The Truth About Charlie

2002

Mystery / Thriller

3
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 34%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 27%
IMDb Rating 4.8 10 9082

Synopsis


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891.52 MB
1280*544
English
PG-13
23.976 fps
1hr 44 min
P/S 18 / 43
1.67 GB
1920*816
English
PG-13
23.976 fps
1hr 44 min
P/S 9 / 48

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Michael Morad-McCoy (mmckaibab) 1 / 10

Jonathan, how could you?

I really wanted to like this movie. Jonathan Demme is one of my favorite film makers and I thought if anyone could remake one of my favorite movies of all time, Demme could. Demme couldn't.

Newton and Robbins are ok, Wahlberg doesn't work at all, and the other "evil" characters who were so memorable in Charade come across as interchangeable cyphers.

I usually like Demme's music selection, but here there didn't seem to be any sort of unifying theme behind his music. And, it certainly wasn't Mancini's wonderful score.

But the biggest Truth about Charlie is that Demme's rewrite is simply awful.

In the original, Charlie is a nobody and so he doesn't get in the way of all the other characters. Here he has a face and is, apparently, the big villain, so we have to be treated to a slew of foggy flashbacks that halt the flow of the story.

Newton and Wahlberg lip-lock so early, there's absolutely none of the playful sexual tension of the original. And, instead of Grant's cocky, end-of-the-film surprise, we get a bathetic Wahlberg begging Newton to forgive him. Bleacch.

The reworking of the story that sets everything in motion is so muddled I'm still not sure just exactly what was happening and why.

And the final big thing missing is the element of wonderful surprise Donen crafted so well. In the original Grant's multiple characters are peeled back with delicious surprise at each new revelation ending with the final, perfect surprise at the end of the film. And the moment when the original film reveals the big secret is still thrilling, even after watching it a dozen times. In Charlie, the big secret becomes a tiny flicker of something in Newton's eyes and when it is finally revealed, it's a moment that the word "anticlimax" was designed for.

It's such a shame that Demme made such a muddle of something that originally was so clean and clearly presented. As so many others have done, I strongly recommend you skip this one and just go back to the original.

Reviewed by ccthemovieman-1 4 / 10

There Was No Point In Making This

This was strange. I had no idea what this film was about as it was a free loan and I just put in the machine, not even reading the back of the box. Well, obviously it didn't take long to figure out this was a re-make of the famous 1963 film "Charade."

It's not really bad on it's own but if you've watched and admired Charade a half dozen times as I have, this film isn't even close measuring up. Mark Wahlberg is no Cary Grant; Thandie Newton is no Audry Hepburn and Tim Robbins in no Walter Matthau.

Why settle for second-rate after having first-rate? I mean, why even bother? It's not like you are updating some old black-and-white movie to accommodate today's crowd which won't look at B&W. The original still looks good (on the Criterion DVD).

Reviewed by jimor 2 / 10

A travesty of a remake puts all to shame

REVIEW: The Truth About Charlie, for IMDB, July 13, 2004

As "rosscinema" says in a previous post, "Why did they bother?" Well, they bothered for the same reason virtually all Hollywood films are made: to make **MONEY**, lots of MONEY! No one in their right mind would attempt to duplicate two so magic stars as Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn from the original "Charade", but some studio type thought they could cost in on the deserved reputation of the original for excellence, and make a bundle before the critics and the public got to see what a stinker this would-be remake is. Mark Wahlberg may have a certain presence, but a Cary Grant his is NOT and never will be; and that woman taking Hepburn's part was simply pathetic, what with her little moues of pseudo-British mouthings. Audrey, who was the quintessence of delicate dignity and charm, would spin in her grave, if she could. And with the change of dating to reflect, not the Second World War, but post-Vietnam, the entire tenor of the original was changed from a charming 'escapade-avec-larceny', to a mad chase with the modern dictum of 'diversity' with a cast more suited to a tract on multiculturalism, than anything having to do with telling a coherent story! The 'stamps' were well explained in the original, but here they are a throwaway plot device that more confuses than illuminates. And 'la belle Paris', mon Dieu, how it is ignored and abused in this tawdry effort; what was charming even in the face of murder and crime in the original, is merely seedy here. There is no magic between the stars as in "Charade", just some groping. And where was the duplicate of the crafty Walter Matthau character? Tim Robbins is a good actor, but here he is no replacement for the Mr. Dyle. And that dismal woman who is the police inspector is merely awful in this tiresome flick. If you have never seen "Charade" you must not let this failure make you think the original is as bad, for you would be denying yourself one of the finest delights of the modern screen, and the sight of two of its greatest luminaries, Grant and Hepburn, in very good form!

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