This film comes off the back of The Double
where Richard Gere played another not overly likable, yet powerful & driven character. Here in Arbitrage he plays Robert Miller, a successful hedge fund manager(i.e give him your money & he will try to get you more in return for a percentage himself) who is at the top of his game & idolized among his peers. However a recent investment backfired & now he must sell his company before anyone finds out that he lost investors money & borrowed money to plug the gap. However things go bad to worse for Robert, as he is implicated in manslaughter after his mistress is killed, and without a deal done it could finish his reputation & company off. Can he juggle all his problems around to keep out of jail & come out unscathed ?
Overall Arbitrage is nice little thriller that relies on the engaging story & character development, rather then action. Watching Richard Gere (Pretty Woman
) playing out this cool exterior while trying his best to cover up his dirty secrets was nothing short of brilliant. Going from cool & collected, to smug, calculating & intelligent. As the film went on & when all the cards were on the table of what Robert Miller was up against, it kept you on tender hooks to see whether this house of cards was going to crumble at any moment, as the people around him began to suspect, could the police prove what happened or could he rely on people to back him up ? You were never sure what the outcome was going to be & at times you couldn't help but love & hate Richard Gere's character, as we are awash with feelings of anger at some things he does & then joy when he figures out a loophole due to the nature of it.
The film is really owned by Richard Gere's performance, but the support cast of Susan Sarandon (Thelma and Louise
) as the long suffering wife, Tim Roth (Planet of the Apes
) as the police detective determined to nail his guy, Brit Marling (Another Earth
) as the nieve daughter brought down to earth with shocking realizations, Nate Parker (Great Debaters
) caught between a rock & a hard place, were all great. As well as experienced support in Stuart Margolin (Kelly's Heroes
) & Reg E. Cathey (The Wire
) adding gravitas to the wise heads who offer knowledge on the law side of things.
In conclusion, if you like a film which can keep you on tender hooks with it's story, and not need mile a minute action. Then this smart, enjoyable slow paced thriller will suit. Recommended.