Mumbai, 14 Jun 2020 13:45 IST
Starring Mandana Karimi and Karanvir Bohra, this Hindi web-series is difficult to take seriously.
Welcome to Kathmandu. We don’t know what image you have in your mind of the Nepalese capital, but according to Hardik Gajjar’s Hindi web-series The Casino, it houses a number of wealthy, influential and evil businessmen and politicians.
Trying to explain the plot of The Casino is a challenging task. The web-series is about a son who tries to safeguard his father’s casino from quite a few of his enemies. What we see mostly is that every character is trying to deceive someone or the other. In fact, people keep changing sides so frequently that you lose track who is on which side.
So it might be better to just look at the characters. Shiv Marwah (Sudhanshu Pandey) owns the most happening casino in Kathmandu called The Celebre. It’s an ideal place for the city's elite to spend an evening of bliss.
Marwah takes farsightedness to another level. So, when Kathmandu's mayor (Rajesh Sharma) visits his casino for the first time, he gets him embroiled in an MMS scandal and keeps the footage. For leverage, you see.
We are initially told that Rehana (Mandana Karimi) is the star dancer at the casino. Then we find out she is also Marwah’s keep. And she also manages the casino. Talk about multi-tasking!
Marwah’s wife, who makes a tiny appearance, is the benchmark for innocence. When she spots Rehana and Marwah getting intimate, she is shocked. Despite Rehana having been at The Celebre for years, she never knew about the ‘closeness’ she shares with her husband. It is also not as if Marwah’s wife never visited the casino.
Vicky Marwah (Karanvir Bohra) is Shiv’s son who isn’t fond of the casino. Whenever he visits The Celebre, he is seen with Rehana. In fact, though she is Shiv’s keep, she is seen spending more time with Vicky. Also, Vicky has no problem accepting Rehana’s love though she is his father’s mistress. Sharing is caring, perhaps.
That’s not all. Vicky is so stupid that he doesn’t realize that a person close to him is the culprit, something you, as the viewer, can guess instantly.
Camila (Aindrita Ray) enters out of the blue when she bangs her scooty with Vicky’s car. It is Camila’s fault but she threatens to file a fake sexual harassment complaint against Vicky if he doesn’t pay her Rs20,000. The tragedy is that you realize how wrong this is but Vicky doesn’t.
Strangely, Camila soon starts working at the casino. It appears that her major task is to give anonymous warnings to Vicky while wearing a mask. Vicky never asks her the reason for wearing a mask though the story takes place before COVID-19 had arrived in the world.
But the main character in The Casino happens to be secret cameras. Their only purpose is to capture people getting intimate. You literally lose track of the amount of secret footage of people making out throughout the 10 episodes.
Interestingly, Marwah has even kept hidden cameras in the changing room of the female dancers. However, the mayor’s bungalow has no CCTV cameras, though his neighbour, a common citizen, has.
The crazy content and characterization ensure that none of the performances stands out. Sudhanshu Pandey and Karanvir Bohra show some promise. Mandana Karimi spends most of her screen time manipulating or seducing someone.
From the long list of unintentionally funny moments, what takes the cake is when a group of fake cops gives away its bluff by wearing sports shoes with the police uniform! There is also a mental asylum that is more like a café where anybody can enter, create a scene and leave.
Try not to think if you do watch this web-series, else you might end up in an asylum yourself.
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