4.7/10
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154 user 78 critic

The Truth About Charlie (2002)

PG-13 | | Mystery, Thriller | 25 October 2002 (USA)
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0:32 | Trailer

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ON DISC
A woman returns from holiday to find her husband has been murdered, and several groups of people are pressuring her to unravel the mystery of his true identity and activities during his final days.

Director:

Jonathan Demme

Writers:

Peter Stone (based on the motion picture "Charade" screenplay by), Jonathan Demme (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Olga Sékulic Olga Sékulic ... Junior Military Officer
Stephen Dillane ... Charlie
Françoise Bertin Françoise Bertin ... Woman on Train
Thandie Newton ... Regina Lambert
Cassius Kumar Wilkinson Cassius Kumar Wilkinson ... Hercules
Sakina Jaffrey ... Sylvia
Mark Wahlberg ... Lewis Bartholamew
Christine Boisson ... Commandant Dominique
Simon Abkarian ... Lieutenant Dessalines
Christophe Salengro Christophe Salengro ... Morgue Attendant
Philippe Fretun Philippe Fretun ... Evidence Handler
Loeïza Jacq Loeïza Jacq ... Evidence Handler
Joong-Hoon Park ... Il-Sang Lee
LisaGay Hamilton ... Lola Jansco
Ted Levine ... Emil Zadapec
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Storyline

A young woman in Paris is about to divorce her husband when she discovers... he's dead; and all their money is gone. She meets a mysterious man, who tells her that the money was really his, and he wants it back, seemingly convinced that she's hiding the cash. Meanwhile, more people end up dead... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violence and sexual content/nudity | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Universal

Country:

Germany | USA

Language:

English | French | Arabic

Release Date:

25 October 2002 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La verdad sobre Charlie See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,270,290, 27 October 2002, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$5,350,371

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$7,093,284
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Joong-Hoon Park's first Hollywood major studio movie. See more »

Goofs

There is a red, British phone booth in the Paris flea market. See more »

Quotes

Regina Lambert: It's Regina, you know. Nobody calls me Reggie.
Joshua Peters: Nobody at all, huh?
Regina Lambert: Not til now, anyway.
Joshua Peters: [smiles] Good.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Just as the reference for Francois Truffaut's "Tirez sur le Pianiste" is shown, a shot of Truffaut's grave is inserted. See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD release in includes several deleted scenes totaling to about eleven minutes. Among them are more of the visit with the Commandant, Regina mistaking a flirtatious man for Joshua, the opening of the mysterious package, and a flashback when Il-Sang, Emil, and Lola are in the army and Emil is playing bluegrass on his guitar. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Maltin on Movies: Secretariat (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Mr. Kennedy
Written by Robyn Hitchcock
Performed by The Soft Boys
Courtesy of Mr. & Mrs. Soft
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User Reviews

 
Jonathan, how could you?
22 May 2003 | by mmckaibabSee all my reviews

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.


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