- "He won't do it again"
- ―Arnie Cunningham
Arnold "Arnie" Cunningham is the school nerd in the novel Christine and its film adaption. He starts out as one of the novel three protagonists, but later becomes the secondary antagonist.
In the novel Arnie is Myopic and has only one friend Dennis Guilder. He notices Christine and urges Dennis to go back so he can look at it. After he wants to buy it, he hastily writes the car's then owner Roland D LeBay a check for the car. After his parents refuse to let him keep the car at the house he is forced to store it at a Do-It-Yourself garage run by Will Darnell and later the airport. Later he restores the car to its natural beauty but the more time he spends with Christine, the more she takes over his mind. Now obsessed with the car, his personality changes and he no longer wears his glasses as if his vision has improved greatly and he becomes humorless and arrogant but also assertive and cruel. After Leigh Cabot becomes his girlfriend Arnie gets into a fight with Buddy Repperton which results in Buddy's suspension. Later on when Buddy and his posse co-trash Christine, Arnie is shocked to discover all the hard work he put into restoring the car has been ruined and is determined to restore her back to normality. Later, he strains his back and starts wearing a Back Brace and later on Dennis and Arnie have an argument in which he goes against his own friends and in the process is killed in a motorway accident.
FilmIn the film, Arnie is played by Keith Gordon and purchases Christine from Roland D LeBay and is forced to keep it at the garage run by Will Darnell. Soon Dennis learns that LeBay's wife died in Christine of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning. Later on Arnie falls under Christine's influence and after Buddy and Co trash her he takes his anger out on Leigh Cabot. After his parents tell him they'll buy him a new car, he fights verbally and physically with his parents and even goes as far as to strangle his father and say fuck you. He swears revenge on the people who trashed Christine and is determined to repair her but she repairs herself in front of him. Arnie then goes against his friends and swears revenge on Buddyand his gang. Arnie is killed by when he is impaled on a shard of glass