You know summer is over when movies that are aimed at adults and considered favorites to win Oscar recognition start to open in Houston in rapid succession. That is the case now as Arbitrage opens Friday, followed next week by The Master.
You likely have been hearing a lot lately about The Master, Paul Thomas Anderson’s follow up to There Will Be Blood, which was nominated for eight Oscars in 2008 and won two – for cinematography and for Daniel Day-Lewis’ lead performance.
The Master won prizes for directing and acting at the Venice Film Festival over the weekend. It has benefited from a skillful campaign to generate buzz through a few well-timed pop-up screenings (including one Monday night in Austin) and the release of several enigmatic clips and video teasers.
The buzz on Arbitrage has centered almost entirely on Richard Gere’s lead performance. He plays a billionaire hedge fund manager who is desperate to hide his shady dealings, both in the financial and personal realms, even as a dogged detective closes in on him.
I missed the preview screenings, so I’m looking forward to catching up with Arbitrage after it opens, even though I can’t say that I was overly impressed by the trailer. It could use some judicious cutting. You’ll find it at the bottom of this post.
Arbitrage is the first feature from writer-director Nicholas Jarecki and much of it – at least from the trailer – feels familiar, either from other movies or from old headlines. Or it may just be that this is a time when the movie would have been better served by a trailer that teased more and showed less.
Nevertheless, Gere looks great in it. And the other stars, which include Susan Sarandon, Tim Roth, Brit Marling, Laetitia Casta and Nate Parker, don’ t look like they’re phoning in their performances either.