a suitable boy
Well, the grand weekend is finally coming to an end. The major attraction of the weekend was indeed Mirzapur 2 but there were a couple of other releases too. The Foot Fairy review is out and now I have just finished watching the third new release this weekend, A Suitable Boy on Netflix. Well technically this had released sometime back on BBC but it has premiered on Netflix this weekend. What instantly caught my attention was the stellar cast. Is the series worth your time, stay tuned.
Based on a 1400 page novel of the same name by Vikram Seth, A Suitable Boy is the story of four families against the backdrop of a newly independent India and a crucial period in Indian history. The writers clearly had their task cut out of adapting one of the longest books in history into a six part series. Now, I haven’t read the book and so I have no reference of the details in it, I can safely say that the story is quite good. The screenplay is a slow burn and if you enjoy dramas that move at a leisurely pace and majorly through conversations that you will definitely enjoy it. On the flipside, the language wherein the characters speak in British English was a slight distraction to begin with but that soon faded behind some of the relevant political plotpoints in the screenplay which I secretly hoped were fleshed out a bit more. And the main drama will touch you in the end and leave you with a smile on your face. The dialogues are good and I would encourage the audience to view the series in its original language despite it being a distraction. The hindi dubbing is way off! The music and the BGM are one of the strongest pillars here and you would find yourself searching for its album long after the series has ended. Director Mira Nair is a veteran and a visionary in every sense of the word and her direction is just perfect – enough drama to keep you invested, subtle in parts and slightly dramatic in others, a perfect concoction!
Yes, now to the stellar cast to see how they have performed. There are many actors that have made their presence felt here like Randeep Hooda, Ranvir Shorey, Vinay Pathak, Vijay Raaz, Manoj Pahwa, Sheeba Chadha even Kulbhushan Kharba, all of whom are perfectly cast. Rasika Dugal as Savita is such a fine actress and she gets her moment to shine. Joyeeta Dutta as Tasneem is gentle to the eye. Vivaan Shah as Varun is quietly confident. Sharvari Deshpande as Malati is pretty good. Vijay Varma as Rasheed is such a fine actor, the layers in his character are perfectly portrayed. Mikhail Sen as Amit is wonderfully restrained and some of his poetry that he recites is indeed beautiful. Shahana Goswami is a fine actress and here again she perfectly fits the bill as Meenakshi, a character who is borderline snooty. Vivek Gombar playing her onscreen husband Arun has a sense of dry humour associated with him which he delivers perfectly. Shubham Saraf as Firoz is such an endearing character that you will fall in love with him. Danesh Razvi as Kabir Durrani is quietly charming. Namit Das as Haresh is another character who is vulnerable from the inside and beautifully portrayed. Ram Kapoor as Mahesh Kapoor and Aamir Bashir as Nawab Sahib are seasoned actors and they have such amazing command over hindi and english. Both of them are outstanding. Mahira Kakkar as Rupa is outstanding in a character that demanded a bit of melodrama yet subtlety on humour. Tabu as Saeeda Bai looks so beautiful and a wonderfully restrained character delivered to the T by her. Ishaan Khatter as Maan is a supremely gifted performer and he is just brilliant here. These are the choices(along with Beyond the Clouds) that I would want him to make instead of mindless commercial entertainers like Khaali Peeli which have nothing new to offer. Tanya Maniktala as Lata has such a pretty smile that could light up your day. She is excellent here and she indeed has come a long way from FLAMES.
A Suitable Boy is quietly charming and poetic. A different kind of storytelling that will surely impress you. If you enjoy commercial potboilers and cannot stand slow burners, then you can skip this. Available on Netflix and Highly Recommended!