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on July 23, 2008
This is a masterpiece in and around itself- really. 'Charade' really showcases Audrey Hepburn's acting talents and versatility. She really showed audiences what she could do as Regina 'Reggie' Lampbert. (did I spell her last name right?)

Charade will keep you glued to the screen until the end... and at no point in the movie are you ever thinking about what you are going to do tomorrow, or what is happening. It's right there in front of you. 'Charade' made me look at Audrey as not just a style icon, but a talented actress. Not like a cut-out doll that most of the actresses of her time were like. (Excluding some) I mean, the plot is so rich and entertaining- you just can't go wrong with this movie!

The quality of this particular DVD is pretty bad, so I recommend 'Cary Grant Double Feature'. It has 'Charade' and 'Amazing Adventure'. You get 2 in 1 and the quality is WAY better.
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on June 2, 2002
This film happens to be in my top 10 of my all time favorite films and I was very happy to pick up this copy. However there are differences between the Critereon versions and this version from Madacy. Unless you want to spend [money] for the Critereon version {and I wasn't prepared to do so} this version is good but not great. The film itself really needs no detailed review except to say that is one of the best comedy/thrillers ever made. It was also Cary Grant's last great film {He made only 2 more films after this-"Father Goose" and "Walk Don't Run"}. He is so suave and debonair that he could give James Bond a run for his money. Also Audrey Hepburn, James Coburn, George Kennedy, and Walter Matthau give excellent performances. I was very suprised about the film quality {I expected worse} however the films sound is quite muddled and hard to understand. There are no real bonuses except for the theatrical trailer, and a trivia game that's not really worth mentioning. There is also a second film included bearing the same name that stars James Mason and Pamela Mason. There is no connection to the Cary Grant version. The quality of that film is much worse and you can see it once and never worry about it again. It is in b+w and was made in 1953. To sum it all up if you don't want to spend alot more money this is an ok version for your collection.
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on June 1, 2004
I saw this movie in 1963 when it was released. I was captivated by it then and remain so. The kaleidoscopic opening credits are as beautiful as I remember, and the chase scenes-- on foot here-- are still exciting. We will never see anyone like Audrey Hepburn again. A total original, she and Gary Grant-- showing considerable skill as a comedian here-- are magnificent as a couple, having both style and electricity, often forgotten qualities in many of today's leading actors. Heburn and Grant are assisted by the likes of James Coburn, a young Walter Matthau and George Kennedy in supporting roles. Then there's Henry Mancini's score and direction by Stanley Donen. The plot takes many interesting twists and turns as Ms. Hepburn tries to figure out just who the dashing Mr. Grant really is-- a criminal or her savior or perhaps both or neither.
If you've seen this movie before, you'll enjoy a replay. If this is your first time, you'll in for a real treat, a delightful way to spend an evening.
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on May 25, 2016
A comedy/romance/thriller with class. Audrey Hepburn shines as Reggie Lampbert whose husband, Charles, is murdered while they are on vacation in France. Soon afterward three menacing men show up looking for $250,000 - the value of gold they stole and hid during WWII but were double crossed by Charles. Also making Reggie's acquaintance are a charming stranger (Cary Grant) and a CIA administrator (Walter Matthau) both separately wanting to help Reggie find the lost loot and protect her life. The film is full of witty dialogue and plot twists. Cary Grant as the romantic lead seems a bit old for Hepburn but they play well together. In fact they seem to be having a lot of fun. James Coburn and George Kennedy, both early in their careers, appear in supporting roles. Where is the money? Who is the murderer? What is the real identity of the character played by Cary Grant? The movie keeps you guessing to the end. For a murder mystery it sure seems lighthearted. All the recognizable actors are now deceased.
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Cary Grant. Audrey Hepburn. A hidden megafortune. Three nasty pursuers. A slick, chic thriller with a Hitchcockian edge.

With that kind of formula, it's not surprising that "Charade" deserves every shred of praise it receives -- and over the years, this classic has received a lot. Director Stanlet Donen had his finest moment when he created this funny, witty, tightly-plotted little thriller, where you're left with questions right up to the final scene, and stars Grant and Hepburn have electric chemistry as a quirky widow and a man of mystery.

While on vacation at a ski lodge, Regina Lampert (Hepburn) decides to get a divorce from her distant husband Charles. But when she returns home, she finds that her husband has been tossed off a train -- and even stranger, she finds that he was mixed up in a World War II OSS gold robbery many years ago. To get her mind off her problems, Reggie goes out on the town with Peter Joshua (Grant), a guy she met at the resort.

