Digital Review: ‘The Gone Game’ (Voot)

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As more and more moving image creators look to online streaming platforms to release their work, there’s no doubt in saying viewers are more spoilt for choice as to what to watch than ever before. However, ever so often something comes along that has everyone talking, and Voot Select’s big presentation hopes to be just that. Depicting a story that is based around being in lockdown during the coronavirus pandemic, director Nikhil Nagesh Bhat brings to his audience a gripping and thrilling story with ‘The Gone Game’, that will have everyone at the edge of their seats.

With everyone placed all over India, the Gujral family, like the majority, ensure they connect with each other through video calls. With them all having their own opinions about the pandemic, their happy family soon turns tragic when son Sahil (Arjun Mathur) dies of the virus, leaving wife Suhani (Shriya Pilgaonkar) all by herself in their house, where strange things begin to happen. Furthermore, after receiving a phone call from her dead brother’s phone, sister Amara (Shweta Tripathi Sharma) decides to investigate and she finds there’s a lot more to her brother’s death than they were given to believe.

Having been shot during the pandemic, it’s hard to believe how director Nikhil Nagesh Bhat managed to create such great content whilst all his cast were in separate remote locations. Without the freedom of being able to use different styles of shooting methods, Bhat has still done a fantastic job in taking a well thought-out concept and projecting it on screen perfectly. Being totally at the mercy of his actors, Bhat had to strip back and use basic directional skill to the best of his ability and made a series that is definitely worth a watch.

The casting for this series had to be perfect for something that was to be shot in such a way, with actors who are able to own the screen on their own. And the casting team failed to disappoint. Sanjay Kapoor as the shameless and charming Rajeev Gujral is befitting for such a role. He is the chameleon of his craft, completely surrendering his character to every situation that changes throughout the story. Mathur is as fitting with his character as his co-stars and, though his on-screen time is limited, he is the one person that is constantly thought about. Mother and wife Suneeta Gujral. played by Ruksar Rehman. is also entertaining to watch. The doting mother who takes extra care with everything, it’s easy to see how she plays her character from her own heart. Pilgaonkar and Tripathi Sharma also give brilliant performances, giving their viewers a lot to think about as the story gets deeper and deeper into its plot. Both of them, along with Indraneil Sengupta constantly have their audiences guessing what their motives are. A special mention has to go to Dibyendu Bhattacharya in the role as the convincing Subhash Chaudry. Being a first suspect when things go wrong, Bhattarcharya plays the perfect potential villain. Not only with his ability to play on the minds of the characters, but the audiences themselves.

Here is a series that has been projected extremely well, and the makers have done an extraordinary job in producing a successful show effortlessly despite all the setbacks they had to face. When watching the show, the viewers find themselves completely forgetting that none of the actors actually share the screen together, and all interaction is done via a phone or laptop. Though it starts off a little slow, and the story picks up quickly later on, which only makes the viewer wish the series was a little longer. It’s an enticing show, where every cliffhanger left after each episode is perfectly placed. If his previous projects haven’t got him the recognition he deserves, this one is a great example of Bhat’s talent. It’s a good watch and one that is placed perfectly for online streaming. Each actor is a joy to watch, and prove their talent extremely well, despite having the burden of having each of their scenes completely on themselves. Easy to follow, yet exciting to watch, here is a show that will definitely attract the masses.

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