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Escaype Live Review

By NAMRATA THAKKER
May 23, 2022 12:39 IST
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Promising plot falters in execution, observes Namrata Thakker.

Escaype Live revolves around characters consumed by the Escaype Live social media app where individuals can show off their skills and become rich. The contest's bait -- Rs 3 crores as prize money -- ensures the contestants will go to any extent to win.

A girl from Rajasthan, played by Aadyaa Sharma, is one of them and her uncle crosses all limits to fulfil her dream and his greed.

Then, we have a prankster named Darkie (Sumedh Mudgalkar) who is crazy on a different level.

Joining them is a transwoman from Uttar Pradesh who finds the app liberating. There's also a desi Spiderman from Mumbai's slums and a young woman from the north east -- waitress during the day; virtual seductress at night.

How they cross each other's paths because of the competition and how the so-called gratifying world of social media ends harming their lives forms the crux of the story.

Siddharth stars as a middle-class, conservative, software engineer who works as a moderator at Escaype Live. His morals are offended by the app and he decides to bring it down.

Surprisingly, the company does not fire him despite his suspicious behaviour.

Another aspect about his character that's bizarre is that he empathises with Hina (Plabita Borthakur), the waitress/seductress, but fails to understand his sister who likes a guy from a different community.

Siddharth gives a restrained and earnest performance, but his character is so poorly written that it doesn't make a impact.

 

Escaype Live offers an interesting concept with some fine actors headlining the cast.

The concept of people being hooked onto an interactive app is relatable and relevant and the film cautions us about its consequences, both good and bad (though the focus is clearly on the latter).

The story has its fair share of loopholes and the characters falter at regular intervals.

We don't know why Darkie is so unpredictable, so it is difficult to empathise or even believe in his character.

In fact, it's hard to understand the backstory of most of the characters.

Waluscha D'Souza and Jaaved Jaaferi run the Escaype Live app and their characters are shown as brutal, devoid of emotion. But their characters seem clueless when things start going downhill.

Aadyaa Sharma and Sumedh Mudgalkar stand out in the acting department. Aadyaa is a delight who makes you feel all sorts of emotions. You end up not liking Sumedh's character, which says a lot about him as an actor.

Plabita plays her part well, but the scenes where she is shown as a damsel in distress don't work because she has such a strong personality.

Siddharth's role could have been meatier; he has his moments, but they are few.

Escaype Live is a good watch because of its storyline, mystery elements and some fine performances, but its makers have missed an opportunity to offer something extraordinary and effective.

Escaype Live streams on Hotstar+ Disney.

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NAMRATA THAKKER / Rediff.com