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"THE TRUTH ABOUT CHARLIE"
(2002) (Thandie Newton, Mark Wahlberg) (PG-13)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Moderate Moderate Heavy Moderate Moderate
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Minor Minor Mild *None Mild
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Heavy Mild Mild Mild Moderate


QUICK TAKE:
Romantic Thriller: A woman tries to figure out what's going on and who to believe when various untrustworthy characters show up following her husband's murder.
PLOT:
Regina Lambert (THANDIE NEWTON) is a Brit living in Paris who's set to divorce her husband, Charles (STEPHEN DILLANE), after just four months of marriage. She doesn't get the chance, however, for when she returns from vacation, she discovers that he liquated their belongings and has now been murdered.

Interviewed by local police Commandant Jeanne Dominique (CHRISTINE BOISSON) and her assistant, Lieutenant Dessalines (SIMON ABKARIAN), Regina learns that Charles wasn't the man she thought and had many passports and aliases. She then confides in American Joshua Peters (MARK WAHLBERG) whom she briefly met on vacation and then again at the airport while returning home.

He then puts her up in a nearby hotel where she receives a message to meet Mr. Bartholomew (TIM ROBBINS), an American official with the Office of Defense Cooperation. He informs her that Charles was involved in covert military operations and that $6 million related to that is now missing. He also warns her to watch out for a trio of other operatives -- Il-Sang Lee (JOONG-HOON PARK), Emil Zadapec (TED LEVINE) and Lola Jansco (LISA GAY HAMILTON) - who will come looking for the money.

As Regina repeatedly runs into the various untrustworthy characters who tell her their versions of the truth regarding the money and their involvement with it, she tries to figure out what's really going on and who to believe.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Older teens could be drawn to it as might fans of the director or anyone in the cast, but the film doesn't otherwise look overly attractive to most kids.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For some violence and sexual content/nudity.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • THANDIE NEWTON plays a woman who tries to figure out what's going on and who to trust when she finds herself caught in the middle of a potentially dangerous situation regarding lost money that others believe she possesses. She smokes a few times and is a bit drunk once.
  • STEPHEN DILLANE plays her husband who ends up dead but not before having an affair with another woman.
  • MARK WAHLBERG plays an American who comes to Regina's aid and tries to protect her from the others, but may or may not actually be working with them or just in his own interest.
  • TIM ROBBINS plays a man who claims to be a government agent who warns Regina about the others but may or may not have his own agenda.
  • JOONG-HOON PARK, TED LEVINE, and LISA GAY HAMILTON play a trio of former operatives who want their money back and intimidate Regina in the process.
  • CHRISTINE BOISSON plays the local police official who wants to solve the murder. She smokes a few times.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a brief summary of the content found in this film that's been rated PG-13. Profanity consists of only a few "s" words and a handful of colorful expletives. Some sexually related dialogue is present, while a sexual encounter is implied (we see the woman getting dressed afterwards and briefly see her bare breasts and rear). Other partially obscured female nudity is present in a bathroom scene.

    Violence includes a person being hit and killed by a car (with bloody results), people struggling or fighting with each other (also with some bloody results), holding guns on others, and some brief and quick flashbacks to some past military firefight. It's possible some of those scenes and others could be tense or suspenseful to some viewers, but most aren't played in completely realistic fashion.

    Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes. Several characters smoke, and one drinks wine and is a bit tipsy, while a mother sees her long absent son dead in the morgue (but we don't see him). If you're still concerned about the film and its appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home who may be interested in seeing it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • A bottle of wine is seen in the opening credits, while many bottles are seen in a wine store.
  • Regina drinks wine, has a glass of it in a cab with Joshua and comments on being a bit drunk.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • A person has blood from their eye, nose and mouth after being hit by a car.
  • Regina discovers a body partially in an elevator and there's blood from the mouth and on the side of the head.
  • Joshua has some blood on the side of his head.
  • A person's face is bloody in a flashback.
  • A man has blood on his face and head, while blood runs down Joshua's face in the rain.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Those responsible for killing or threatening others have bad attitudes, while they and others purposefully deceive and misrepresent themselves to others for their own gain.
  • It's implied that Charles cheats on Regina with another woman (we see that woman getting dressed after apparent sex with Charles on a train).
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed under "Violence" could also possibly be suspenseful to some viewers (but most aren't played at face value).
  • Not long after finding her place emptied and partially damaged, Regina hears loud knocking at her door and is nervous about who's there.
  • Lola somewhat menacingly confronts Regina in a mostly deserted and closed flea market.
  • Regina has a close encounter with Emil in a small elevator. He briefly struggles with her, but Joshua comes to her rescue and throws Emil down to the floor. The two then struggle.
  • A man has problems breathing and then collapses on a train due to cardiac arrest (but it isn't really played for suspense or to be disturbing in general).
  • A character is hit by a car after she knocks the intended victim out of the way (we don't see the impact but do see the results of two smashed cars and see the victim - who was apparently knocked through a storefront window - who's bloody and then dies).
  • Regina discovers a body partially in an elevator and there's blood from the mouth and on the side of the head. She then hears someone around the corner and slowly goes to investigate.
  • Jeanne holds her gun on a man's back, but he spins around, grabs the gun and holds it to her face while holding another gun on various other people who aim their guns at him in a several minute standoff (no violence follows).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handguns: Held by various characters on others during a standoff.
  • We see a photo of a man holding a machine gun or automatic weapon.
  • We briefly see a flashback to a scene at night where tracers illuminate the scene and several characters fall to the ground apparently after being hit by gunfire (they also carry machine guns or similar weaponry).
  • Knife: Used by Joshua to tear open items.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Bullsh*t," "Give me a break" and "You look like hell."
  • It's possible the film could inspire some imaginative kids to try to fool others by assuming different names and identities, etc.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • A person suddenly grabs Regina.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A mild amount of suspenseful or ominous music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None that we heard, but a song did contain lyrics that we couldn't understand, thus offering the possibility of potentially objectionable material.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 2 "s" words, 1 hell and 1 use of "My God" as exclamations
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • A classical painting of a woman's torso shows bare breasts and the crotch area (but nothing graphic), while another shows a bare butt.
  • We see a young woman getting dressed on a train. During this, we see most of her bare butt as well as a side view of her bare breasts. She then kisses Charles and it's implied that they had sex or were fooling around.
  • Regina shows some cleavage in various scenes.
  • Jeanne questions Joshua about what kind of guy gets to go to bed with Regina (he answers a dead one referring to Charles).
  • We see Regina in her panties and very tight and form-fitting tank-top.
  • Regina and Joshua briefly kiss. She then says that she has to shower before eating and we see a view from inside the shower looking through the partially transparent shower curtain (through which we see her undress and see the shape of her bare breasts). Later, we see a view through the bathroom door and its smoked glass window panes and see the shape of her bare butt.
  • Lola tells Joshua that all he wants to do regarding Regina is "get into her pants."
  • We see Emil in his boxers.
  • We briefly see a flashback of some women doing sensual/sexual dancing on the stage.
  • We see Jeanne in bed with Lieutenant Dessalines (after being awakened by a call from Regina) and he briefly kisses up her clothed body (but nothing explicit).
  • Joshua and Regina passionately kiss.
  • SMOKING
  • Jeanne and Regina each smoke several times, while various miscellaneous characters smoke (including on a smokers car on a train where the smoke is thick).
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • We hear that Regina is about to divorce Charles (after only four months of marriage), but she then discovers that he's been murdered (but there's no grieving).
  • We see a flashback of a woman looking down on her dead son that she hasn't seen since he left home when he was fourteen (after years of his father beating him and his mother - we hear but don't see that).
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • How some people aren't what they initially seem to be.
  • Trust and how to know whom one can trust.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Regina returns home to find her place empty and some of it damaged (walls torn open, etc.). We also hear that Charles was murdered, but don't see the act or the body.
  • Emil pushes a morgue worker back against the wall and appears to grab his crotch in a threatening fashion.
  • Regina has a close encounter with Emil in a small elevator. He briefly struggles with her, but Joshua comes to her rescue and throws Emil down to the floor. The two then struggle.
  • We briefly see a flashback to a scene at night where tracers illuminate the scene and several characters fall to the ground apparently after being hit by gunfire. We see that scene again.
  • A character is hit by a car after she knocks the intended victim out of the way (we don't see the impact but do see the results of two smashed cars and see the victim - who was apparently knocked through a storefront window - who's bloody and then dies).
  • A few people are knocked down or aside as Joshua races Il-Sang Lee back to a hotel. The two then struggle in a hallway where Il-Sang Lee throws Joshua down to the floor, and the two then alternate grabbing each other and pulling him down the stairs to get past him.
  • Regina sees a bloody and apparently dead man (but we later see that he's not dead).
  • Jeanne holds her gun on a man's back, but he spins around, grabs the gun and holds it to her face while holding another gun on various other people who aim their guns at him in a several minute standoff (no violence follows).
  • It's implied that a person has harmed another person via food that she gives him (as we hear him scream and she smiles as she walks away).



  • Reviewed October 22, 2002 / Posted October 25, 2002

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