Reactions to Charlatan

Charlatan, the sixth film of our 77th season achieved an overall appreciation score of 80%, there was appreciation for the film’s beauty and drama, the acting and script, but some criticism of the film being overly long and again somewhat depressing. Some of the comments submitted:

  • I was surprised by this film. All aspects…including the direction and acting was superb! It deserves my “Excellent” rating.
  • The film is so beautifully shot and dramatically scored as the tension rises. The film has both a warmth and poignancy and gipping tension right to the end. I even had a tear in my eye as the door closes in the last frame!
  • An absorbing story with many interlinked threads, brilliantly told.
  • A film of twists and turns & then the shock of letting his confidant & reluctant lover take the rap for the jumped-up charges, really got your mind about him going. Charlatan excellent name for the film. Well done.
  • A film that you are not going to forget in a hurry. Brilliant script and excellent acting. Sets were exactly right for the time and historically one certainly learnt what a complicated political turmoil there was at that time.
  • What a fascinating and thought provoking film. Moments have stayed with me and we have talked about it so much. Clever use of time frames and a brilliant ending meant it was totally engaging. We almost didn’t come as I wasn’t sure I fancied another miserable film but ended up so pleased we gave it a chance.
  • Well-acted and directed. Powerful and morally ambivalent.
  • Powerful depiction of a complex, nuanced character. That the film strayed quite a long way away from the historical fact was not a problem for me.
  • Technically very good but a little pedestrian in approach. Cinematography excellent, flashbacks worked well without confusion. Character of the lead well drawn revealing his complexity. Overall, though not as engaging as it might have been as it lacked emotion across major stretches.
  • Disturbing but compelling viewing. Modern themes and dilemmas set in an historical context making it very thought provoking.
  • Fascinating information about an herbalist. A little confusing going backwards and forwards in time.
  • Well-made drama, with great attention to detail for the period in which it was set. Fairly brutal film, which doesn’t showcase the best of humanity. Women didn’t feature at all in the film. They weren’t even a backdrop.
  • Comedy medicine & bleak drama, mildly interesting but adding little insight.
  • Difficult watch. Predictable until conclusion. Stereo typical depiction of characters.
  • Too long, the main protagonist was highly unpleasant, well-acted.
  • I thought the pace was too slow, it should have been 15 minutes shorter. It also should have explained why the Communists turned against him, even if they had no real reason (highly likely), it would have made the narrative better. Fine acting, interesting story but….
  • I have recently missed a couple of movies, but it would be nice to see something a little bit lighter or uplifting otherwise every time I expect to be sad after each movie.