It’s a good watch but unfortunately, not a great watch until the last half an hour. There are so many lost opportunities. Opportunities to make an impact, an impact that would shatter the audience, break their hearts, and make them cry; an impact that would last forever but it just didn’t happen. And I am so disappointed with it. What a great, impactful drama Criminal Justice: Behind Closed Doors could have been.
The story is hard-hitting. It’s a story that every woman can relate to. It had such a wide audience to leave a mark on. It could have easily started a healthy discussion and debate around domestic violence that almost every woman faces at least once in her lifetime but doesn’t even realise that she has just fallen prey to abuse: physical, sexual, or emotional.
So what is Criminal Justice: Behind Closed Doors all about? It’s a story of a wife who after murdering her husband confesses the crime. But there is an investigating officer who doubts that the lady might have been a victim of marital rape and hence she killed her husband, in defense. He then calls lawyer Madhav Mishra (Pankaj Tripathi) to fight this case as no other lawyer would agree to take this case up. Reason? The man who was stabbed was a reputed lawyer himself so the entire lawyer community boycotts his wife and denies to defend her. The case then slowly unfolds and the dirty secrets from behind the closed doors of a bedroom slowly come out in the open.
The last episode is gripping. You won’t pause the show for a second as you want to listen to the woman’s side as she finally speaks up in her defense. But till then, sadly, though you sympathize with the lady, you don’t feel the rush. You don’t feel the fear. You don’t feel the pain. The key reason for this being its speed. The story-telling is stretched to a point where the audience starts getting bored. If they would have edited out jail scenes or would have chopped off other sub-plots, the show could have been crisp and also surely become an edge-of-the-seat drama.
Speaking of the performances, all the actors have done justice to their roles. Pankaj Tripathi, as usual, is outstanding. He is an expert at subtlety. His performance is smooth, flawless, and yet effective. Another actor that I want to specially mention here is Nisha Dhar, the actress who played Sudha in the web series. I am afraid she would go unnoticed because she simply looked her character. When an actor plays such a small but significant part so convincingly, when the actor becomes the character, you forget its significance.
Nisha Dhar, if you are reading this, this is for you: What a bundle of talent you are! What a seamless, flawless, perfect performance! I wish you get more awesome opportunities in the future.
Kirti Kulhari and Jisshu Sengupta’s performances were perfectly balanced. I also loved Khushboo Atre’s performance, the girl who played Madhav Mishra’s wife. The character was undoubtedly well-crafted and well-thought but Khushboo’s performance took it to another level. Neither her character nor her performance was extraordinary; it was ordinary and that ordinariness was its beauty as that is exactly what was needed there.
To conclude, I would say that Criminal Justice: Behind Closed Doors is definitely a worth-watching show but yes, you have to be a little patient with it.
P.S: The show was about to hit the bull’s eye but it missed the target by an inch.
Streaming On: DisneyPlus Hotstar VIP