IWMBuzz.com reviews Maaya 3, Vikram Bhatt series that streams on JioCinema.

Review of Vikram Bhatt’s Maaya 3: A well-depicted tale that shows love can make one do strange things

How would you feel if you start falling for your boyfriend’s father? Well, this in a nutshell is the story of the third installment of the Vikram Bhatt-produced web series Maaya, which talks about forbidden relationships. The series streams on JioCinema.

At the very outset, will a plastic surgeon be called in to save the life of someone who has just attempted suicide? But here, well-known B-Town Botox guy, Dr. Akash (Mukul Dev) is heroine Sonica Sangha’s (Cheshta Bhagat) knight in shining armour. She has tried to kill herself once before as well.

Subsequently, Akash find out that Sonica is suffering from the Big C and is refusing to get operated, having no will to live (depression is a major issue in Bollywood). He decides to get her up and running.

As a quirk of fate, Sonica’s fashion photographer boyfriend Aarav (Mohit Malhotra) turns out to be Akash’s son. Sonica wanted to tell the latter the truth about her uterine cancer, but he gets insecure about her getting clicked by some other guy.

Akash’s better half Kamya (Deepshika Nagpal) is a devoted wife and mother, and the two appear in sync, but guess, one can fall out of love (full marks to the writer for the latter’s admission scene).

Akash lies to Kamya, air-dashing Sonica to Dubai to get her treated quietly. Certain complications develop during surgery and they are forced to buy blood, for which Akash pays from his and his better half’s joint credit card. Here Kamya should have gotten the first whiff that all is not well. But then, they did not develop that track. Should she have not raised a hornet’s nest about the alleged fraud transaction?

Seeing Akash doing so much for her, Sonica starts to develop feelings for him, which even Akash reciprocates. In a way, it was good that they did not show her really feel guilty about dumping Aarav, as she never really cared for him. You might call her bad, but then that’s life.

Just one thing, she should have then not called time on her thing with Aarav to save herself some blushes.

Akash, on the other hand, knowing what hell can break loose, tries to cut ties with Sonica, but soon gives way to his heart. They did not show him battling his baapta (fatherly feelings) much. But several “family” men do slip.

Interestingly, Akash’s married daughter Anjali (Sheetal Dhabolkar) walks out on her US-based husband after catching him making out with his secretary. Rajeev comes down to town to apologize, but she refuses to go back with him.

Akash’s best attempt to keep his liaison secret comes a cropper when his secretary finds out his truth and passes on the info to Rajeev, who in turn leaks it to the media. Here the director Krishna Bhatt shows how the media too cuts dirty deals.

Still, the news eventually comes out and a heart-broken Kamya decides to walk out on Akash, feeling that he was never loyal. Here she interestingly tells Anjali to give Rajeev a second chance for he really loves her.

I did not get one thing. How come Akash willingly gives his house and hard-earned money to his wife? Don’t most divorces get held up on alimony? Also, then where does he get the moolah to buy US tickets (climax scene)? This half-hearted attempt to whitewash his adultery does not cut much ice.

I will not say more. Why don’t you watch the 10-episode series to find out how the story finally pans out?

Mukul could have been better with his emotional portrayal. Too much of a cold demeanour in clincher scenes can be a turn off. Having said this, he has done a very good job no doubt, but we would have loved it more if he had been shown breaking down. Agreed, they did show him losing his top twice.

Cheshta is the hero of the show and she has done a good job, bringing out the inner frustrations of an actor. The best thing was her change in personality – from someone who was ready to die, to a gal now ready to do what it takes to be with her man.

Mohit Malhotra has given a good performance as Aarav.

One big difference between Maaya 3 and its earlier avatars was the lack of bold scenes. I guess the fear of looming censorship is forcing many makers to exercise self-censorship.

We also wanted to see Aarav’s reaction more. The fact that he just moved on makes him look a weaker character. Or is that how most guys behave in real life as well?

There is not much to write home about Simple Kaul as Sonica’s secretary Sara.

All in all, a good attempt to show relationships in a mature way. Vikram Bhatt and his writing team have done a great job. Director Krishna Bhatt again shows promise with her work behind the camera.

Forbidden relationships tend to get complicated with time. We wonder what will be the consequences on Akash’s reputation after her press conference? Sorry, love can’t be the solution to all!  

We at IWMBuzz.com credit Maaya 3 with 2.5 stars.

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