Best Film Classics: Charade (1963)


When we meet Audrey Hepburn in this film, she’s moaning at length (and in luxury) about her highly secretive husband. This issue becomes moot after her husband’s body is heaved off a fast-moving train. During her scenic bitch-fest about the man, she meets the delectable Cary Grant, who looks after her during her time in need.


Hepburn’s need for Grant’s ministrations grow when it comes to light that her late husband and three (or is it four?) other men stole money from the U.S. government during World War II. The other men think Hepburn has the moolah, and they will kill her (and possibly each other) to get their hands on it.


What ensues is a cat-and-mouse game, of sorts. Cary Grant, who plays Peter Joshua (and a few other names), is the widow’s benefactor – or is he? Hepburn, in the part of Mrs. Lampert, gets all sorts of mixed signals about his real intentions. She is approached by Walter Matthau, who plays a CIA official and asks her (in essence) to investigate what the men are up to and report to him, because “women make the best spies” (or agents, to use the modern parlance).


Set in the exotic locale of Paris, the story is funny, suspenseful and full of twists. Hepburn looks très chic in her color-coordinated wardrobe. (She fills out a white trench coat so fetchingly.) Grant looks old enough to be her père, but … hey … that’s Hollywood, right? And we’re talking Cary Grant.


I give this awesome film two thumbs up!

Hand showing thumbs up. All on white background.

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