Nicholas Jarecki's Arbitrage revolves around a problematic life phase of a billionaire named Robert Miller (Richard Gere). It’s his sixtieth birthday and he’s celebrating it at home. You see him as a family man who intends to spend the rest of his life with them even if it means selling off his company. This is just the version of himself that he’s selling to his family.
He heads back to his office. But instead, lands up at the mansion of a young lady who ignores him to build the sexual tension before they pounce on each other with a strong sense of urgency. Cut to Miller walking through his multi-storey office, straight-faced and satisfied. He no longer looks like the family man he sold to you at the table. He looks like the alpha male of the wolf pack that was out to rip apart Liam Neeson in The Grey.
We see that there are enough problems in Miller’s life. He has marital issues that he refuses to acknowledge and his business is nearly on the rocks. To make things worse, he and his mistress meet with a terrible accident while driving away from their problems. She dies. He burns up the car, makes a phone call and is driven back home by a young boy. Enter Bryer (Tim Roth), a real griller of a cop and Miller’s got his work cut out for him. His daughter Brooke (Brit Marling), proud to be working under her father, slowly begins to realize that he’s cooked his company books. And his wife (Susan Sarandon) refuses to talk with the cops for unknown reasons.
Gere is simply fabulous here and is certainly worthy of an Oscar nomination but at this point, it seems like a long shot. Like Pitt’s Cogan in Killing them Softly, Miller is also a thinking man who has the ability to put aside his feelings. There’s no time for him to worry, contemplate or stay conflicted. He thinks. He acts. When things look bad, he bites the bullet and sinks into his bed deciding to pay. Then he gets a brainwave. It’s only a blink you see on Gere’s face but you know that the tables have turned. Arbitrage is sleek, savvy and constantly on the move.