City of Dreams: Web Series Review
Cast: Priya Bapat, Eijaz Khan, Siddharth Chandekar, Sachin Pilgaonkar, Atul Kulkarni, Sandeep Kulkarni, Uday Tikekar, Vishwas Kini, Amrita Bagchi, Pavleen Gujral, Flora Saini, Rishi Deshpande, Aayam Mehta.
Director: Nagesh Kukunoor.
Genre: Crime, Drama.
Release Date: 3rd May 2019.
As Mumbai’s renowned politician Ameya Rao Gaikwad recovers through an assassination attempt, his political empire is left unprotected. As his successors- a headstrong son, Ashish Gaikwad, and a sane daughter, Poornima Gaikwad– battle for their right to the coveted position, ugly truths unveil, turning friends into foe and causing blood to flow. It is blood war that decides who is the rightful heir.
- City of Dreams is a political thriller, in the backdrop of Mumbai city, which the evergreen quality of old school drama. It’s a power game as old as time, with the touch of modern complexities.
- Political family drama is not a new concept for Indian audience; we’ve grown up hearing stories of Mahabharata and Ramayana, not to forget the real life stories of political families. Power can corrupt all and any relation, and blood has rarely been thick enough to withstand its allure. What makes City of Dreams stand out among it all is the story and its execution. The city’s Godfather is shot, leaving the city and children squabbling for power. It sounds cliché, but Kukunoor makes it work really well.
- City of Dreams feels relatable for many reasons. Siddharth’s Ashish and Priya’s Poornima are squabbling siblings, their back-and-forth seems real, despite the heated situation they seem to be in. The characterisation of Mumbai as a city is done in a uniquely subtle yet impactful way- through a love affair between a harried non-Mumbai guy who is still not able to understand the way of Mayanagari, and an escort from the red-light district. The sprawling vista of the city’s known and popular places also reinforces its importance in the theme.
- Parallel to the sibling rivalry, there are various plots running along- one of the Wasim Khan, of Gautam-Katrina, and Purushottam. They all blend in and contribute to the ultimate plot.
- The title track is an attention-grabbing piece with visuals and lyrics that sum up the essence of the series supported with thrilling music. Throughout the series as well, the background music works as a perfect mood sound, highlighting the sequences.
- The series dabbles in all genres- mystery, thriller and drama. The one twists after another truly lives you reeling, even with all the foreshadowing done before, giving them a touch of authenticity.
- With all the veterans like Atul Kulkarni, Sandeep Kulkarni and Sachin Pilgaonkar putting on their A game, Priya Bapat steals the show with her character arc. Poornima is smart, strong, and determined, without a fault, and Priya grips her character by throat and drives it home.
- Apart from the ugly politics, City of Dreams also flittingly yet impactfully touches upon topics such as feminism, patriarchy, and LGBTQ+.
- Flora Saini’s character as the mysterious woman in Purushottam’s life, though works as a catalyst in his character arc, we expected her to turn out be vital in Ameya’s assassination or part of some takeover strategy. Her sudden appearance and disappearance can be a little disappointing.
City of Dreams is a political drama that appeals to the drama-craving Indian soul. Worth a watch.
- City of Dreams marks Nagesh Kukunoor’s second venture into the world of web series, previously he co-directed ALTBalaji’s The Test Case. Incidentally, the series also stars Atul Kulkarni.
- Siddharth Chandekar and Priya Bapat are the leading names in the regional Marathi entertainment industry, and City of Dreams marks their debut in the Web Entertainment.
- Sachin Pilgaonkar was previously seen on the Web with Y Films in Sex Chat With Pappu & Papa.
Watch The Trailer Here:
Also Read: Baarish: Web Series Review