Synopsis by Mark Deming
Director Jonathan Demme filters the classic Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant vehicle Charade through the influence of the French New Wave in this stylish romantic thriller. Regina Lambert (Thandie Newton) has been having second thoughts about her marriage to the often enigmatic art dealer Charlie (Stephen Dillane), and decides to take a vacation without him, where she meets Joshua Peters (Mark Wahlberg), a handsome and charming American who seems quite taken with her. When Regina returns home to Paris, she receives the startling news that her husband has been murdered; however, even more disturbing is her discovery that her husband had a secret life which involved several passports under different identities, and a missing six million dollars. Police official Commandant Dominique (Christine Boisson) seems to believe that Regina is somehow involved in the crime, while U.S. embassy representative Mr. Bartholomew (Tim Robbins) breaks the news to Regina that her late husband was actually a secret agent involved in some very shady operations. Three mysterious and dangerous figures who had ties to Charlie -- Emil Zadapec (Ted Levine), Lola Jansco (Lisa Gay Hamilton), and Il-Sang Lee (Joong-Hoon Park) -- also arrive in Paris, convinced that Regina knows where her husband stashed the money and determined to get their hands on it. Meanwhile, as Regina's life becomes increasingly chaotic and dangerous, Joshua arrives in Paris and a romance begins to blossom between them, but while he seems determined to do whatever he can to help her, Regina soon has reason to doubt that Joshua's motives are as pure as they seem. Shot on location in Paris, The Truth About Charlie also features cameo appearances from a number of legendary French actors and filmmakers, including Charles Aznavour, Anna Karina, and Agnès Varda.
secret-agent, secret-life, deception, double-cross, widow/widower, embassy