City Of Dreams Season 3(Disney+ Hotstar)
Seldom, if ever, does a series remain constantly watchable and relevant even as it hops skips and jumps from season to season.
City Of Dreams produced by Applause Entertainment has done it! Now in its third instalment, the political drama about a powerful family of politicians and the internecine power-play within the family dynamics,remains thoroughly engaging.
Although sprawling into nine episodes the space given to Nagesh Kukunoor and his co-director Ranjeet Jha, is never abused. Moreover the non-linear editing(by Farooq Hundekar) is conceptually a winner, as it ensures we remain invested even when the characters dither in their power dynamics.
The plot is piping-hot from the first episode where somnambulant cop Wasim Khan(Eijaaz Khan, constantly conferring a capricious comportment on his character) tracks down the political heir-apparent Poornima Gaekwad to a S & M den in Bangkok. When Wasim finds Poornima, she is suicidal wreck. Her healing process takes time.No hurry. There is plenty of time here.
As the grieving mother delirious with guilt for her only son’s death, Priya Bapat is as riveting the third time around as she was in the first two seasons.Her emotive strength sublimates the character . Ms Bapat gives to the mother’s grief a sense of irreversible doom.This woman won’t stop at anything to atone for her family’s guilt.
Atul Kukrani as Poornima’s unscrupulously ambitious father Ameya Rao Gaekwad who won’t stop at anything to gain the power throne,is one of the most complex political characters we have seen on the digital platform. He is selfserving and nakedly so. There is a brilliant lengthy sequence where after sex, Ameya is shown the mirror by his ambitious but not ruthless mistress(played with remarkable restrain and understanding by Divya Seth).
Here we see Kulkarni’s ugly character crumble in shame and then pick up the pieces of his smacked ego before leaving the bedroom.The mix of the bedroom and boardroom makes for a heady concoction . City Of Dreams shows up the nightmare of power politics without tripping over the sordid machinations of the characters.
No one, not even the grieving mother Poornima, plays the victim card here.Every character is a hungry for power, none more so than Jagdish (Sachin Pilgaonkar) who is a doting father-figure one minute and selfserving creep the next.There is one sequence where exposes his fangs before his wife,which could have been handled with more tact.
Overall there is a likeable unpredictability in the plot’s buildup to its impressively constructed climax. I never thought I would say this. But I am actually looking forward to the fourth season.