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HindustanTimes Mon,22 Sep 2014

Tear jerker V/s preach soap

Rachana Dubey, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, April 14, 2011
First Published: 16:00 IST(14/4/2011) | Last Updated: 16:03 IST(14/4/2011)

Show: Choti Si Zindagi
Station: Zee TV
Time: 7 pm, weekdays
Cast: Richa Mukherji and Shruti Bhisht

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The ‘little’ actors in this show can really steal your heart with their performances, especially the adorable Shruti who plays the younger sister, six-year-old Ira. Richa, who plays Isha, emulates the character of a motherly elder sister effectively.

The story depicts the life of a father (Pavan Malhotra), forced by his dilapidating financial condition to disown his daughters, leaving them on the doorstep of an orphanage. When you see that happen, you want to curse the man, which makes his portrayal of the character strong.

Once in the orphanage, the story moves into another direction, with a host of knee-high characters like Thakur and Cutting. The kids pick petty fights. Of course, there are two villains: the man and woman who run the place. And there’s a good-natured cook called Calendar (name straight out of Anil Kapoor’s Mr India). The casting and direction should be applauded.

On the flipside, the story, although narrated well, generously borrows from films like Mr India and Brahmachari. The recall is so strong that at times it overshadows the show’s other aspects like the locations and the kids’ performances.

What we like
* The kids

We don’t like
* Too many Bollywood inspirations

Rating: ***

Show: Navya
Station: Star Plus
Time: 10 pm, weekdays
Cast: Shaheer Shaikh and Soumya Seth

This one is about  ideological differences between two generations. Navya, played by Soumya Seth, is a kind of a shy and studious girl who doesn’t even venture out at night to party. Eventually, her life takes a 180-degree turn. She falls in love with a guy, played by Shaheer Shaikh. The struggle is now to stick to the family’s sanskaars while matching steps with the fast-changing world.

Full marks to the storyline because on an average, there are at least four to five urban homes where such problems exist. Everyone is in search of a middle path. It has been handled well without getting melodramatic or loud.

The performances are fine, though the lead pair could do better. At the moment, their chemistry leaves a bit to be desired. The actors have been chosen carefully.

The time slot for a show like this could have been better, keeping a younger audience in mind. At times, the show also gets a bit preachy and in turn, boring. This needs to be taken care of, for the show can become a hit with young and old viewers alike.

What we like
* The concept

We don’t like
* Show gets into preach mode.

Rating: ***1/2

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