But during her outing, she's cornered by three strange, creepy men (James Coburn, Ned Glass, George Kennedy) -- and the worst part is, she finds that Joshua may be in on their plot to find the long-lost gold. Unsure whom to trust, Reggie starts digging to find out where the gold is -- and then her pursuers are murdered one by one by an unknown assailant. Will she be the next target? Who can she trust? And where exactly has the money gone?

"Charade" is one of those rare movies where everything just seems to click smoothly together, with few rough edges or boring spots. In some ways it's reminiscent of the more commercial thrillers by Alfred Hitchcock ("To Catch A Thief," "North By Northwest"), but with a slightly more chic, New-Wave-inspired atmosphere (Hepburn's delightful wardrobe) mingled with a classic old-movie charm (the boat ride down the Seine, shimmering with lights and witty dialogue).

Director Stanley Donen's background was mostly in comedies, which made him well-suited for the more lighthearted moments of the story. There's lots of rapid-fire back-and-forth wit that sparks off in most of Reggie and Joshua's dialogue ("You won't be able to lie on your back for awhile," Reggie quips, "but then you can lie from any position") and romantic interplay (Grant showering fully-clad, or the orange-transference game) that goes just fast enough to be entrancing, but not so much that it loses the audience.

But it isn't all fun and games, as Donen showed he was equally good at crafting a subtle, suspenseful thriller. "Charade" has some deeply disturbing moments (Reggie being tormented by a man throwing matches in her lap) and some harrowing death scenes. Along the way, he sprinkles the story with subtle twists and Chekov's guns, from an insufferable prankster child to the way that Reggie's pursuers meet their end.

Apparently Cary Grant wasn't entirely comfortable playing opposite Hepburn, but any age gap practically becomes invisible once they share the screen -- they have electric chemistry, whether they're sparring verbally, chasing a kiss in a nightclub or evading a murderer. Better yet, nobody knows who Grant really is or what he's doing, so there's an added element of danger to their relationship.

"Charade" is a tightly-plotted, wryly witty little thriller with the sparkling quality of champagne -- plenty of excitement, amazing acting and an enchantingly creepy plot.
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on December 17, 2016
Like a Hitchcock who-done-it combined with a lot of humour! The shower scene is fun! Great to see Hepburn as the pursuing lover and Grant doing his best to deflect her attentions. Excellent supporting cast with Lee Marvin, George Kennedy and Walter Mathau.
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on September 11, 2016
A well written story with a excellent comedy aspect with a well devolved drama mistery. The whole cast is well chosen and acted out there characters very well.Both Grant and Hepburn where excellent and very entertaining. A VERY GOOD choice of a DVD.
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on February 6, 2010
This was the first Audrey Hepburn movie I watched and I fell in love with her. This movie was the best I have seen in a long time. The plot is so packed with excitement, you will be on the edge of your seat the whole time. It is also full of comedy. A great movie for the whole family (not just a chick flick!). A truly great film!
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on August 3, 2002
Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn star in this classic thriller. Regina Lambert, wife of a wealthy Parisian, returns from a ski vacation to find that her husband has fled--unsuccessfully, as he's been murdered while en route by train. He has thoughtfully saved his widow-to-be the bother of an estate sale, having sold all his household goods, leaving her an empty apartment and the question of where his money have gone. But she's not the only one looking--seems he stole his money from the U.S. Government during World War II, and both the U.S. and Charles' co-conspirators would like the money. In fact, seems someone is prepared to kill for it . . . again.
An absolute delight. The funeral scene is one of the funniest on record, with one of Charles' wartime "buddies" sticking a pin into him to make sure he's dead. Both Grant and Hepburn excel in their roles, as does James Coburn as Tex Panthollow (I love that name), one of the wartime "buddies".
Let's face it, this movie is based on a flawed premise. The items into which Charles converted his wealth would suffer greatly in value if treated in the way indicated in the film, and I refuse to believe that their very unusual nature could be overlooked by the police (even the French police) and by everyone else who sees them.
But if you're prepared to overlook that, it is a delightful movie.
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on December 18, 2014
Everybody knows the movie itself, so I will comment on this Blu-Ray edition. I did see "Charade" a few times, and this is the best possible restauration I have seen so far with a sharp image with perfectly saturated colors. I hope Criterion will eventually release the equally worthy movie "Arabesque", also directed by Stanley Donen. Recommended!
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