Rings: The utterly lifeless sequel no one asked for

Rings, the latest franchise horror sequel, has very little reason to actually exist. It arrives 15 years after 2002’s The Ring, and feels both forced and unnecessary in every facet. It also has very little connection to the first two films, made evident by the fact that none of the major stars of the first two films turned up for this one. Rings also conveniently ignores the events of 2005’s much maligned, The Ring Two.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NFB4eZSVgBE Now, one of the best and most original things about The Ring was how it used VHS tapes to create a genuinely scary premise. With ...

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Passengers: An absurd cliche of a film

Why do good actors choose bad projects? That is the biggest mystery that runs through Passengers, a clunky sci-fi vehicle that can neither justify nor make the most of the star power at its helm. The film is set aboard the Starship Avalon, an interstellar star-liner that is on a voyage from an overpopulated earth to the colony world of Homestead II. Its 5000 passengers and 258 crew members are in hibernation, and are set to spend 120 years in suspended animation before they are awakened upon reaching their new home. Chris Pratt in Passengers (2016).Photo: IMDb But a malfunction ...

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Resident Evil: The Final Chapter – Zombie killing at its best

The Resident Evil saga has come to an end. The sixth and final instalment of this blockbuster franchise, Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, brings back Milla Jovovich’s kick-ass zombie hunter, Alice, to where it all started – the infamous Racoon City. Ali Larter, who plays Claire Redfield, also returns in this final offering of the video game based movie franchise. Paul W S Anderson, the director of the first movie in the series as well as the last two, helms the director’s seat for this final outing. Many cast members who played popular characters from the videogame in the previous ...

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Is Shyamalan caught in a Split between his one hit wonder and the rest of his films?

Once upon a time, there was a young talented filmmaker who created a cinematic masterpiece despite merely being in his 20s. This particular piece of his can rightly claim to have one of the most shocking twist endings ever in the history of cinema. A couple of movies later, he was still churning out decent thrillers but the decline in his craft was starting to show. But now it has gotten to a point that whenever his name and filmmaking are mentioned in the same sentence, rather than gasping in unison with anticipation, the audience just simply walks away from ...

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Just how predictable is Raees?

Raees is manna for Shah Rukh Khan fans. We watched the film at the posh Metro Cinema but it felt like we were sitting at the erstwhile Novelty in Grant Road. Like Novelty, where movie goers were as unabashedly boisterous as patrons in upper-class cinemas are restrained, the audience at Metro hooted, shrieked and even danced when Khan appeared on the screen for the first time and each time he delivered a punch-line. In Raees, the camera is glued either to Khan’s face or his ripped body. For instance, a Muharram procession in the early minutes of the film is ...

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This food street inspired white chicken karhai will leave those desi taste buds drooling for more

As we know, Lahore is well known for its gastronomic treats, and is considered one of the culinary titans of Pakistan. I recently had the chance to visit the city and the famous food street. Upon entering the street, my mouth automatically started watering. The atmosphere was thick with steam, oil, and smoke from the countless karhais loaded with chicken and marinated kebabs on the charcoal grills. Watching the chef add green chillies to the wok was nothing short of torture. But it was one well worth waiting for. As soon as the dish was placed in front of me, I jumped at it. It was ...

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Five non-fiction books of 2016 you should definitely read!

The past year was encapsulated with great works of literature – especially when it came to non-fiction. The following five books delved deep into relevant issues in today’s world.  1. The Return by Hisham Matar It’s a searing and poignant book that deals with the abduction of Matar’s father, Jaballa Matar, in Libya.Photo: Goodreads. Hisham Matar’s memoir, The Return, a tear-soaked love letter to his father, towered over all other non-fiction books written last year. It’s a searing and poignant book that deals with the abduction of Matar’s father, Jaballa Matar, in Libya. Jaballa was a major opponent of the Qaddafi ...

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Enchanting magical realism exists in La La Land

The winner of seven Golden Globes and receiver of 11 Bafta nominations, La La Land is an aesthetically created, romantic yet sentimental melodrama with catchy music and orchestrated dances – all expressed through the indelible characters of Mia and Sebastian.   Director and screenwriter Damien Chazelle’s musical drama shines with affection, emotion, and ambition. Set in present-day Los Angeles, its fast-paced romantic plot revolves around friendship, love, dreams, and veracity. It reconnoitres the ecstasy and sorrow of pursuing one’s dreams and tests the vigour of the duo’s rapport. One thing that’s striking about the story is the way it deals ...

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Films like Thora Jee Le should be banned in Pakistan

It was just yesterday that I was thinking it was time for Pakistan’s film industry to use new faces – we’ve been seeing the same old actors in dramas, as well as on the silver screen and honestly, it’s time for a change. Thora Jee Le marks the debut of six fresh actors in pivotal roles. Rafay Rashidi handpicked the new faces, the music director, and the singers for his debut film. Thora Jee Le revolves around six friends who reunite in tragedy – when a common friend, Kaizad,  suffers from an overdose of drugs. They plan a road ...

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Was the need for Lebanese food in Karachi Paramount? Yes!

Recently, there has been a surge in restaurants promoting atypical food in Karachi. Middle Eastern food is one such example. This cuisine in particular is enjoyed and recognised by people all over the world.  If you’re interested in discovering the classic flavours of the Middle East, Lebanese in particular, then Paramount Fine Foods is your ultimate destination. The Mississauga, Ontario based franchise, has recently opened its first-ever branch in Karachi. The ambiance of the restaurant is traditional. Opened at 31-C, Khayaban-e-Shamsheer, the new restaurant with its simple yet fancy décor is a pleasant addition to Karachi’s fine dining clique. The ambiance of the restaurant is traditional; ...

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