ARLINGTON ROAD

Content:

Pagan worldview with anti-patriotic elements & subtle Christian bashing; 3 obscenities & 8 profanities; moderate violence including fistfights, death threats, gun battle with multiple fatalities, & somewhat intense car chase; implied fornication (scene of unmarried couple in bed & man discusses his girlfriend's overnight stay with 10-year-old son); no nudity; alcohol use; and miscellaneous immorality including lying (by both villain & hero) & deceit (both villain & hero).

Summary:

ARLINGTON ROAD has a promising-sounding premise: an American history professor at George Washington University suspects that his neighbor, William Fenimore, is a domestic, right-wing terrorist. The film features a stellar cast, but this disappointing, mostly predictable Hollywood thriller fails to thrill. With some violence, anti-Christian and anti-patriotic elements, only its beginning and ending are the least bit interesting.

Review:

ARLINGTON ROAD has a promising-sounding premise: an American history professor at George Washington University suspects that his neighbor is a domestic, right-wing terrorist. The film features a stellar cast, but this disappointing, predictable Hollywood thriller fails to thrill. Professor Michael Faraday (played by Jeff Bridges) suspects that his neighbor may have had a hand in the recent bombing of a federal building. When Faraday tries to convey his suspicions to his girlfriend and then to a friend at the FBI, his claims are greeted with skepticism, resulting in terror.
ARLINGTON ROAD traces Faraday’s efforts to unravel the apparent double life of his neighbor. The concept is interesting and might have worked with a more complex screenplay, but the professor’s discoveries are predictable and facile. His findings are so easily won that it stretches the imagination too far. Furthermore, Bridges is unconvincing and annoying as the over-earnest, left-leaning professor. ARLINGTON ROAD also contains a Hollywood tradition of subtly slurring Christians and perpetuating the tired, “right-wing religious nut” stereotype embodying all too many movie villains these days. With some violence, and anti-Christian and anti-patriotic elements, only its beginning and ending are the least bit interesting.

In Brief: