Extra cinema: Arbitrage (15)

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Director: Nicholas Jarecki

Starring: Richard Gere, Susan Sarandon, Brit Marling, Tim Roth, Laetitia Casta and Nate Parker.

Running time: 1hr 47mins.

RICHARD Gere seems an affable guy. Friendly in interviews and the follower of maybe the most inoffensive of religions: Buddhism.

But I’ve never been much of a fan of his acting – until now.

In Arbitrage, he plays a massively wealthy hedge fund magnate, Robert Miller, who seems to have it all — a beautiful wife (Sarandon) and an equally beautiful mistress.

But his latest deal, to sell off his business, is not going well and he’s been involved in some dodgy business deals leading up to this point.

One night, unable to sleep, he visits his mistress, Julie (Casta), and plans on taking her away for a short, romantic break.

Disaster strikes when, temporarily falling asleep at the wheel, he crashes his car and kills his mistress.

Hurt but able to move, he calls the son of a former employee, Jimmy (Parker), to get him away before the police show up and he has to explain himself.

But he hasn’t reckoned on tenacious detective Bryer (Roth) who is soon on his tail.

Tensions rise as Miller tries to escape justice while having to concede his illegal dealings to his daughter, Brooke (Marling).

It’s a step up for Gere who seemed to find his level with romantic comedies such as Pretty Woman and Runaway Bride.

I was unimpressed with his widower in The Mothman Prophecies, though thought the film was great.

But he has done his best work for many a year with Arbitrage and seems comfortable acting in the presence of the likes of Susan Sarandon and Tim Roth — both pedigree performers.

Rating: 4/5