TW: Mentions of child sexual abuse and depiction of sexual relations between a minor and adult
Avinash Arun’s series starring Nimrat Kaur in the lead is out now on Disney+ Hotstar. School of Lies is about a 12-year-old missing child, Shakti, who becomes the catalyst for the doom that comes down on his boarding school RISE. The show also stars Aamir Bashir, Aryan Singh Ahlawat, Varin Roopani, and Vir Pachisia in prominent roles. There is an eeriness to the show, both visually as well as thematically. School of Lies touches upon some really triggering subjects like an inappropriate relationship between a minor and an adult as well as child sexual assault. The story is set up to provide maximum impact, but does the show deliver? Read our review of School of Lies to find out.
A glimpse into the very dark life of children
We often like to believe children are all sunshine and rainbows, but School of Lies is in stark contrast to that notion. The children of this series are struggling with loneliness, trauma, the pressure to fit in, and much darker situations. A school that should be a haven for students turns into a predator’s playground. A bunch of confused, struggling boys take centrestage amidst the search for the missing Shakti Salgaonkar (Vir Pachisia). Shakti’s case becomes the thread that unravels the secrets and horrors of RISE. There’s Nandita Mehra (Nimrat Kaur), an almost detached but well-meaning school counsellor whose only motive is to find Shakti. Samuel (Aamir Bashir) is the school’s housemaster, keeping some really dark secrets. Some of the students, Vikram Singh (Varin Roopani) and TK (Aryan Singh Ahlawat) are struggling with secrets of their own. Through this all, there is not one character whom you can trust.
Every character in School of Lies seems to have an ulterior motive that is just waiting to be discovered. It is hard to root for anyone in this show completely. You find yourself rooting for the kids, but more than that, you sympathise with them for what they are going through. Nandita clearly had a traumatic childhood, which is what motivates her actions, yet you find her almost unfeeling in certain instances. The most dichotomous character in the show is Samuel. You want to root for him and there are times when you feel he is just a man trying his best. But, soon, the reality makes him deplorable.
School of Lies is interesting for sure. And to a great extent, it lives up to the eerie, thriller genre. Yet, the show is missing a certain pizzazz.
Can you watch School of Lies with your family?: There are some triggering subjects addressed in the show, so it’s best to avoid watching this series with children or any other sensitive audience.
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