Name: It Happened In Calcutta
Cast: Karan Kundra (Ronobir Chatterjee), Naghma Rizwan (Kusum)
Genre: Romance, Drama
Ratings: 3.5 stars
Director: Ken Ghosh
Love is the nectar of life. You cannot live without love. Those who have not received love, dream of fantasy love stories. While others who are grateful for their love, tries to make it more special by spending time and planning surprises. For all the love birds, ZEE5 has brought you a beautiful periodic love saga, all set in ‘The City of Joy’ i.e., Kolkata.
It Happened in Calcutta is a web series that is presented by ALTBalaji. In the recent past, Ekta Kapoor announced the cast of the web series. While the male lead is the popular television face Karan Kundra, the female lead of the show would be played by a new face that is Naghma Rizwan. The period-drama premiered on February 29, 2020.
With an IMDb rating of 9 out 10, this ZEE5 Original romantic series has two ideas – first, it’s a story that managed to leave a mark during the times of war, epidemic and political unrest. The ’60s and ’70s were the time when India was rocked by the cataclysmic India-Pakistan war compiled with the helpless Cholera disease that killed many at that time.
Second, it’s a periodic love drama based in the era of ’60s and 70’s that not only created memories but also impacted history.
It’s 1962 and the show’s protagonists Ronobir Chatterjee, Kusum Ganguly, and Ratan Bagchi have just joined Calcutta’s most revered medical school. The three are as different as chalk and cheese. Ronobir is not the one for commitment but knows how to win the heart of the women in college. Kusum is the normal geek – ambitious, firm about her objectives without the smallest trace of interruption – until Ronobir enters her reality. Ratan is keen on Kusum, in any case, to his mistake, is generally friend-zoned by the latter.
Kusum getting enchanted by Ronobir’s flamboyance and winds up falling head over heels in love with him. And afterward the inescapable occurs. She gets double-crossed and cheated and winds up losing confidence and faith in love. A heartbreak and 9 years later, when their paths cross again, sparks fly again, but will Kusum ever trust Ronobir again when he claims to be a changed man?
The performances are strong and commendable from Karan and Naghma and the duo gives their best to get the body language right when it comes to behaving and emoting as two people in love around the 60’s era. Kundra’s bell-bottoms and long hair, and Rizwan’s umbrella cut sleeves did little to add to the authenticity of the show. While Karan does his best to play the ‘baddie’, debutante Naghma’s screen presence will not make you feel that she is a newcomer. In an ideal world, Harmanjeet Singha (as Ratan Bagchi) deserved to have been the protagonist of the series. Though, there are some interesting layers in his character that the makers should explore for the next season.
With regards to the period show, one summons pictures of excessive outfits and arrangements with over-the-top art directional sources inputs. Often, makers neglect to keep the harmony between expanded reality and reality however it appears as though the balance has been settled by Ken Ghosh.
The whole story manages how destiny and love can endure a shot because of strife in the general public, an adept impression of the present occasions. The background score is commendable and utilization of mesmerizing and calming Bengali tracks like ‘Ekla Cholo Re’ just add to the feature of the show. It acts as a metaphor for the show narrative. The creators tried to instill history with the 1971 Indo-Pakistani war, communism, Naxals, floods, and cholera.
If you are looking for something periodic or little from mid-century, then watch ‘It Happened in Calcutta’ to get the perfect twist of history blending with love. You might just get reminded of the beautiful ‘Once Upon A Time in Mumbai’ when it comes to certain scenes.