Arlen Faber 2009

Critics score:
31 / 100

Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes

Ben Lyons, At the Movies: It almost felt like the characters weren't really reciting dialogue that came from them but rather just simply memorizing it off the script. Read more

A.O. Scott, New York Times: Never shows enough passion to be interestingly bad. Read more

Joanne Kaufman, Wall Street Journal: Its crackly sarcasm and smart talk turn out to be simply coating for a soft, icky, center. Read more

Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times: While The Answer Man has a meandering pace and ultimately goes precisely where you think it will, first-timer Hindman makes the journey pleasant among these literate and interesting folk. Read more

Nathan Rabin, AV Club: The Answer Man combines the worst of both worlds: It offers the ugly digital video, negligible production values, and manufactured grit of a Sundance loser with the pandering formula, sentiment, and romantic-comedy cliches of Hollywood pap. Read more

Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor: A promising premise and some very good actors are smothered in goo in The Answer Man. Read more

Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly: Arlen's salvation plays out with tender cloying predictability, though Lauren Graham, as the chiropractor who falls for him, has more spark than the movie deserves. Read more

Christy Lemire, Associated Press: The debut from writer-director John Hindman features a premise that sounds an awful lot like As Good As It Gets, except the script isn't as sharp. Read more

Glenn Whipp, Los Angeles Times: Daniels' Faber can be a curmudgeon one moment and a charmer the next, and it's hard to accept the notion that Graham's level-headed gal wouldn't instantly see through his act and show him the door. Read more

Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News: This two-bit echo of The Accidental Tourist is a preachy pill that wastes the genial, funny Jeff Daniels and the criminally underused Lauren Graham. Read more

Kyle Smith, New York Post: I could see the sparks flying, but they were being generated by my back teeth. Read more

Rex Reed, New York Observer: The improbable romance between the two stars is a stretch, but their chemistry is undeniable. Unfortunately, much of the film is too implausible to forgive. Read more

Carrie Rickey, Philadelphia Inquirer: Though his film is a tad choppy and a lot chatty, Hindman elicits sympathetic performances from leads who demonstrate a deep understanding of movie physics. Read more

James Berardinelli, ReelViews: The Answer Man is one of those modestly diverting motion pictures that's as sweet as cotton candy -- and as insubstantial. Read more

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times: How much more interesting is a film like (500) Days of Summer, which is about the complexities of life, in comparison with this one, which cheerfully cycles through the cliches. Read more

Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle: The Answer Man is a perfect example of an Intelligent Bad Movie, easy to take, promising along the way ... And then things start to go wrong. Read more

Ben Kenigsberg, Time Out: Read more

Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out: Read more

Claudia Puig, USA Today: The implausible Answer Man offers little clarity but plenty of far-fetched scenarios and credibility-defying coincidences. Read more

Ella Taylor, Village Voice: The laid-back charm of Daniels and Graham's bumpy courtship gives the movie a much-needed edge of idiosyncrasy. Read more