O Rangreza is a story of colors… colors of love … colors of hate… colors of nuances in between… colors of life.
Written by Saji Gul, directed by Kashif Nisar and produced by Moomal Entertainment, O Rungreza is an exploration of love as a many splendored thing, as explained through the metaphor of color. Here, love is not just sweet and bright but also cruel and dark. Hence even as the serial opens in a dazzling riot of colors – the vivid palette of Khayyam’s house matched by the vibrancy of Sassi’s chulbulapan – here and there are to be found hues of a different kind – Mammo’s drab clothes and dull eyes, and Qasim’s eloquent silence for instance.
Khayyam is a well-reputed good-looking man who writes about love and fidelity and unfaithful beloveds. For a man who feels so deeply he is unconscionably harsh towards his wife. He sees nothing wrong with his behaviour, in fact feels justified in his cruelty, because in his eyes she’s an unfit match for a man like him. No matter how hard she may try, Mumtaz aka Mammo will never come close to being the woman Khayyam wants. And how could she? Her husband has made no secret of his desire. Sonya Jahan is his ideal. The beautiful temptress with millions of fans is Khayyam’s woman of choice.
In a fabulous bit of subversion, sassy Sassi is her father’s daughter. She idealizes him. Following his lead, she has no qualms in berating her mother, deeming her as unworthy of the lofty title of Mrs Khayyam. Where her father has Mammo, Sassi has Qasim, an orphan cousin she treats as a slave, whose only purpose in life is to do her bidding.
Saji Gul’s writing is deceptively simple. Ostensibly straightforward, there are layers upon layers waiting to be peeled back by discerning viewers, and his dialogues are worth a second listen. Kashif Nisar is a skilled director who not only understands the nuances of Saji’s writing but also appreciates the aesthetics, and together they make a fabulous team, Sannata an excellent example of their creative partership. And here it seems like the same magic is at work again.
With O Rungreza it was crucial that the visual element match up to the text, and if the first episode is anything to go by we are in for a great ride. The background music was sparingly and effectively used as was the OST. Editing was great and the DoP does a fab job with lighting and camerawork. Kudos to the art directors and producers and whoever else worked on the color palette, sets, wardrobe, styling of characters, it is a job well done. Even the posters match up to the sensibility of the story. There is attention to minute details and it shows. My only peeve has to be the set design, where the cardboard facades and painted on designs were easily discernible, and there is a marked tendency to over decorate the sets – please don’t.
All this would have fallen flat if not for the excellent team of actors that make up the ensemble cast. Considering the amount of work he is doing these days, I have no clue how Nauman Ijaz does it, but he is Khayyam – personality, mannerisms, ,language everything spot on. Sajal Aly is great, she is very natural and believable as the cunning Sassi and I am looking forward to seeing her character grow in coming episodes. Bilal Abbas Khan was good as the bechara ‘ashiq Qasim. Fareeha Jabeen very effective as the maid who is the keeper of secrets of this household. And last but definitely not the least – my highest praise for Irsa Ghazal. I thought she was fabulous in Ullu Baraye Farokht Nahin but I suspect her Mammo’s going to be in a class all her own. That last scene – wah wah! Bas wah!!
Yes, I loved the first episode! What about you guys?
Written by SZ~