‘Kohrra’: Cast & Crew
Director: Randeep Jha
Cast: Vishal Handa, Ivantiy Novak, Barun Sobti, Suvinder Vicky, Rachel Shelley, Manish Chaudhary, Harleen Sethi, Saurav Khurana, Varun Badola
Available On: Netflix
Duration: 6 Episodes, Around 50 Minutes Each
An NRI is murdered just before his wedding in the countryside of Punjab. As the investigation unfolds, a world of deceit, secrets and the dramas of dysfunctional families are revealed. Two cops (Suvinder Vicky, and Barun Sobti) get deep into investigating the crime and soon enough layers after layers of generational misconduct start opening up. There are numerous skeletons that come out of the cupboard. Will the two cops finally be able to solve the crime? Will the murderer finally stand up? Will the families ever be the same? Well, for all that, you’ll have to watch ‘Kohrra’.
Suvinder Vicky is a revelation to watch. He comes in from nowhere with no baggage of past performances and gives out a character which is strong in his beliefs yet flawed in his own screwed-up ways. That dichotomy of emotions struggling to fight with each other and giving a repressed feel on the surface yet having such deeper connotations, just makes Suvinder Vicky the star to watch out for in the months to come.
Barun Sobti keeps scratching higher levels of performance with every show of his. After ‘Asur 2’, he comes up with such a unique character who is unknowingly funny, always sarcastic, yet loyal to the truest sense of the word. He knows the limitations of the character but also very well knows the strengths of the same, and he plays so well on the strengths that you barely remember that he is the second lead in the show. He is a treat to watch.
It pains to see such powerful performances all around and yet stellar actors like Manish Chaudhary, Varun Badola and Rachel Shelly totally wasted in such small characters. They definitely try and make the most of the screen time, but it would have been good to see their backstories or their mental state much more onscreen. It would have just given more depth to the web show.
Harleen Sethi has a smaller screen time, but she is such a powerhouse of varied emotions. The character is a textbook example of how to keep yourself restrained when playing a character which has so much emotional baggage. Despite having such a great opportunity to have emotional outbursts at every drop of a pin, she never let the highs and lows of the emotions overpower her performance. She shows that with subtlety as well a character can be played who’s stifling with emotional baggage.
‘Kohrra’: Script, Direction & Technical Aspects
The writing of the series by Gunjit Chopra, Sudip Sharma, and Diggi Sisodia is the best thing about ‘Kohrra’. The nuances that they’ve managed to bring into the story are what make it worth the watch. The character development is surely the best I’ve seen in a really long time. They’ve put time and effort into making sure every character, however small or large the screen time, is given a deep background and has their own personal baggage, which gets closure in the climax. The intrigue factor in each character hooks you on till the very end and that’s what is so good about the show.
Randeep Jha’s direction elevates the writing to a completely different level altogether. The way in which he has shown how every character has their own emotional baggage and they all deal with their own demons in their own personal way, that’s brilliant. At the outset, you would feel that it’s just a normal murder mystery, but slowly you’ll get to know that it’s much more than that. The way Randeep Jha has peeled layer after layer and opened up a new can of worms is simply awesome. From patriarchy to entitlement to childhood trauma – everything has found a space in his vision. By the time he takes you to the climax you’ve completely submitted yourself to his euphoric narrative and with the climax he just makes the pleasure euphoric. You’ll never be able to guess who is responsible for the murders and what’s going on under the sheets till the time you reach the climax.
Saurabh Monga’s cinematography is brilliant to the extent that you’re feeling like you’re right in the middle of the entire chaos that’s happening. Showing the exotic locales of rural Punjab to giving you roaring chase and gunfight sequences, you’re just left in awe with the brilliance of his cinematography.
Sanyukta Kaza’s editing is crisp and so taut that it’s difficult for you to even think of leaving the show in the middle and going for a pee. It’s that engaging. Keeping it to just 6 episodes was a masterstroke. It gets your heart racing and keeps you hooked till the very end.
The music and background score by Naren Chandavarkar and Benedict Taylor are definitely worthy to be in ‘Kohrra’. The score definitely has an ingrained feel of Punjab which makes your visual imagination of the show much more pleasurable.
‘Kohrra’: Can Kids Watch It?
‘Kohrra’ is one of the best web shows to have come out this year. It’s dark, it's gripping, it’s thrilling to the very end, and an excellent murder mystery. It ends up making your mind question so many things, the answers of which lie in real-life relationships that you have with your relatives. Leave everything and go watch ‘Kohrra’. I am going with 4.5 stars.