Sunflower 2 moves in every direction, searching for light!

Sunil Grover, Girish Kulkarni and Ranvir Shorey in Sunflower 2. Photo: Trailer Video Grab

Maybe the title is perfect, if only to illuminate the characteristic of this show: it moves in whichever direction it may get some light, and murder, humor, dysfunctional relationships, societal hypocrisies and characters who are eccentric to the point of being weird all come in.

Sunflower, season 1, almost touched rock bottom as a whodunit that also offered ‘humor’, but in view of the fact that it was a (garbled) murder mystery with multiple suspects, my weakness for the genre compelled me to endure…Oops! I mean… watch its second season, as the first season never revealed the culprit. After all, many seemingly mediocre crime stories (on paper or on screens of assorted sizes from television to Cinemascope) get a turnaround with their denouement, making things worthwhile even after some scatterbrained writing.

But Sunflower 2 dashed all my hopes. In case you came in late, the name refers to a Mumbai housing society, whose secretary and committee members are as eccentric as they are eclectic. The secretary, Iyer (Ashish Vidyarthi) is a pain in all the wrong places as a holier-than-thou martinet who can become a whining puppy when he is confronted with his shenanigans of the shadiest variety.

There is a prime suspect, an eccentric man who makes weird faces and wears weirder apparel, named Sonu (Sunil Grover) and he falls in love with the newest resident, a hot and ever-smiling bar dancer named Rosie (Adah Sharma). Rosie has been bequeathed the flat in which Kapoor (Ashwin Shukla) has been murdered in Season 1 by the victim himself in his will.

This lecherous man also has a separated wife, Naina (Shonali Nagrani) and a techno-gadget under his flat’s floorboards that houses cash that he has stoked up! Then there is the dysfunctional couple, the Ahujas (Mukul Chadda and Radha Bhat), a nosy but shrewd maidservant (Annapoorna Soni), two cops (Ranvir Shorey and Girish Kulkarni) who have no other case or routine stuff to handle even in a city like Mumbai, for they are always nosing around the various suspects, the society and the bar that Kapoor frequented and discussing the case ad infinitum.

Last but not the least, there is the office girl with the hots for Sonu and interminable irrelevant-to-the-plot diversions and intolerably silly happenings that cloud the whodunit-comedy (well, that’s what they have tried to make!). But all this only increases the length of the story to ennui point. The eight long episodes total up to about five hours, and the solution to the murder comes in five minutes, leaving gaping holes, unanswered questions and characters whose graphs have no conclusion!

The cast, however, does quite well, with special distinction for Annapurna Soni as the maid, Adah Sharma as the cheerfully extroverted Rosie, Mukul Chadda and Radha Bhat as the Ahujas, and Ranvir Shorey and Girish Kulkarni as the cops, the former poker-faced and taciturn and the latter aggressive but a shade dense. Salonie Patel as Aanchal also scores.

But Sunil Grover as Sonu is good only sporadically, and the lines and scenes he has been given are quite trite and overdone. As is the direction (Navin Gujral) and the writing.

Overall, this is a perfect example of how not to conceive, write and execute my all-time favorite genre—a whodunit. And for a mystery lover like me, that’s almost a crime in itself!


ZEE5 presents Reliance Entertainment’s Sunflower 2  Created and written by: Vikas Bahl  Produced by: Reliance Entertainment   Directed by: Navin Gujral  Written by: Chaitally Parmar & Vikas Bahl Starring: Sunil Grover, Adah Sharma, Ranvir Shorey, Girish Kulkarni, Mukul Chadda, Radha Bhatt, Ashish Vidyarthi, Ashwin Kaushal, Ria Nalavade, Shonali Nagrani, Sonal Jha, Salonie Patel, Annapurna Soni & others




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