wogma rating: Add to that never-watched 'To Watch' list (?)
Lots of style. Not substance-less but you can tell that wasn't the focus.Read more
Main aur Charles' trailer is intriguing, the cast oozes oomph, the style is unmissable. Would it translate to a film that keeps interest? Will it end up glamorizing an unapologetic criminal?
These contradicting thoughts itself make me look forward to the film. Grey characters entice and style bring you back to reality. Other than these thoughts though, there is nothing much the trailer gives away. “Wait and watch” in the true sense this one is.
Bollywood Life - "2/5"
- meeta, a part of the audience
Main Aur Charles is stylish. Charles is suave. He is also supposedly a charming seducer – so you are told, not shown. The film builds an air about the character Charles Sobhraj (Randeep Hooda), but leaves it at that and doesn't get into the details. His overwhelming effect is shown, but the cause is to be assumed.
For example, a criminal psychologist interviews Charles Sobhraj and she comes out rather impressed. How did he do it? Well, this movie won't tell you. The only vague attempt is made through Meera (Richa Chadda) when she talks about how she feels about him. However, she backs out and steps in too haphazardly to make sense.
The performances though are the kind that keep you with the film. You want to smack the smirk off Randeep Hooda's face and that is his achievement. However, Richa Chadda isn't too convincing as Charles' dreamy-eyed lover. Adil Hussain though brings balance to the lop-sided view of Charles Sobhraj. He firmly represents a voice from the audience that says, “why is this murderer being romanticized?”
The entire film is made to give that aura to the character, begging you to be seduced by him, by overcome by his slithery charm. The sepia tone, the accent, the Bond/Don-esque theme music all work towards that. There were a few distractions in terms of authenticity of the era – for example, a scene from the 80s is interspersed with a shot of a newspaper dated 1965. The clothes in Goa, especially those being sold by street vendors, looked very similar to the ones I saw in my recent trip to Goa. But hey, for all I know, fashion might have has done a full circle.
All of which would have been totally ignored, were I engrossed in the story being told. They are stylish snippets that have little detail in the telling. Yet again, we have a film based on a real life personality that doesn't tell us much more about the personality than what we new from newspapers or a quick Internet search.
- meeta, a part of the audience
Thumbs up, by Suparna Sharma, Deccan Chronicle : ...The film, written and directed by Prawaal Raman, is classy and not show offy. It keeps its attention on the polite inmate accused of several murders. Hooda’s Charles, like the real one, maintains and conveys a grandeur by talking of books, of wanting to belong to a woman, a country, of books and philosophers, even when his hands are chained and he is talking from across a wire mesh. But it also catches him in the solitude of his cell, and with his accomplices — moments when he shows his commitment to meticulously controlling the story and images that get played in the media. ... full review
Thumbs up, by Gayatri Gauri, FirstPost : ...You don’t really mind the missing hard-boiled plot, because by the time the film ends, we are treated to well-shot frames and the amazing theme music. Style wins. The seduction is complete. ... full review
Thumbs up, by Raja Sen, Rediff : ...Not that we need it. Charles is the only ladykiller we know, and we remain fascinated. And despite the character having Mein Kampf on his shelf and showing fellow prisoners Fritz Lang's Metropolis -- "Hitler's favourite film" -- it should be remembered that the 'Charles' in his name came from a Chaplin impression he used to do back in the day. (Or, at least, that's how the story goes.) ... full review
Thumbs up, by Rummana, yahoo! India : ...‘Main Aur Charles’ is an intriguing tale, neatly stitched together – it seemingly reconstructs a single incident (the jailbreak) and the subsequent events. However it provides an ambiguous insight into one of history’s most astute “criminal” mind. ... full review
So-So, by Rachit Gupta, Filmfare : ...Main Aur Charles is worth a watch for Randeep Hooda alone. Couple that with a fabulous performance by Hussain and director Raman’s control over his subject make this worth a very strong recommendation. ... full review
So-So, by Josh, fullhyd.com : ...Main Aur Charles is far from perfect. It's very easy to dismiss, too. But if you are among those who have the patience to let creative artists find their feet (as Prawaal Raman does, in the second half) and who can appreciate isolated technical achievements despite a flawed narrative, then you'll find it a curiously intriguing film. ... full review
So-So, by Suhani Singh, india today : ...A colourful character is made dull in Main Aur Charles. Exactly what makes him such a babe magnet is never quite understood. This Charles has got a lot of swag, but little substance. 2.5 stars for Main Aur Charles - solely for Randeep Hooda's efforts to carry the film on his shoulders. ... full review
So-So, by Shubha Shetty-Saha, MiD DAY : ...Supporting actors like Richa Chaddha and Adil Husaain are good, but fortunately or unfortunately they merge in the background as you can’t take your eyes off Hooda and his powerful performance. ... full review
So-So, by Jaidev Hemmady, Movie Talkies : ...Had the film attempted to do something more beyond highlighting the persona that Sobhraj presented to the world at large, Main Aur Charles would have been a delightful watch. ... full review
So-So, by Saibal Chatterjee, NDTV : ...Bollywood biopics usually tend to be horrendously bloated and overwrought. Main Aur Charles is anything but. If that isn't enough of an incentive, watch it for Randeep Hooda's alluring French drawl and Adil Hussain's sturdy presence.... full review
