Today I decided to rewatch the 2004 film ‘Charlie’. Written and Directed by Malcolm Needs, ‘Charlie’ is based on the real life Charlie Richardson. In the 1960s , London was unofficially ruled by two families, North of the River were the Krays (Ronnie and Reg) ,and to the South, the Richardson family.
In this film Luke Goss takes the role of Charlie Richardson with the film being centered around a court trial that resulted in Charlie spending 18 years in prison on a sentence of 25 years. While in prison he escaped and, believe it or not, he came back, to give himself up, to finish his sentence.
The film is a wonderful companion to the Peter Medak film The Krays and whilst these two films arent really connected. They are of course set in the same world and build up a larger picture of the criminal world of the UK in the 6os and beyond.
Luke Goss is fantastic in the role of Charlie and balances the good guy/scary guy perfectly, he definitely portrays a charismatic anti hero thats for sure. Its no shock at all that Luke Goss has sustained a wonderful acting career from the beginning of the 21st century to this day (as of writing 2014) and with a great supporting cast including Steven Berkoff, Leslie Grantham and Chris Curran the film is wonderfully put together.
The film does have its harsh moments of course, and would you expect any less from a gangland underworld film but those shock moments are few and far between so no need for a pillow to hide behind.
I first saw this film when it arrived on DVD many years ago, but saw it on my shelf today and felt it needed a rewatch. Im so glad I did and as the end credits rolled with some title cards and updates on what happened following the events of the film. I realised that I needed to share the film ‘Charlie’ with you. If you havent seen it. You should.
Here are some snippets from the official Luke Goss website where he talks about various aspects of the film ‘Charlie’
You can find the Official Luke Goss Website HERE.
What was it like meeting Charlie Richardson? I’ll admit I was a little bit intimidated. I went up to him, shook his hand and he put his arm around me and said, “You’re a true South London boy, aren’t you?” and we immediately hit it off. I even took him and Frankie Fraser to lunch a few times after that. It’s strange meeting somebody you’re going to be playing. During the first scenes on set he was there doing a cameo and it was kind of off-putting because he was sitting to my left with a pint of bitter.
Do you think the film glamorises the Richardsons? No, because the movie’s based on a true story. Like it or not, it happened. It very difficult to glamorise the truth and all we’ve done is document something that happened in the ’60s. The thing about Charlie is that he didn’t mess with outsiders.