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Charade (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray]

4.3 out of 5 stars 696 customer reviews


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Editorial Reviews

In this deliciously dark comedic thriller, a trio of crooks relentlessly pursue a young American, played by Audrey Hepburn (Roman Holiday, Breakfast at Tiffany’s), outfitted in gorgeous Givenchy, through Paris in an attempt to recover the fortune her dead husband stole from them. The only person she can trust is a suave, mysterious stranger, played by Cary Grant (Bringing up Baby, North by Northwest). Director Stanley Donen (On the Town, Singin’ in the Rain, Two for the Road) goes splendidly Hitchcockian for CHARADE, a glittering emblem of sixties style and macabre wit.

Special Features

  • Restored high-definition digital transfer
  • Audio Commentary featuring Stanley Donen and Peter Stone
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film historian Bruce Eder

  • Product Details

    • Actors: Audrey Hepburn, Cary Grant, Walter Matthau, James Coburn, George Kennedy
    • Directors: Stanley Donen
    • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, NTSC, Special Edition, Widescreen
    • Language: English
    • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
    • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
    • Number of discs: 1
    • Rated:
      Unrated
      Not Rated
    • Studio: Criterion Collection
    • DVD Release Date: September 21, 2010
    • Run Time: 113 minutes
    • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (696 customer reviews)
    • ASIN: B003UM8T30
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,611 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

    Customer Reviews

    Top Customer Reviews

    By Robert E. Rodden II on May 3, 2001
    Format: DVD
    Anybody else out there own three copies of Charade on DVD?

    It's a great movie, yeah, but not worth three copies. Well, maybe the lesson was worth three copies. The first one took me by surprise. Front Row Features put it out. Nice looking jewel case with the word LETTERBOX EDITION across the top. I had to have it. Couldn't wait to watch it. It was the worst piece of crap I'd ever seen shoveled onto DVD. Faded colors. Blurry pictures. Horrid sound that kept breaking up. It was worse than my ten-year-old VHS copy. I was mortified. Then someone told me there was a copy out there by a company called Criterion Collection, but the price was $40.00. No way, I thought, am I paying that much for a movie.

    Next copy I bought was put out by Diamond Entertainment. I'll give them their due. They did a fairly good job of cleaning up whatever print they used. The picture is pretty good; color still slightly washed out, some flickering that's annoying. The sound has been repaired. So what you get is about a C+ to a low B- for this DVD. I like Diamond. And compared to the road kill that Front Row Features served up, the Diamond Entertainment version is a seven-course meal in the finest restaurant.

    At last, I couldn't stand it any longer. I went for the Criterion Collection version. I know, I know. Three copies. But the Front Row Features DVD will be thrown into the trash; I won't even subject a stranger at a garage sale to that basement torture trash. The Diamond Entertainment version, which is not a bad copy, just not the best, I'll hand over to my brother as a free-bee gift. He likes the movie, as well, and is even less likely than I to put out the cash.

    But then there's the Criterion Collection version.
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    12 Comments 264 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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    Format: DVD
    I got this DVD for Christmas and I wasn't disappointed. Stanley Donen, director of musicals such as "Singin' In The Rain" starring Gene Kelly, brought together Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn (who looks luminous, as always) in this wonderfully-written story about a Parisian widow (Hepburn) who is being pursued by three dangerous men (two of which are played by George Kennedy - an excellent "heavy" - and James Coburn at his most menacing) who want to find out about a large sum of money her dead husband supposedly had. Grant is the helpful stranger but eventually you begin to wonder: is he working with these men? Does he want the money for himself? Or is he really the handsome, older man Audrey finds herself falling in love with?
    Enhanced by a lush score by the late Henry Mancini, photographed beautifully in Paris and containing first-rate acting and deliciously wicked dialogue by writer Peter Stone, "Charade" is a film that should be in every serious DVD collection. Grant is older but better, like fine wine, and Ms. Hepburn ... well there have been millions of words used to describe her and I can't add to them other than to say the world lost a marvelous talent at her death.
    You'll enjoy "Charade" for a long, long time.
    Comment 98 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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    There are a lot of different releases of this movie on DVD, some of poor quality. If you can afford it, the Criterion Collection release (make sure it's the anamorphic one, not the earlier letterboxed version) is the best, in that it has a fine widescreen transfer and a commentary by the director.

    But if you're a normal human, the one to get happens to be almost the cheapest one to get used (as I write this), and isn't too expensive new either. It's the version on side B of The Truth About Charlie. That version comes from Universal, the studio that produced Charade, and is a clean anamorphic widescreen transfer with fairly good color and sharpness. It's got a few specks at the beginning but is good after the credits. No extras, except for that other movie on side A. (I haven't seen The Truth about Charlie, but it's apparently a mediocre update of Charade.)

    I've also looked at the Madacy release, and it's just OK, a nonanamorphic widescreen transfer, grainier than the Universal Studios transfer that comes with The Truth About Charlie. It comes with a fun extended trailer. Also included is a poor transfer of another movie that happens to be named Charade, but otherwise has nothing to do with this one. (That other Charade has James Mason in it, but I haven't watched it through yet to know if it's any good.) I've heard the Madacy release is as good as any of the "off-brand" ones.

    All of the the versions have mono sound.
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    2 Comments 54 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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    Format: DVD
    First and foremost, this is a very enjoyable movie. It was very enjoyable in 1963 and it remains enjoyable today. The actors, the story, and the cinematic craft are all first rate.
    This Criterion release is fantastic. Most of the video is absolutely flawless with well-saturated colors and an absence of artifacts. Even shots of Coburn's checked shirt are free of compression artifacts or aliasing which is common to this kind of shot. The audio is fine considering it is mono and mastered in 1963. There are a few rare blemishes noticeable on the screen that look like problems with the source media but that is nowhere near as offensive as artifacts or aliasing.
    The fun bonus on this edition is the writer and director commentary! For those of us that like this sort of thing, this is a very enjoyable example. Listening to these two, what?, 70-year-olds bicker back and forth is a complete crack-up!
    3 Comments 25 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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