Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 35
  2. Negative: 1 out of 35
  1. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Sep 13, 2012
    80
    Surprisingly entertaining, probably because it uses Wall Street shenanigans and schadenfreude as the backdrop to a crime drama.
  2. Reviewed by: Marjorie Baumgarten
    Sep 13, 2012
    67
    There's a touch of Hitchcockian flavor to the Arbitrage's cat-and-mouse thrills, yet the film clearly announces that there's now a third gifted Jarecki brother (in addition to Eugene and Andrew) to contend with in the moviemaking business.
  3. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Sep 13, 2012
    63
    Arbitrage is a breezy watch, with good performances that don't cut very deep and an eye for décor but little interest in what it's decorating. What's missing, really, is outrage, or a sense of the 99 percent.
  4. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Sep 12, 2012
    100
    Hitchcock called his most familiar subject "The Innocent Man Wrongly Accused." Jarecki pumps up the pressure here by giving us a Guilty Man Accurately Accused, and that's what makes the film so ingeniously involving.
  5. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Sep 13, 2012
    75
    Part "Law & Order" morality play, part "Wall Street" with a dash of the more recent and topically pertinent "Margin Call," Arbitrage hums along, complicating its narrative without tying itself in knots.
  6. Reviewed by: Owen Gleiberman
    Sep 5, 2012
    91
    The film doesn't turn its issues into a glorified essay, but it does use them to give the audience a vital emotional workout.
  7. Reviewed by: Betsy Sharkey
    Sep 13, 2012
    80
    Writer-director Nicholas Jarecki squarely lands that punch, creating a tense and chilling horror story for financially fraught times.
  8. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Sep 13, 2012
    63
    Even at his worst - and Robert does some awful things - the actor almost makes you root for him, hoping he'll get away with it.
  9. Reviewed by: Amy Nicholson
    Sep 13, 2012
    60
    Gere does his best to give Arbitrage an agitated energy, but Jarecki's fatalism works against the film.
  10. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Sep 13, 2012
    60
    Though it teeters at times on the edge between potboiler and melodrama, Arbitrage benefits from a notable lack of sympathy for Gere's Gordon Gekko-like Miller. Rather than seeming pat, Jarecki's straightforward cynicism is pointed and purposeful.
  11. Reviewed by: Bilge Ebiri
    Sep 13, 2012
    90
    Jarecki puts the veteran actor to brilliant use in the insanely gripping Arbitrage.
  12. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Sep 13, 2012
    50
    Every episode of "Law & Order" I've ever seen has a more complicated and plausible plot, punchier dialogue and more New York authenticity, all in less than half the time consumed by this poky would-be finance thriller.
  13. Reviewed by: Jeannette Catsoulis
    Sep 14, 2012
    80
    Unfolding in somber tones and among hard surfaces, Arbitrage has the slickness of new bank notes and the confidence of expensive tailoring.
  14. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    Sep 13, 2012
    75
    In the end, Arbitrage disappoints a bit. The writing isn't as sharp, or sophisticated, as it needs be. And the cynicism exhibited by Miller and the circle of traders and tycoons he moves in seeps into the fabric of the story itself.
  15. Reviewed by: Shawn Levy
    Sep 13, 2012
    75
    More seriously, Jarecki never quite pierces the skin of this world, capturing its shiny and grimy surfaces but failing to immerse us in its flaws; too often it's like flipping through a magazine story on the lives of the rich and corrupt.
  16. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Sep 16, 2012
    75
    Arbitrage is actually a fairly straightforward thriller in the John Grisham vein. It doesn't demand that the viewer know the difference between a hedge fund and a hedgehog. Arbitrage also reminds us that thrillers do not have to be action-packed to generate tension.
  17. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Sep 13, 2012
    88
    It's instructive to note what a killer actor Richard Gere can be when a movie rises to his level. Arbitrage is such a movie, a sinfully entertaining look at the sins committed in the name of money.
  18. Reviewed by: Amy Biancolli
    Sep 13, 2012
    25
    Features an exceedingly dapper Richard Gere in a series of nice suits and handsome close-ups that serve no purpose other than to remind us how exceedingly dapper Richard Gere looks in nice suits and handsome close-ups. The rest of the movie registers as a loss of: time, money, talent and logic.
  19. Reviewed by: Glenn Heath Jr.
    Sep 9, 2012
    75
    If the film covers well-tread territory (a morally bankrupt player trying to prolong his own influence), it does so with pinpoint control of mood and theme.
  20. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Sep 13, 2012
    75
    Arbitrage is never the nail-biting thriller that it could have been.
  21. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Sep 12, 2012
    83
    Arbitrage is a classy soap opera with a charismatic louse at its center, without "Margin Call" didactics, or the misplaced empathy of "The Company Men."