So-So, by Sonia Chopra, Sify Movies : ...This was an attempt to make an engaging crime-drama, hoping to cash in on Charles Sobhraj's larger-than-life image. But the makers have taken truly explosive material and tamed it down, choosing to glamourize the villain to a nauseating level. The film had so much more potential! ... full review
So-So, by Jyothi Venkatesh, Star Blockbuster : ...Last Word: Though the film deserves viewing because of Randeep Hooda, on the flip-side, it strives hard to be high on style but low on content and that by itself is its major bane.... full review
So-So, by Meena Iyer, Times of India : ...Randeep is convincing; the uncanny physical resemblance and accent help bring Charles alive. Most of the supporting cast is good, but Adil Hussain is a notch above. ... full review
Thumbs down, by Martin D'Souza, Glamsham.com : ...But for me, I happie. Becoz, now I can go home. Charlie baba antics on screen are ovar. I give too starz bekoz I like muzik, and Charlie baba's spectacles! | ... full review
Thumbs down, by Sweta Kaushal, Hindustan Times : ...Main Aur Charles gains some momentum in the second half and gives us a closer look at Shobhraj, the man, but does not dig deeper into his psyche or reveals much about him. You should avoid this film at all costs: The narrative offers nothing at all and despite the good performances, badly-sketched characters leave little for the actors to do. ... full review
Thumbs down, by Surabhi Redkar, koimoi : ...Main Aur Charles is too gimmicky and hence even though not Randeep’s but the film’s charm wears off pretty soon. It fails to come across as a potent criminal drama and so for it’s loose treatment it gets a 2/5 from me. ... full review
Thumbs down, by Uday Bhatia, Live Mint : ...Hooda’s Sobhraj is a cipher, a beautiful surface with no indication of the emotions—if any—that are raging underneath. Towards the end, there’s a scene with Kanth and Sobhraj talking in the inspector’s office, the criminal telling the cop about the pleasures of doing wrong. The words themselves are banal, but the look on Hooda’s face in that instant is transporting. It was the only moment when I felt like subscribing to the cult of Sobhraj. ... full review
Ujjawal_Trivedi: Just watched Prawaal Raman @RandeepHooda @RichaChadha_ @tiscatime starrer Main aur Charles really loved it its a must must watch
theprogrammerin: Main Aur Charles.. #Recommended
Shauryashaurya2: Main aur Charles... An interesting watch. Randeep hooda is phenomenal as charles.
Sa_Tea_: Brilliant performances by Randeep Hooda & Adil Hussain as Charles and Amod Kanth in 'Main aur Charles '. Paisa Wasool movie
rony619619: Wow Richa Chadha damn hot.. Main aur Charles is nice story
PavanAtukuri: Sex or coffee? Main aur Charles is a must watch...terrific performances from @_AdilHussain @RichaChadha_ and @RandeepHooda
kyokenw: Randeep Hooda's Acting Makes 'Main Aur Charles' Worth a Watch
KamathGurudutt: MAIN AUR CHARLES: 3.5/5 Good film on the fugitive Charles Shobraj. Good story, acting, direction, photography and music. Gripping thriller.
kadakiakashish9: Main aur charles releasing today don't miss to watch it
javeeth: Main Aur Charles : Well made ! Fabulous on screen and classy 70s-80s feel. Fun watch based on Charles Sobhraj’s life.
iamit94: Awesome movie ☺#main aur Charles# @RandeepHooda
hamidchowdhary: Main aur charles stuck on my mind.. will go for a second inning just to hear parieee..s & @RichaChadha_ you were raw, powerful and natural.
gayatri_gauri: #RandeepHooda rocks in #Mainaurcharles.Hot and dangerous.https://t.co/FiGzVc3tvT
DravaspS: What an #eccentric #performance by #Randeep #Hooda in Main Aur #Charles! #Hats off to the #writer and the #team! #mind #boggling #bollywood
DeShobhaa: Despite an incoherent script and strange editing, I enjoyed 'Main Aur Charles'. Especially that wicked , little twist in the end.
boogerworm: Please go watch Main aur Charles *swoons over Randeep Hooda*
BloodyKamina: Last night I saw Main aur Charles. Nice Movie. You should watch with your Family : Arvind Kejriwal
bhatktiaatma: watch main aur charles for randeep n adil n watch @KanuBehl titli for whole cinematic experience.disturbing beauty. Dont miss.
bhargavsidpara: main aur charles.what a film and performances by everyone and the man himself randeep hooda or should i call charles..
arkadg1991: Main aur Charles.. @RandeepHooda Simply excellent as Charles. what a performance!! Evil is good. Must watch. Loved it! #MainAurCharles
anil_bhujel: Main Aur Charles a bit of more praising to Charles Shovraj & not showing arrest in Nepal are not digestible but very good job by Randip.
Waziiir: Randeep Hooda shines in Main aur Charles. The movie is bang average tho.
theshahofblah: Main Aur Charles Movie Review (3.0 Stars)
sparrowiny: Movie Review: 'Main Aur Charles' Is Lifted By Randeep Hooda's Superb Performance
i_Arhaan: Saw "Main Aur Charles" messy screenplay . Excellent performance by randeep, adil n richa Overall Watchable .
DipakKumarDoley: Watched "Main Aur Charles"...pretty gud job by Randeep Hooda, he luks too hot in it while d movie is a one-time-watch...
vicramb: So, Main Aur Charles. Some better writing, and it could have been a true crime classic.
thelawofmurphy: Main aur Charles is such a lost opportunity - awesome real life story but movie misses the mark. Loose story, un-engaging characters.
swapanseth: Walked out of Main aur Charles. A disaster. How could anyone bugger up a subject like Sobhraj?
surajlabade1: Just watch main aur charles...feeling like 10 year's sentense in Tihar jail..!!
ShettyONTHErun: Main Aur Charles is a downer, too long..and just plays on one part of his life....and just drags on till the end to kick off..not much.
neonsensical: Watched Main Aur Charles. Terrible direction/screenplay/editing and general homework wrt what the 80s looked like.
20hiry: Main Aur Charles review: Randeep Hooda has it, needed a better film
This page has additional observations, other than the ones noted in the main review.