6.9/10
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116 user 41 critic

Arthur (1981)

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Arthur is a happy drunk with no pretensions at any ambition. He is also the heir to a vast fortune which he is told will only be his if he marries Susan. He does not love Susan, but she ... See full summary »

Director:

Steve Gordon

Writer:

Steve Gordon
Won 2 Oscars. Another 9 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dudley Moore ... Arthur Bach
Liza Minnelli ... Linda Marolla
John Gielgud ... Hobson
Geraldine Fitzgerald ... Martha Bach
Jill Eikenberry ... Susan Johnson
Stephen Elliott Stephen Elliott ... Burt Johnson
Ted Ross ... Bitterman
Barney Martin ... Ralph Marolla
Thomas Barbour Thomas Barbour ... Stanford Bach
Anne De Salvo ... Gloria
Marjorie Barnes Marjorie Barnes ... Hooker
Dillon Evans Dillon Evans ... Plaza Maitre D'
Maurice Copeland Maurice Copeland ... Uncle Peter
Justine Johnston Justine Johnston ... Aunt Pearl
Paul Vincent Paul Vincent ... Plaza Waiter
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Storyline

Arthur is a happy drunk with no pretensions at any ambition. He is also the heir to a vast fortune which he is told will only be his if he marries Susan. He does not love Susan, but she will make something of him the family expects. Arthur proposes but then meets a girl with no money, with whom he could easily fall in love. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

I race cars, I play tennis, I fondle women, but I have weekends off and I am my own boss! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 July 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Arturo, el millonario seductor See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,719,534, 19 July 1981, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$95,461,682
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jeff Bridges, Chevy Chase, Steve Martin, Bill Murray, Jack Nicholson, Sylvester Stallone, and Robin Williams were all considered for the lead role of Arthur. See more »

Goofs

The length of Arthur's hair changes back and forth throughout the final scenes. See more »

Quotes

Hobson: Poor drunks do not find love, Arthur. Poor drunks have very few teeth, they urinate outdoors, they freeze to death in summer. I can't bear to think of you that way.
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Connections

Referenced in Tales from the Warner Bros. Lot (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Blue Moon
Written by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart
Performed by Dudley Moore
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Still a Charmer a Quarter Century Later Especially for the Well-Missed Talents of Moore and Gielgud
1 August 2006 | by EUyeshimaSee all my reviews

This 1981 comedy still sparkles thanks to the combined efforts of writer/director Steve Gordon and stars Dudley Moore and John Gielgud. Sadly, Gordon, only in his early forties, died soon after completing this, his only feature film. It's an especially unfortunate loss since he shows a truly deft hand at character-driven farce that makes the whole film irresistible. It plays almost like a 1930's-style screwball comedy revamped for contemporary tastes. The plot centers on Arthur Bach, a drunken, diminutive millionaire playboy who is at risk of losing his $750 million inheritance if he doesn't marry the dowdy and boring Susan Johnson, an heiress handpicked by his old-money father and dotty grandmother. Of course, he doesn't love her and by chance, runs into Linda Marolla, a working-class waitress (and of course, aspiring actress) after she pilfers a Bergdorf Goodman tie for her father.

The standard complications ensue but in a most endearing way with loads of alcohol-fueled slapstick executed with classic élan by Moore. That he makes such a spoiled character likable is a credit not only to his comic talents but to Gielgud's feisty, acidic turn as Hobson, Arthur's devoted but reality-grounded valet. It's the type of role he could play in his sleep, but Gielgud makes Hobson such a truly memorable character that his fate in the film brings a welcome injection of poignancy in the proceedings. In probably her most likable film role, Liza Minnelli hands the picture to her male co-stars by toning down her usual razzle-dazzle personality and making Linda quite genuine in motivation.

A pre-"LA Law" Jill Eikenberry plays Susan just at the right passive-aggressive note, while Barney Martin (Jerry's dad on "Seinfeld") steals all his scenes as Linda's slovenly father Ralph. The one fly in the ointment is veteran actress Geraldine Fitzgerald, who overdoes the eccentricities of the grandmother. And I have to admit that I still can't stand the very dated, overplayed Christopher Cross song that inevitably won the Oscar for that year's best song. Unfortunately, the 1997 DVD, certainly in need of remastering, has no extras worth noting except some photos and production notes.


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