Arthur the King - Overcoming Selfishness

Arthur the King - Overcoming Selfishness

Adventure racing is a team sport but Michael (Mark Wahlberg) has a bad habit of not listening to his team. It cost him the championship in 2015 and photographic evidence of his failure lives on with the help of Instagram.


Arthur the King, a new film from director Simon Cellan Jones, tells the true story of a group of adventure racers and the stray dog who becomes part of the team. If you love man-and his-dog stories, this one's for you.


In 2018 and getting older than most racers, Michael sees an opportunity for redemption, but he's got to grab it now or it will never happen. When potential sponsors lay down conditions for their financial support, Michael is forced to call on former teammate, Leo (Simu Liu), to join his new crew, but Leo's still angry that Michael lost the 2015 race for them.


Once Leo signs on, convincing their other two teammates to join the race isn't easy. Chik (Ali Suliman) is feeling his age, especially suffering with a bad knee and Olivia (Nathalie Emmanuel), daughter of a former teammate, needs lots of persuasion. Her dad's dying of cancer but her wants her to compete. Full team together, Michael and crew set out for the Dominican Republic where the race will take them close to 500 miles through a variety of terrains that force them to climb, kayak, night hike, run, and bike over the course of a five-day trek.



Simu Liu as Leo and Mark Wahlberg as Michael in "Arthur the King."  © 2024 Lionsgate Films. All Rights Reserved. 


Santo Domingo, known for the presence of stray animals, hosts the racers and when the team moves out, a stray dog decides to follow them. When Michael and his team notice the dog, they endear themselves to him with bits of their limited food supply. Amazed at how the dog has managed to follow them miles through the jungle, Michael accepts the stray as a member of the team, naming him Arthur because he has the heart of a king.




Ali Suliman, Mark Wahlberg, Nathalie Emmanuel, and Simu Liu in "Arthur the King."  © 2024 Lionsgate Films. All Rights Reserved. 



One of the wonderful things about this film is watching the transformation of Wahlberg's Michael from a self-absorbed, disgraced athlete to a real team player, who's more interested in the welfare of his teammates and their surprise mascot, than winning. Caring for Arthur seems to bring out the best in Michael, teaching him that trusting his teammates is more important than winning, although he's still desperate to be the first across the finish line.


Like other based-on-a-true-story sports films, Arthur the King, follows the usual path through adversity to the other side and is fairly predictable but the sweet mutt warms our hearts in this story fit for the whole family.






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