Taish Review

A good revenge-drama that stumbles due to bad editing

Rony Patra -

Taish Review

What is the story about?

A single act of violence at a wedding, triggered by childhood trauma, kickstarts a bloody quest for revenge between a genteel Hindu family and a syndicate of Punjabi gangsters in the UK.

Analysis

One of the highlights of Bejoy Nambiar's eclectic career as a filmmaker is how he is drawn to the idea of revenge , be it in Shaitan, David or Wazir. In Taish, too, he touches upon the idea of how a single mistake can kickstart mayhem at the drop of a hat. But Taish is also a fascinating tale about male friendships and the crisis of masculinity, which only knows the taste of blood as the method to heal broken hearts. Writers Anjali Nair, Kartik R. Iyer and Nicola Louise Taylor partner Nambiar in building up this intriguing world. And perhaps the six-episode format works better for this story than that of a single film. The episodic structure allows Nambiar's storytelling to breathe and devotes time to the various characters, who are struggling with their own demons, even as they bay for blood.
 
Having said that, this is a dense story, filled with multiple subplots over a two-year period. The first three episodes are mostly told as a flashback. But the fast, intermittent cuts rapidly muddle the viewer’s understanding of the entire timeline, even though the story gets gripping in the second half. Otherwise, this is a fascinating series, and another intriguing narrative from Nambiar.

Performances

Taish has a solid ensemble cast that fires on all cylinders. Jim Sarbh and Kriti Kharbanda play Rohan and Arfa, who share a hot-and-cold romance with each other. Pulkit Samrat does justice to his role as Sunny, Rohan’s hotheaded friend whose mistake kickstarts the entire saga. Abhimanyu Singh is suitably menacing as Kuljinder, the head of the Southall crime syndicate. Sanjeeda Shaikh plays Jahaan, the wife of Kuljinder, whose heart beats for someone else. But it is Harshvardhan Rane as Pali, Kuljinder's younger brother and Jahaan's paramour, who walks away with the plaudits thanks to his intensity. Other cast members such as Saloni Batra, Ankur Rathee, Zoa Morani, Saurabh Sachdeva and others excel in their roles too.

Music & Other Departments

Harshvir Oberoi's photography is eye-filling, and captures the intrigue of wedding celebrations as easily as the crime-filled streets of Southall. Priyank Prem Kumar's editing, however, mars the storytelling and gives you a headache after a point. Mandar D. Nagaonkar's production design is superb. Ian Van Temperley choreographs the action sequences efficiently. Gaurav Godkhindi and Govind Vasantha deserve brownie points for the terrific background score. Vasantha's composition, “Re Bawree”, is an instant earworm.

Highlights

The action sequences and confrontation scenes are well-canned.

Drawbacks

The editing is the only thing weighing down this entire enterprise.

Did I enjoy it?

Yes, in spite of the editing.

Do I recommend it?

It’s great for a one-time watch. My suggestion would be to watch the series—it would be a less exhausting and more engaging watch than the film.


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