We are introduced to three different worlds which literally means Swarg Lok where high-class people live, Dharti Lok where middle class folks stays and the Paatal Lok where criminals, murderers and evil thrive. It is the third world, Paatal Look, which gives insight into the mind of a criminal and what makes the convict go through the rough path which is the crux of the web series.
Based on Tarun Tejpal’s novel The Story of My Assassins, Paatal Lok tells the story of a struggling police inspector (Jaideep Ahlawat) who follows an investigation into the attempted murder of an eminent journalist (Neeraj Kabi) by a group of four violent gangsters headed by Vishal “Hathoda” Tyagi (Abhishek Banerjee). The series introduces four accused suspected of the murder but as evidence starts disappearing and the police face increasingly more bureaucracy and obstacles the closer they get to the truth, the investigation becomes more complicated.
Directed by Avinash Arun (Killa) and Prosit Roy (Pari), Pataal Lok will take some time to build upon you but when it does there is no coming back. The best part of watching Pataal Lok web series is that you will be shown three different worlds which is very much existing in today’s scenario – Swarg Lok which shows the fake life of a popular TV journalist who is swindling between a loving wife and still handling extra-marital affair with his office assistant. Dharti Lok which focuses on the middle class and probably the most relatable one where an honest police officer is trying to make a career and yet struggling with his rebellious son and a nagging wife. We are finally introduced to the third world, Pataal Lok, which shows the coming-of-age story of the four antagonist who plan to assassinate a high-profile media person. The web-series flips between past and present scenes to show the making of criminals through diverse stories woven together with same outcome. While first few episodes will be easy-going to watch, it is the twist and turns in the later part where the series gathers the steam. The best scene is where Haathi Ram thrashes his son’s friend for hiding the gun.The scene will bring down the house with fantastic act by Jaideep Ahlawat.
Pataal Lok has few similarities with Abhay Deol starrer Manorama-Six Feet Under , of course it was expected as Navdeep Singh is the script consultant here. Like a suspended PWD engineer but a detective-wanna-be Abhay Deol takes on solving the mystery behind the disappearance of a 6 year old girl from NGO in Manorama, our protagonist, Haathi Ram Chaudhary, in Pataal Lok, even though suspended, becomes curious to solve the mystery behind the attempted assassination of an eminent journalist. There is a lot of twist and turns which needs to watched carefully and the director succeeds you keeping engaged right till the end. On the flip side, I feel the length of the web-series could have trimmed by few minutes while a better background score could have made Pataal Lok more engrossing. The highlight of the web-series is the admiring direction, beautiful screenplay, solid performances by the entire star cast will help to enjoy the web-series. Hats off to Jaideep Ahlawat who gives the best performance of his career. The actors goes deep into his character as he was playing a real-life cop with aplomb. Abhishek Banerjee will surprise you with deadly and daring looks as “Hathora” Tyagi. I wish I could see more of his scenes in the 9 episodes web series. Neeraj Kabi is stunning as the high-profile journalist. Ishwak Singh and Niharika Lyra Dutta were superb. Swastika Mukherjee and Gul Panag leaves a solid impression even though they have small roles to play.
Paatal Lok is a fantastic who-done-it crime thriller that will certainly keep you on the edge of your seat. Paatal Lok is streaming on Amazon Prime and is produced by Anushka Sharma.