Lara Dutta and Rinku Rajguru treat the audience with their soulful performances
Anurag Singh Bohra | New Delhi
At times binge-watching may not serve the purpose during a prolonged quarantine, especially when most web content is based on dark genres it doesn’t give the feel-good escapism in the present times. “Hundred” a new action-comedy series streaming on Disney+Hotstar could be the best way towards finding your Zen or Ikigai (Japanese term for finding happiness in what you love) through an entertaining screenplay. The action-comedy starring Lara Dutta and Rinku Rajguru in stellar roles has enough thrills, humour, twists and turns to keep the audience engaged throughout the series.
Abhishek Dubey, Ruchi Narain, and Ashutosh Shah have scripted the series with a simple premise into a non-conventional plot. The characters of inspector Saumya and Netra Patil played by Dutta and Rajguru have been well crafted in order to have a way to a convincing narrative about the struggles of two women with contrasting personalities. The subtle nuances in the characterization are visible in the character portrayals of both Dutta and Rajguru.
Narain, Shah, and Taher Shabbir have co-directed the crime comic caper targeting a universal audience. In spite of a few cuss words, the makers have depicted issues such as infidelity, sex, surrogacy aesthetically without being overboard. Narian being both the scriptwriter and director has raised the issue of discrimination of females at home and workplace, sexism due to societal norms, yet not getting preachy. The engagement in the screenplay and direction make this one a worth watch.
Among the supporting cast, Sudhanshu Pandey as a senior police officer and Saumya’s husband Parvin has enacted his role with artistic finesse. Pandey is believable in his performance, perhaps one of the most noteworthy characters of his career. Parmeet Sethi as DCP Anshuman has yet again hit the bull’s eye with his grey character post-Special Ops. Sethi does justice to the evil boss Anshuman as he makes you cringe every time the actor appears in each frame. Karan Wahi does a fine job as he plays Haryanvi rapper-cum-police informer Manohar Dahiya aka Maddy. Wahi has the perfect timings while emoting his lines or diverse expressions. Only in a few scenes, Wahi’s Haryanvi accent seems stereotypical. Jayant Gadekar as senior police constable Diwakar Asole is both funny and hateful as the arrogant chauvinist who dislikes reporting under a female police inspector. Rohini Hattangadi as Parvin’s mother, again an annoying character takes a satirical jibe on orthodox societal norms.
Hattangadi embraces her character in a special appearance and adds up to the much-needed humour element. Rajeev Siddhartha as Shantanu Jha is an actor to watch out for. Not revealing much about the character in order to avoid spoilers. Jha’s dialogue delivery, emotional range, and on-screen chemistry with Rajguru are mesmerizing.
Dutta and Rajguru treat the audience with their soulful performances.
Volker Schellbach’s cinematography is spot on and is flawless in both close-ups and wide-angle shots. Tushar Parekh makes the best of his editing skills by ensuring a compact series that holds on to the audience’s interest from start till the end. Producers Narain, Shah, Shabbir, and Neelesh Bhatnagar have wisely managed the budget without compromising on the aesthetics.
In spite of a fresh concept, good storyline, and power-packed performances, the series somehow stumbles post episode 6. The screenplay and direction lose its grip leaving the sole responsibility on the actors. A compelling and captivating story about living life blissfully, risk-taking, seeking adventures, and most importantly, taking charge of your life.
A one-time watch during the lockdown 3.0.