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Charlotte Gray (2001)

PG-13  |   |  Drama, Romance, Thriller  |  11 January 2002 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 8,715 users   Metascore: 48/100
Reviews: 129 user | 70 critic | 28 from Metacritic.com

A young Scottish woman joins the French Resistance during World War II to rescue her Royal Air Force boyfriend who is lost in France.



(novel), (screenplay)
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5 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard Cannerly
Abigail Cruttenden ...
Charlotte McDougall ...
Peter Gregory (as Rupert Penry Jones)
Robert Hands ...
Business Man at Party
Michael Fitzgerald ...
Business Man at Party
Martin Oldfield ...
Assault Course Instructor
Mr. Jackson
Mike Burnside ...
Morse Code Instructor
Damian Myerscough ...
Gun Instructor
Miranda Bell ...
Female Instructor
Angus Wright ...


Charlotte, a young Scottish woman, who has studied in France, is living in London during World War II. Within weeks she both falls in love with a young pilot and is recruited by the Secret Service to act as a courier for the French Resistance. However her mission behind enemy lines becomes a personal mission to find her lover who has been shot down. Assigned to a Communist Resistance group she encounters acts of betrayal from sometimes unexpected sources, but meets the violence of war and her own disappointment with hope.... Written by <johnno.r@xtra.co.nz>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The story of an ordinary woman in an extraordinary time.


Drama | Romance | Thriller | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some war related violence, sensuality and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |


Release Date:

11 January 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die Liebe der Charlotte Gray  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$37,258 (USA) (4 January 2002)


£1,323,162 (UK) (15 March 2002)

Company Credits

Production Co:

, ,  »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The true story of Nancy 'White Mouse' Wake inspired Sebastian Faulks' 1999 novel Charlotte Gray upon which the film is based. Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard said Mrs Wake was "a truly remarkable individual whose selfless valour and tenacity will never be forgotten". Born in New Zealand but raised in Australia, she is credited with helping hundreds of Allied personnel escape from occupied France. Working as a journalist in Europe, she interviewed Adolf Hitler in Vienna in 1933 and then vowed to fight against his persecution of Jews. After the fall of France in 1940, Mrs Wake became a French Resistance courier and later a saboteur and spy - setting up escape routes and sabotaging German installations, saving hundreds of Allied lives. She worked for British Special Operations and was parachuted into France in April 1944 before D-Day to deliver weapons to French Resistance fighters. At one point, she was top of the Gestapo's most wanted list. "Freedom is the only thing worth living for. While I was doing that work, I used to think it didn't matter if I died, because without freedom there was no point in living," Ms Wake once said of her wartime exploits. It was only after the liberation of France that she learned her husband, French businessman Henri Fiocca, had been tortured and killed by the Gestapo for refusing to give her up. She was Australia's most decorated servicewoman, and one of the most decorated Allied servicewomen of World War II. France awarded her its highest honour, the Legion D'Honneur; she also received Britain's George Medal, and the US Medal of Freedom. In 2004, she was made Companion of the Order of Australia. She died in London on August 8, 2011 aged 98. See more »


In the opening shot, a train carrying Charlotte to London is shown crossing a viaduct in the Scottish Highlands. The viaduct in question is the Glenfinnan viaduct, and in the distance you can see the Glenfinnan Monument to Bonny Prince Charlie. The train is clearly traveling North, away from London. See more »


[first lines]
Charlotte Gray: [narration] It all seemed so simple. We were at war. The Nazis were the enemy. And because good must triumph over evil, so we would triumph over them. How could we have know that war ever trades in such certainty? That we are nothing is unthinkable. Anything could be true. Even a lie.
See more »


References I Walked with a Zombie (1943) See more »


Black Eyed Susan Brown
Master performed by Phil Harris and his orchestra featuring The Three Ambassadors
By courtesy Hindsight Records
Written by Al Hoffman and Al Goodhart
Published by Keith Prowse Music Publishing Co Ltd
See more »

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User Reviews

Unconvincing film following an excellent documentary
10 October 2004 | by (London England) – See all my reviews

This film is a love story, loosely based on the real-life heroism of WWII. Those who enjoy such films would not have been disappointed by Charlotte Gray.

Unfortunately, Channel 4 decided to precede the film with the transmission of a documentary about the real-life heroines, whose personal sacrifices, pragmatic courage and strength of character shone out of my TV in a way that had me close to tears. The film, which followed, showed none of the iron self-discipline, the de-sensitising effect of war nor the constant fear of discovery these people lived with, but concerned itself with emotional story lines that would have been at home in any modern love story, loosely based on any social environment you care to choose. Far from blending into the background, along with the oppressed French population, Cate Blanchett was often portrayed parading in high heels and flattering autumnal colours, looking like a million francs

Too frequently for this viewer, it dipped into the downright absurd, e.g. having a) the male lead exposing himself to danger in an astonishing, barking tirade at German troops, b) the collaborationist French schoolteacher volunteering to the goodies that he was a snitch for the Germans and c) Charlotte herself somehow persuading a gendarme not to reveal her whereabouts to his search party colleagues, even when safely out of range of her pistol.

What a wonderful piece of history it was. And what a wonderful film could have been made of it (with the same cast too; the individual performances were all perfectly OK, especially in the minor roles).

18 of 27 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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