it practically forces her father to make an ass of himself by attacking Arthur with a knife in the end. The new Susan is a downright bitch. And it totally works. Because lets face it, we expect Nick Nolte to kick the shit out of Arthur in the remake…and he doesn’t have to. He just has to stand by and look threatening, and it works. Plus, he has a fantastically awkward moment lifting Brand onto a horse.

3) Bitterman (The driver) is in quite a few more scenes in the remake. And he is hilarious. The end.

Bottom-line. Go see the movie. Its funny. And instead of looking at it like, CRAP. They re-made something that was already good…

look at it this way. They remade a good story. They didn’t remake the movie. “Really rich guy risks losing his inheritance if he doesn’t marry a certain woman, when really he digs another chick.” They retold a good story in a modern way.

Plus, there are some ridiculously funny scenes.

Russell Brand goes to an auction and purchases the suit and hat that Lincoln wore to deliver the Gettysburg Address. So what does he do with it? Wears it of course. Wears it on the busy streets of NYC, then gets into trouble and the cops have to ask him for identification. Rather than pulling out a driver’s license, he pulls out…a penny. HYSTERICAL.

If you never saw the original, you’ll enjoy the movie. If you like Russell Brand, you’ll like the movie. The remake took the time to add its own flare. Its not an accurate remake of the original, and for that, I am grateful.

Here’s a little nugget that I was very grateful for…during the credits for the remake, they played, “Best that you can do”. AWESOME.

And if you haven’t seen it…go watch the original…its available on instant netflix.

  1. wow.. that was so cool, thanks for sharing it with us looking forward for more post of yours.. thanks!

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