Through Amazon Prime Video's highly talked about and controversial web series Tandav, Sunil Grover changed the gears of the career vehicle, which was stuck in the images of Dr. Mashoor Gulati, Gutthi, and Rinku Bhabhi for a long time and came up with a face like, Which was completely different from his previous identities.
When the Sunflower web series came to the fore, it was expected that Sunil, who changed the gear of the career vehicle in Tandav, would feed some new gulp with Sunflower. This was also hoped because Sunflower has been written by Vikas Bahl, known for films like Queen and Super 30.
This is Vikas's OTT debut, but the pairing of Sunil and Vikas could not succeed in setting the color that was expected. Sunflower is one such murder mystery whose pace has been slowed down by its comedy. But the best actors have handled the series in many places, due to which the audience enjoys the thrill and humor in installments.
Sunflower Ki Katha Bhoomi is a residential society in Mumbai, whose name is Sunflower. The story mainly runs on three tracks. The first track is a police investigation of a murder in the society, with some people living in the society under its purview.
The second track is based on the tussle between the office bearers of the society, through which the backward thinking, prejudices and hypocracy of the so-called civilized society have been underlined. The third track traces the life of home-office loneliness of Sonu Singh, the main character of Sunflower, who is the biggest supplier of the humor side of the series.
Now if the story is to be told by including these three tracks, then it is as follows- Raj Kapoor (Ashwin Kaushal), who lives in a penthouse flat in Sunflower Society, dies one morning. The police arrive on the spot. The investigation reveals that Raj Kapoor died due to a chemical injection and the case turns into a murder.
Inspector Digendra (Ranveer Shorey) starts the investigation along with his associate Inspector Tambe (Girish Kulkarni) and the entire team. During the police interrogation, all the main characters of the society are introduced to the audience. During investigation, it is revealed that Raj Kapoor's wife had left him. This character is played by Shonali Nagrani. The police interrogate everyone in the society, but in view of the circumstances and evidence, Dr. Ahuja, Sonu Singh, Raj Kapoor's wife and the building's watchman are suspicious.
As the story progresses, Raj Kapoor's wife, who is leaving him and living with his brother, also comes under suspicion. The police have been investigating. All the suspects are repeatedly interrogated. The police get some such evidence, on the basis of which they believe that Sonu Singh is the murderer and they start looking for him. Sonu gets entangled in some other developments. The police think that he is absconding.
The cast of Sunflower has tried to handle the weak writing in many places, but when the lines are flabby, how long will the acting even support it. Sunil Grover's character is portrayed as a gullible yet successful salesman. Always smiling. Doesn't get angry, doesn't get upset. Whatever the circumstances. Sunil has played his character with utmost sincerity. Some of his words also create humour, but there are many such scenes which seem to have been fabricated to cache Sunil's past image.
Ashish Vidyarthi plays the character of Dilip Iyer, who wants to model this society according to Indian culture. It's a different matter that Iyer's idealism narrows down to divorced, transgender, Muslim, paan business, bachelor, working in the film or TV industry or in a live-in relationship.
There is no place for all these people in the kind of society Iyer wants to create. Iyer is running for chairman's election. His thinking is shown through interviews with tenants who come to the society from time to time to get flats and are rejected for various reasons. However, Iyer's daughter Paddy (Rhea Nalvade) is the biggest critic of his thinking.
Ashish Vidyarthi has given a successful expression in the character of Iyer. Being a South Indian character, the add of regionalism in his accent is an example of his excellent dialogue delivery. However, his character seems irritating instead of humourous at many places.
The third main character of the society is Dr. Ahuja, played by Mukul Chadha. Ahuja lives in front of Raj Kapoor's flat and the two do not get along at all. There was also a fight over parking. After the murder of Raj, the needle of suspicion is also on Ahuja.
Dr. Ahuja is a teacher by profession, who lives with wife Mrs. Ahuja (Radha Bhatt) and younger son. Ahuja, who pretends to be idealism outside the house, is submissive inside the house, conspiratorial and full of male conceit. Because of some activities of Ahuja, the police comes under suspicion.Dr. Mukul Chadha in the character of Ahuja and Radha Bhatt in the role of wife are fine.
Ranvir Shorey has done a great job in the role of Investigative Officer Digendra wearing thick lens glasses. Wearing thick lens glasses on his eyes, the consistency of his expressions is amazing. Colorful mood and always a mobile phone nerd in the character of Inspector Tambe, Girish Kulkarni's effortless performance can be said to be the highlight of the series.
At the same time, Annapurna Soni has grabbed attention in the role of talkative and vicious house maid. Sunflower has a strong technical side. Music, camera, costume all departments have done their job well. Rahul Sengupta's direction is also fine.
Sunflower's biggest problem is that it has tried to say and show too much at once, due to which the series seems to be scattered and scattered. The pace slows down due to a mix of murder-mystery thrills, situational comedy and social messages. There are moments in between when the murder-mystery plot goes in the background and everything else keeps happening. A total of 8 episodes, the series picks up pace in the last episodes and the audience can feel the thrill which was missing in the affair of comedy.
Cast - Sunil Grover, Ashish Vidyarthi, Ranvir Shorey, Girish Kulkarni, Mukul Chadha, Ashwin Kaushal, Radha Bhatt etc.
Director- Rahul Sengupta
Creator/Writer- Vikas BahlPlatform- ZEE5
Rating- **1/2 (2 and a half stars)