Prawaal Raman does a commendable job of recreating the 60s-70s. He also gets his protagonist’s physicality and smugness bang on. Working on a wafer-thin account given to him by the real-life Delhi cop, Amod Kanth, Raman still manages to infuse life (at least partly) into this film and into the life of the notorious killer.
The intrigue kicks in when a couple of bikini-clad bodies are washed ashore a beach in Thailand. That’s when you know that Main Aur Charles Sobhraj, a Indo-French con man, who also has a penchant for killing women is around. There is no logic for his action. You have simply bought into the explanation that he is a psychopath who can charm the panties off the women; so much so, they don’t even notice when he is putting them down.
To escape a death penalty in Thailand for multiple murders, Main Aur Charles flees to India. Now the plot veers between Goa, Mumbai and Delhi. His modus-operandi is repetitive; he sleeps with his prey and then drugs them to death. You are also told he uses the passport of the women he kills to plan his next escape.
Makes you ponder, was immigration that gullible? Anyway, the morally bankrupt hippie culture of that time helped this killing machine stay on a roll. Even as cops on his trail, from different Indian states are shown squabbling to mark their jurisdiction, Main Aur Charles makes a monkey of them by stage-managing his arrest and escapes. Prison wardens eat out of his palm as do inmates.
A criminal law student Mira Sharma (Richa) also finds herself inexorably drawn to him. By the end of this film, Charles (here we are talking about the real man) who is currently lodged in a Kathmandu prison is given celebrity status.Randeep is convincing; the uncanny physical resemblance and accent help bring Main Aur Charles alive. Most of the supporting cast is good, but Adil Hussain is a notch above.