Quick and Quirky
75%Overall Score

A mini series shot on phone cameras in lockdown…this is truly a new normal. In director Deven Munjal’s lighthearted Zee5 original, Bhalla Calling Bhalla, members of the Bhalla family are stuck in various parts of the country during the lockdown.

A cute family drama

Mrs Lovely Bhalla (Lubna Salim) plays an adorable tech-savvy mother in Delhi who is expecting her kids and her husband home before her birthday. Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen as the kids, Sahil (Leenesh Matoo) and Liza (Gracy Goswami) would rather not return home, where they’d only get bored. Sahil is a struggling actor living in Mumbai and Liza is a student studying in Jaipur who intends to change the world. Rajesh Bhalla (Rajesh Kumar) who plays her husband is stuck in Chandigarh, where he’d gone on a business trip. The joint video calls are a window into the goings-on in each person’s life. Gogi aka Yogi (Gaurav Gera), Lovely’s brother, is a cool wisdom-imparting maamu who sends his sister a birthday gift only to find out later that the shopkeeper he bought the gift from may have tested positive for Coronavirus. Gogi also provides Mr Bhalla a piece of freaky advice that lands him in trouble.

..that provides much laughter therapy

The episodes are short at ten minutes and the conversations between characters are pretty entertaining. The fact that the scenes were shot on individual phone cameras during lockdown makes this a novel experience. It’s an accurate depiction of life in quarantine with a family that’s only slightly crazier than yours. The scenes of Mr Bhalla’s rationing alcohol, Sahil getting depressed and sitting in the car and Liza feeding pets are entirely relatable as they could be scenes from our lives.

WATCH OR NOT
The unique part about the show is that it’s been made at a time of social distancing. That, and the funny conversations, make Bhalla Calling Bhalla an amusing distraction. For a review of the remaining episodes, see here.

Director: Deven Munjal
Cast: Gaurav Gera, Gracy Goswami, Lubna Salim, Leenesh Matoo, Rajesh Kumar
Streaming on: Zee5