Patal Lok is a dark and gritty crime thriller that is brilliantly written , directed and performed.
It not only engages you in its mystery and chase but also absorbs you completely in its characters ,some black , some white but mostly all shades of grey !
While on one end , we see the nexus between politics, media and police, the other end takes you on a visual tour of the underbelly of the society, exposing the ugliness and the harsh reality of our rural and urban hells. While the wild goose chase keeps us on tenterhooks , the superbly etched characters draw us deep into their world. This aspect places this thriller notches above the usual fair.
Cast – Jaideep Ahlawat, Ishwak Singh , Neeraj Kabi, Gul Panag, Abhishek Banerjee
Created and Written By – Sudeep Sharma (Writer- NH10, Udta Punjab , Sonchiriya)
Directed by – Avinash Arun ( Cinematographer -Drishyam, Madaari , Hichki , Masaan)
And Prosit Roy ( Director -Pari , Asst director- Ek Thhi Daayan , Phillauri )
The story revolves around a down and out cop Choudhary( Jaideep Ahlawat ) landing a high profile case of assassination attempt of a famous journalist cum media personality.
Believing that there’s more to it than meets the eye, he continues to dig. In spite of all dead ends and departmental road blocks ,he gets driven into the maze, for this seems his only chance to redeem his career and esteem and prove himself to his family, his department and most importantly to his own self.
The four assassins who have been arrested have intriguing and moving stories of their own. What’s the story of the dreaded serial killer ? Are they really the high profile agents CBI paints them to be ? Who is the mind behind them ? Is Choudhary able to uncover the truth ?
Jaideep Ahlawat ( most prominently seen in Raazi ) gives an outstanding performance. In his embodiment of the frustrated policeman, he wows you with his body language and accent. His performance shines ,as an anguished man, as an empathetic colleague and boss , as a surprisingly accommodating spouse, as a harsh on the outside but concerned father.
Ishwak Singh (Ansari) is impressive in his restrained and quiet portrayal.
Abhishek Banerjee ( most prominently remembered for Stree) is chilling as the psychotic killer.
The entire creative team needs to be commended whether it is the writing or direction. And considering their superb backgrounds , it doesn’t come as a surprise. Sudip Sharma has done something amazing with the writing that makes us connect to each character. He has given such balanced strokes to each one that makes us see each of them as a person irrespective of the colour of their character.
Last but not the least ,Anushka needs to be lauded for the quality and range of content that she backs up.
This story of nine episodes , that completely sucks you in , is highly recommended and worth your time.