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The Answer Man (2009)
"Arlen Faber" (original title)

R  |   |  Comedy, Romance  |  30 December 2009 (France)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 5,361 users   Metascore: 44/100
Reviews: 26 user | 57 critic | 16 from Metacritic.com

A reclusive author of spiritual books, is pursued for advice by a single mother and a man fresh out of rehab.

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Title: The Answer Man (2009)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Mailman
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Ross
Greg Wood ...
Businessman #1
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Journalist
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Paul
Sally Mercer ...
Customer
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Storyline

Everyone wants to meet Arlen Faber, the world famous author of the best-selling spiritual book "Me and God", but crotchety, disgruntled Arlen simply wants to be left alone - and so far he's been successful in keeping his identity a secret. But all that changes when troubled bookstore owner Kris Lucas discovers his home address and barters books for Arlen's words of wisdom, and a back injury leads the reclusive writer to begin dating chiropractor and overprotective single mother Elizabeth. As Arlen's relationships with his newfound friends begin to grow, he must come to terms with his past and the realization that he doesn't hold all the answers. Written by The Massie Twins

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He wrote the book on life's big questions. But the truth is he hasn't got a clue.

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 December 2009 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Answer Man  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$12,998 (USA) (24 July 2009)

Gross:

$25,589 (USA) (7 August 2009)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The screenplay for this film was featured in the 2007 Blacklist; a list of the "most liked" unmade scripts of the year. See more »

Goofs

After Arlen puts the 45 record on, he jostles the stereo when he has his first back spasm. The needle clearly bounces off of the record but the music continues playing. After he falls to the floor, a close up of the record still playing is shown. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Arlen Faber: We would like to do a full exposé on Arlen Faber. It would coincide with the 20th anniversary release of Me and God. People want to read this story. I've read Me and God twelve times, for Christ's sake!
See more »

Connections

References A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

I Love You
Written by Bruce Connole
Performed by The Jetzons
Courtesy of Fervor Records, a division of Wild Whirled Music
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User Reviews

 
Not "As Good as it Gets"
27 July 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This movie tries really hard to be a repeat of "As Good as it Gets," but it comes up short. In fact, this movie is not as good as it gets and could have been a lot better. All of the pieces are there: sound cast, clever story line, good pacing. But the execution leaves a lot to be desired.

I always enjoy watching Daniels and even though this movie is way out of his norm to the point that it takes a minute to get used to seeing him in this character, he pretty much pulls it off. His romantic lead is also a good fit and their chemistry is pleasant. I appreciated the realistic nature of the courtship too ie they didn't jump in the sack at first glance which seems to be norm in most movies. Their courtship is cute, predictable at times, but not at others (like when she's shown to have taken his advice with his son and he's shown to have taken her advice with his hobby, although neither verbally address this.) In fact, I found each character in this movie rather appealing.

That said, there could have been more. Maybe the movie could have been longer or something, not sure, but something could have and should have been done to flesh out the characters more. We're only shown very surface level stuff even of the main character and that inhibits you from fully caring about the characters and fully buying into their individual stories.

I also found the ending somewhat unnerving. If the ultimate lesson is not supposed to be "God is not real," the filmmakers failed. If that is the lesson they tried to teach, the movie fails because the whole crux of the movie until the end is basically "lessons from God." Basically, the movie could have been more than just another Hollywood swipe at religion, but the ending makes it feel like that's what it was ultimately meant to be in which case you feel cheated for having watched the movie and invested in the story to whatever extent that was possible.

Verdict: Good movie to watch on TV like I did, but keep your expectations low or nonexistent.

6/10


3 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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