Queen is a web series that has become the talking point as Gautam Menen has directed this biopic on the life of Jayalalitha along with Prasath Murugesan. We bring you a detailed review of the complete series here.
Shakti Seshadri(Ramya Krishna), our protagonist is a headstrong girl right from her school days and has her eye on the Best Outgoing Student award, so that she can get admission to Queen Victoria college. She even tops the state in her finals. That’s the moment that Shakti’s life is turned upside down as her mother gives her an ultimatum that Shakti needs to work in films to be able to support the family. The rest of the story deals with how Shakti’s mother and GMR, a film star, were the two instrumental and domineering people in her life and how Shakti dealt with it all, and how she became a strong and independent woman and conquered the world.
The driving factor for this web-series remains to be Ramya Krishnan, who, with all of her experience and understanding of the craft is beyond spectacular oozing the powerful persona and the lost soul at the same time. However, we only get to see her in glimpses, while she’s narrating the story, until episode 9, when the scene shifts from Shakti’s film career to Shakti’s political career.
Anika plays the role of young Shakti Seshadri, until the age of 16 and she is very good. Continuing her work, we see Anjana Jayaprakash essay the role of Shakti from age 17 to when we see Ramya Krishnan take over at age 36. Anjana Jayaprakash indeed gets the meatiest part, having to navigate Shakti’s life by showing her key emotional ups and downs, her relationship with actor GMR and how it influenced her life.
Sonia Aggarwal plays the younger version of Shakti’s mother, Renganayaki, and right from the get-go, it is her performance through which the audience understands why the relationship between Shakti and her mother is so turbulent. Sonia adds layers to her performance that deepens the impact. Veteran actress Tulasi plays Renganayaki and she was okay.
Indrajith Sukumaran plays the role of GMR, the highly influential and demi-God persona of Tamil films and politics during Shakti’s time. He brings to life the arrogance and the possessiveness that consume GMR so perfectly that one wonders if he is indeed like that off-screen. Without him, perhaps the scenes with GMR that play key roles in Shakti’s life wouldn’t have been so hard-hitting.
This web-series is based on the book Queen by Anita Sivakumaran. The series is committed to showing the hardships that Jayalalitha goes through in her life, and how all of it has made her what she is in the present day. It also emphasizes on how her past haunts her but still manages to be the driving force of what she’s achieved. Most importantly, it shows the power of Jayalalitha’s will, and how it was the only thing that kept her going when nothing else did.
The director of the web-series, Gautam Menon makes an appearance in a few episodes as director Sridhar and he is perfect in his role. The web-series is written by Reshma Ghatala and directed by Gautam Menon and Prasath Murugesan. The three succeed in depicting a larger than life story on screen and making the audience connect with every bit of it.
The background music is exceptional, with the theme music standing out, it adds the necessary emotions and additional layers that are required for the story. The sets and eras of the story have been perfectly portrayed with apt sets, never missing a beat. The cinematography and other technical aspects are commendable too.
Plus Points :
Key star cast performances
Minus Points :
On the whole, the latest web series, Queen is a must-watch if you’re an ardent fan of Jayalalithaa or even if you’re a political drama addict. The web series divulges into the never before seen facets of Jayalalitha and Ramya Krishna does extremely well as Jaya. Though slow at times, once you sit through the initial episodes, this web series gets quite interesting and makes up for an interesting watch.
Rating : 3/5