Charade (1963): Quality Who Dunnit [FQ14 #54]

In the history of “who dunnit” films, Charade is a timeless classic not to be missed.

charade_1963_slide

Why I Saw It: I’ve been a big fan of Cary Grant for quite some time, though despite CHARADE being one of his more notable roles, I had never seen it. My film reviewer resume was also quite lacking in terms of Audrey Hepburn performances, which made this film an even more attractive option.

Rating: 8.7 out of 10

Memorable Performances: The performance from Cary Grant was on par with what he’s done in North By Northwest and To Catch A Thief, and although I won’t go into any detail about it (for spoilers sake), I will say that his involvement in the third act made the performance somewhat more memorable than those others. Audrey Hepburn interacting with Cary Grant, and the quality of her performance, is absolutely something I’ll never forget. Walter Matthau also gives a memorable performance, however, that might be primarily because the other roles I’ve seen him in are primarily comedies.

Potential Nominations for Film Quest ’13:  

  • Best Actor – Cary Grant
  • Best Actress – Audrey Hepburn

Favorite Parts: The fact that the film keeps you guessing until almost the VERY end of the movie without getting too complicated was quite a feat. As for individual scenes, the “drip dry suit” scene was highly entertaining, and the scene where two of the characters were racing through a train station was excellent. The very end of the film was good as well, closing everything out and giving one additional twist to appreciate, to the degree that I’d like to see a sequel.

The Regrettable Aspects: I can’t really think of anything egregious, but I came up with a couple small things. The rooftop fight scene wasn’t particularly well choreographed, though it was somewhat believable. Also, not enough time was spent on the third antagonist in the trio, to the degree that I nearly forgot about him.

Would I watch it again? Absolutely. It probably won’t be in 2014, but at some point, I’m going to have to watch it with my wife and a couple other friends of mine who really enjoy movies.

To Whom Would I Recommend It?  Anyone who likes a film that keeps them guessing and unfolds some interesting plot twists along the way should give this one a try.

Note: This was the 54th film I’ve seen for my Film Quest 2014.

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