  22. Reviewed by: Noel Murray
    Sep 12, 2012
    75
    Between Gere matching wits with a police detective played by Tim Roth, and Gere having to explain himself to the steely Sarandon, Arbitrage is never dull.
  23. Reviewed by: Geoff Pevere
    Sep 28, 2012
    75
    As many of the most memorable and darker thrillers have, Arbitrage plays with affinities in order to completely confuse the drawing of any clear lines between good and evil, criminal and executive, skilled pro and callous cad.
  24. Reviewed by: David Cox
    Mar 2, 2013
    80
    You've seen it all before, but lead Richard Gere drenches the proceedings in the old razzle-dazzle.
  25. Reviewed by: John DeFore
    Sep 5, 2012
    80
    Nothing about the plot is novel, but the film easily maintains a low simmer that picks up in the final act, as Miller has to fight to keep his sinking ship staffed.
  26. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Sep 13, 2012
    50
    Instead of digging into the psychology and morality of greed, Mr. Jarecki only glances and lectures in that direction before piling on a lot of melodramatic complications, including a death, an investigation and a cynical detective (Tim Roth). These days, it seems, the illegal manipulation of hundreds of millions of dollars simply isn't enough to incite moral outrage.
  27. Reviewed by: David Denby
    Sep 19, 2012
    80
    Part thriller, part character study, Arbitrage is Nicholas Jarecki's first feature, and it moves swiftly and confidently, with many details that feel exactly right. [24 Sept. 2012, p.98]
  28. Reviewed by: Mary Pols
    Sep 13, 2012
    80
    Gere is being talked about as an Oscar contender - he's never been nominated. January is a long time off yet, but his name is certainly worth putting on the long list.
  29. Reviewed by: Joshua Rothkopf
    Sep 11, 2012
    80
    Amazingly, Gere keeps it all together, via a kind of seething anti-rage that speaks reams to the character's survival instincts.
  30. Reviewed by: Neil Smith
    Feb 22, 2013
    60
    As much as Nicholas Jarecki’s debut feature simmers, it never quite boils.
  31. Reviewed by: Scott Bowles
    Sep 13, 2012
    75
    Despite an abrupt ending and the worst title of the year, Arbitrage manages to leverage real tension from its veteran stars in one of Hollywood's first pedigreed films of the fall.
  32. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Sep 5, 2012
    80
    Between this cast and the conviction Jarecki brings to the table, the film feels incredibly accomplished for a first feature.
  33. Reviewed by: Michael Atkinson
    Sep 11, 2012
    80
    Slick and grown-up as Richard Gere himself, this intricate fiscal thriller takes a dead bead on extreme privilege.
  34. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Sep 13, 2012
    80
    "Just One More Chance," Billie Holiday implores on the soundtrack. The nice paradox of Arbitrage is that we're interested to see whether Robert gets one, even though he's the villain-in-chief of a suspense thriller whose plot turns on generalized scurrilousness. That's a tribute to Mr. Jarecki's smart writing, and to the take-no-prisoners performance of Mr. Gere.
  35. Reviewed by: Ann Hornaday
    Sep 13, 2012
    75
    There are few cinematic pleasures as satisfying to behold as an actor in a role that fits him like a Savile Row suit. Richard Gere offers just such gratification in Arbitrage, a silky, sophisticated Wall Street thriller that finds the actor utterly in his prime, wearing his age and accumulated emotional wisdom with warmth, charisma and nonstop appeal.
User Score
7.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 67 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 28
  2. Negative: 3 out of 28
  1. Dec 3, 2012
    6
    On the positive side, this film has strong acting, stylish directing, impeccable production values. The individual scenes are very well written and the dialog is crisp and authentic. On the negative side, Richard Gere's character has no redeeming value and is hard to embrace as an audience member. He is a man without a shred of moral duty or a sense of right and wrong. So it's difficult to become invested in a character who is so utterly repugnant. He could very well be accurately drawn, but so could a well crafted oil painting of a maggot. Full Review »
  2. Lyn
    Jan 5, 2013
    3
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. What a disappointment! Considering the cast -- and the start of the film -- I was expecting a smart, edgy tale of corrupt financiers gone amok in the Big Apple. What I got was yet another melodrama about a middle-aged slickster whose affair with a younger woman takes a tragic turn, and his machinations to avoid the consequences. It's been done better by everyone from Adrian Lyne to Woody Allen. Actually, it's been done better on TV series like "Damages." Full Review »
  3. Dec 13, 2012
    6
    What we have here is Richard Gere being cool and looking stylish is expensive suits. The plot is awfully mundane- and frustratingly morally ambiguous, but the actors are very good here- and more importantly Arbitrage is believable. It doesn't feel like watching a movie. Full Review »