|“||I told you about how things were gonna go, you like the way things are going now?!||„|
|~ Arno most famous quote.|
|“||You think I'm stupid Howard, you and your whole f***ing family! I heard you resurfaced your f***ing swimming pool, you know how that makes me feel?! You think your life is more important than my life?||„|
|~ Arno threatening Howard.|
|“||You're taking MY money all over town placing bets!||„|
|~ Arno to Howard.|
Arno Moradian, most commonly known just as Arno is the main antagonist of the 2019 American crime thriller film, Uncut Gems. He is a New York Jewish loan shark and the brother-in-law of protagonist anti-hero, Howard Ratner, who owns money to him. He is also the boss of goons Phil and Nico.
Sometime before the events of Uncut Gems, Arno marries Howard Ratner's sister-in-law. Arno later loans Howard $100,000 for an unstated purpose (possibly so that Howard could buy the Ethiopian opal), and Howard refuses to pay for a significant amount of time. Feeling no other options, Arno enlists the help of some enforcers, namely Phil and Nico, to help him "encourage" Howard to pay off his loan in any way, even force if necessary.
May 16, 2012
Arno sends Phil over to Howard's store, KMH Jewelry. He slaps Howard when offered water and then gives Howard a death threat before leaving the store. Howard, after trading an Ethiopian gem to NBA star Kevin Garnett for his championship ring, pawns it off to get cash for Garnett's game, planning to buy back the ring with the winnings, unaware that he's being followed by Phil and Nico. He sends Arno a picture of the money before betting it on Garnett.
Howard wins the bet, but his employee, Demany, tells him that Kevin wishes to keep the opal longer. That night Howard is ambushed at his daughter's school play by Phil and Nico who take him to Arno. Howard tries to explain his bet plan but Arno informs him he placed a stop on the bet as it was made with the money he owed him. Phil and Nico then strip Howard naked and trap him on the trunk of his own car, then leave. Howard is rescued by his wife, Dinah.
Howard's family have a Passover dinner, a Jewish holiday, where Howard brags to his father-in-law, Gooey, about the opal's value at the auction. Arno watches Howard silently during the entire dinner.
May 26, 2012
Howard takes the opal to the auction house but he discovers it has been appraised at $150,000. Howard, desperate, convinces Gooey to bid on the gem to drive up the price, as Garnett is going to be on the auction and Howard is sure, he'll get the gem no matter the cost. However this plans backfires when at $200,000, Garnett bows out and Gooey wins. Gooey, mad at Howard, gives him the opal to sell it. Howard then notices Arno was also at the auction and he meets him outside the building with Phil and Nico. Howard pretends to speak to Kevin on the phone which just angers Arno even more, when Howard insists on explaining to him, Phil and Nico punch him on the face and throw him to a fountain. Howard, battered and humiliated, returns to his shop and has an emotional breakdown, Julia comforts him and they repair their relationship. Howard receives a call from Garnett's assistant informing him that he still wants the opal for $175,000, Howard with new hope, retrieves the ring by exchanging it for his own Knicks championship ring.
Howard speaks with Garnett and completes the deal, in that moment, Arno and his goons arrive to the shop, Howard becomes obsessed with betting Garnett's pay for the opal on him as he feels a connection between him and the gem, he gives the money to Julia without Arno and his men noticing and tells her to go to the Mohegan Casino and bet it all on Garnett's game that night. Julia barely escapes from Arno. When Arno learns from Howard's bet he becomes absolutely infuriated, given Howard's constant bragging and provocations. Phil also becomes even more infuriated and he and Nico take Howard to a window and hang him from the legs, ordering him to call Julia to tell her to return to the shop, Arno tries to talk them out of doing it as he thinks they're going too far. Howard agrees but backs down, tired of the situation, and they try to pursue Julia. Before they get of the store, Howard locks them in the shop's mantrap, making them unable to leave. Half of the goons escape and Arno and Phil order them to go find Julia at the casino. Phil pulls a gun on Howard from behind the bulletproof glass but Arno prevents him from shooting, then Phil makes a phone call. Howard, fearing from his kids, calls Dinah and tells her to leave the house.
Howard then watches the game with Arno and his muscle locked up in the mantrap. Against all odds, Howard wins the bet and celebrates, Arno is amused by this, however Phil just wants to leave. Howard releases Arno, Phil, and Nico, but an angry Phil approaches Howard and shoots him in the face, killing him instantly. Arno, horrified, protests but is menaced at gunpoint by Phil. Arno tries to escape but Phil, fed up with his former boss' incompetence, shoots him in the head, then alongside Nico, they steal as much as they can from the shop. Meanwhile Dinah, concerned that Howard is in danger due to the recent events, calls the police on the shop. Julia leaves the casino with the money and prepares to return to Howard, unaware of his death. Phil and Nico continue to rob the store, police sirens blaring in the distance.
- The character Arno is an Armenian-American who married into Howard's Jewish family. He is named after Arno Babadzhanyan, the great Armenian-Soviet composer.
- According to his Bogosian, he's not Jewish by birth, but an Armenian-American who married into the family.
- Besides being related to him through marriage, it becomes clear that Arno doesn't actually want to see Howard get hurt, trying—and failing—to keep his bodyguards from resorting to violence. When Phil ultimately snaps and shoots Howard, Arno is genuinely horrified.