Being a science student, the concept of time travel has always been intriguing. Just imagine the permutations and combinations that could transpire, if this concept beyond a few pages of a quantum physics textbook, was put to use. And now the other side of me, the movie buff has also witnessed some timeless classics in the time travel genre. Dark and Interstellar are the ones that top the list and I highly recommend these! But(and there is a but here), time travel as a concept has not being explored too vividly in our country. Infact, it is a genre that we have miserably failed at. Love Story 2050 and Action Replay are prime examples of how frivolous the interesting topic of time travel has been portrayed here! And so this week is another attempt at it, a 4 episode web series on Sony Liv called JL50. Is it the step in the right direction, lets find out!
JL 50 follows the story of a flight that crashes mysteriously 35 years after its take off. Is it a case of conspiracy or time travel? The story had all the ingredients to keep you guessing. The screenplay is its strongest point here. In the interest of the story, I will not reveal much here. But it is short and crisp and to the point. The twists and turns will surely keep you invested, there is quite some content available for science lovers. And at no point do you feel like ‘kuch bhi, aisa thodi hota hai”. Also, the city of Kolkata(with its heritage structures and the iconic taxis) automatically adds that flavor and texture to this thriller! On the downside, the Bollywood-like pre-climax could have been better and a little more layered. Just wonder if there was another way out of this rabbit hole? But taking nothing away from its journey! The dialogues are on point and one of them particularly stands out and is relevant(in the third episode, let me know if you spot it😊). The music, a mixture of Bengali folk and Grunch, is outstanding and definitely adds another narrative layer! If anything, the VFX stands out like a sore thumb😥! Director Shailender Vyas has done a phenomenal job with a subject that is yet to ‘take off’ in our country!
The ensemble cast deserves a huge round of applause here. Amrita Chattopadhyay as Shriparna shines in a cameo. Rajesh Sharma as Gaurango is a treat to watch! Piyush Mishra who is one of my favourite actors, as B C Mitra defines the evil with a lot of madness and eccentricity. I wished to see more of him here in a touch underwritten role! Pankaj Kapur as Subroto Das is so underrated and it is just a wonderfully portrayed character. Ritika Anand as Bihu is another good find here. She brings a certain amount of calmness to her character. Abhay Deol, we know has the ability to make the wackiest of choices. Some do pay off while some don’t. But he is never afraid of trying something different. And he is outstanding as Shantanu who is the investigating officer here. The audience is witness to the drama through his eyes and his character will keep you hooked and booked!
JL 50 is the step in the right direction in the time travel genre. A few technical aspects might be a little weak but this is a monumental effort as far as the content is concerned. Another winner from Sony Liv. Highly Highly Recommended!