Dahaad REVIEW: Sonakshi Sinha And Gulshan Devaiah Starrer Crime Drama Will Chill You To The Bones-Deets INSIDE

Check out the review of Sonakshi Sinha and Gulshan Devaiah’s recently released revenge drama ‘Dahaad’

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Dahaad REVIEW: Sonakshi Sinha And Gulshan Devaiah Starrer Crime Drama Will Chill You To The Bones-Deets INSIDE
Heartstopping in its depiction of savagery in the atmosphere of normalcy, Dahaad is the kind of rare engrossing thriller that makes you forgive all the excesses of exacerbated drama that we see in  OTT serials. Weird and wearisome were the words for Tooth Pari and Saas Bahu Aur Flamingo.
Dahaad puts the roar back into the  OTT  viewing experience. It is astutely written(by  Reema Kagti, Ritesh Shah, Zoya Akhtar) taking sharp U-turns in the narrative when you least expect them. For example, there is this nocturnal interlude(the series captures sounds and flavours of  a sweltering small town) somewhere in the mid-series where the protagonist  Anjali Bhaati sneak-peaks into a sinister van.

Suddenly she is pushed inside and driven off. It is a heart-in-the-mouth moment. But not meant to tease and provoke the audience. There are many shock waves running through the plot,as twenty-nine women get murdered by one man.  Vijay Varma plays the serial killer with a chilling equanimity. It is as if the man perpetrating this brutality is convinced he is doing society a  favour. This serial killer in a killer of serial, is unlike what Nawazuddin  Siddiqui would play. With Nawaz you would be able to spot diabolic evil from miles away.

This is more like your friendly slightly nondescript neighbour who has an axe to grind with women who opt to elope with him.
“Good women don’t run away with strangers,” Anand Swarnakar tells the cop Bhaati at the end Which brings me to my one major quibble against the otherwise-thoughtful writing. The series, set in a small monkey-infested town in Rajasthan, goes for patriarchy’s throat with a directness that seems way too fashionable.

The peppery plot is  filled with men who are either misogynists or cowards or both but constanly inflicting emotional  and physical pain on the woman around them. The one seeming  exception is Anjali’s superior Devilal Singh(Gulshan Devaiah, restrained and effective) But his  empowering lectures to his daughter sound like WhatsApp forward messages, though ineffective for their generic thrust.

Also, what was  the  need for  such  a lengthy series? Why is every series given so much space when the story can be wrapped up in much less time?  In this case though , the prolonged duration doesn’t sit uneasily on the dark yet well-balanced narrative which  swerves through a number of unexplored  lanes before braking to a halt.

Reema Kagti and Ruchika Oberoi  direct the  spry material with a relentlessly unwavering glance at a society that knowingly or unknowingly gives  rise to a closet monster like Anand. In the given context  of polluted patriarchy,the most interesting character is  the cop Kailash Parghi, played  thoughtfully  by Sohum Shah. Parghi  suffers  from an inferiority complex  at work. Although he is  Anjali’s senior he is treated  like a subordinate. At home his wife is pregnant with a child that Parghi doesn’t want.

Parghi sorts out his inner confusion. So does the series. It is an exhausting but exhilarating series that creates  ruminative ripples across its storytelling skyline.