Show: City of Dreams Season 2
Cast: Atul Kulkarni, Priya Bapat, Eijaz Khan, Sachin Pilgaonkar, Ankur Rathee, Sushant Singh
Director: Nagesh Kukunoor
OTT: Disney+ Hotstar
Rating: 2.5 Moons
Political dramas are one of the most lucrative genres in Indian entertainment industry and we’ve seen several films and shows taking the tried-and-tested route of dirty politics, family secrets and cutthroat competition to secure that elusive seat of power. However, City of Dreams Season 2 treats Maharashtra state politics like a joke, with ample amount of violence and secrets coming out in public places like parks and bars. The series falls victim to too many sub-plots with a grand scheme that fails to leave an impact.
Starring Priya Bapat, Atul Kulkarni, Eijaz Khan, Sachin Pilgaonkar, Ankur Rathee, Sushant Singh, City of Dreams Season 2 takes off from where the first season ended. Poornima Gaekwad (Priya Bapat) has taken up the interim Chief Minister’s post after eliminating her brother from her path. He father Ameya Rao Gaekwad (Atul Kulkarni) has recovered from an assassination attempt but is wheelchair bound. However, she is troubled by visions of her murdered brother Ashish and needs to prove her competence to keep the Chief Ministerial seat. On the other hand, with elections imminent, Ameya needs to pull out every dirty trick in his book to ensure that he gets back in the thick of things and can dethrone his daughter, including releasing ghosts of her romantic pasts.
Meanwhile, there are other players in the game like the ruthless Ramnik (Shishir Sharma), a builder who wants to snag the lucrative Mumbai Metro Railway contract by leveraging Poornima’s bisexuality. Some of the cast reprise their roles such as the loyal accountant Puroshottam (Sandee Kulkarni), the honeytrap Asha (Flora Saini), Karnataka don Jagan (Suhant Singh) and former CM Jagdish Gurav (Sachin Pilgaonkar) and loser cop turned political hopeful Wasim Khan (Eijaz Khan) who is an ally of Poornima’s. New entrants in the show include idealist youth leader Mahesh (Adinath Kothare), a construction company’s heir Arvind (Ankur Rathee) and his fiancée Tanya (Shriyam Bhagnani).
The plot concerns a desperate power grab between Poornima and Ameya and the difficult father-daughter relationship that they share. The show is as much about politics as it is about patriarchy with the wounded party chief trying to claw his way back into power and prominence with the characters getting embroiled in their family feud. Despite a wayward script, Priya Bapat, Atul Kulkarni, Sandeep Kulkarni, Adinath Kothare and Sachin Pilgaonkar impress with their performance. Eijaz Khan is also commendable as well as Ankur Rathee.
Director Nagesh Kukunoor and co-writer Rohit Banawlikar amp up the drama with several sub-plots that overcrowd the narrative and in many instances kill the suspense. The 10 episodes series with 40 minutes each stretches the story to breaking point making it a tedious watch.
PeepingMoon.com gives City of Dreams Season 2, 2.5 Moons.