The Death and Life of Charlie St Cloud

Film, Drama
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The Death and Life of Charlie St Cloud
Tear-jerkers based on novels are standard fare for rising heartthrobs, so this Ben Sherwood adaptation is a logical move for ‘High School Musical’ alumnus Zac Efron – and a logical marketing decision, considering the millions of young women who follow his every move.
But there’s something a little too clean cut about Efron for the role of Charlie St Cloud, an ambitious sailor and scholar who turns into a recluse after the death of his younger brother Sam (Charlie Tahan). The local fishing-village community think Charlie’s gone mad: for five years, he works in a graveyard and plays baseball with his dead brother in the woods every night. But we know he’s still heartthrob Zac Efron – he’s still shaving every day, for starters.

That said, this is a fantasy, and the suspension of disbelief is key as the film moves further into supernatural territory (let’s just say it’ll please fans of ‘Ghost’). But as the drama increases, so do the clumsy flashbacks and corny lines: this relies on cheap tricks to force tears, even if those tricks work. As for the supporting cast, Tahan is suitably adorable, while Amanda Crew will divide audiences as love interest Tess. At least her character has her own mind and career: she’s about to sail around the world solo. There’s also an amusing turn from young Brit Augustus Prew, who brings a welcome streak of irreverence as Charlie’s party-boy colleague. Cynics need not apply.

By: Anna Smith


Release details

Rated: 12A
Release date: Friday October 8 2010
Duration: 99 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Burr Steers
Cast: Zac Efron
Ray Liotta
Kim Basinger

Average User Rating

2.8 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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i think this is a good and emotional film that you can laugh and cry during, its one of those films that you think you have all figured out, you know...... the hot guy the girl he'll fall in love with and the all of the bumps along the way but it actually surprised me with a twist near the end that afterwards you sort of feel like you should have known was coming. it makes the film a lot more interesting and less predictable. zac efron gives a intense emotional performance that is very believable as does charlie tahan who plays sam this is definately a film worth watching. if you dont get even a little tear in your eye there is something wrong with you i love this film!

i will admit that this isnt the worst review of this film but its still completely untrue! Zac Efron plays the part down to a tee taking us with him on his emotional journey. i agree with what Evie said, if you don;t cry, there is something wrong with you!

A competent enough film that goes through the motions adequately for the Zac market. What irritates me is that American continues to feed this quasi-religious life after death, everything happens for a reason pulp to young people. Why we can't have secular drama without resorting to 'follow the light' cliches I don't know.

You don't have to be a teenage girl to enjoy this. Like 17 Again this has a broader family appeal. I doubt if anyone who disapproves of Zac Efron has ever seen one of his films. His oddly old school yet modern screen charisma is undeniable and he handles the emotionally dramatic storyline as ably as the fancy sailing scenes. True, he looks way to clean cut for his character and Amanda Crew is about as bland as you get but its better than the mushy TV-movie I was expecting from the trailer. If you dont cry theres something possibly wrong with you.