Khalid Rafi

Khalid Rafi

The author enjoys writing and is passionate about Pakistan Cricket. He tweets @TheKhalidRafi (twitter.com/TheKhalidRafi)

Can its ‘silly’ story help Aquaman swim its way to the top?

With the DC Extended Universe (DCEU) still looking to hit its stride the same way Marvel has, their latest film Aquaman provides them with a welcome opportunity to do so by going the traditional origin-story route, with a character that isn’t that well-known to most mainstream comicbook fans. Now, the story of Aquaman is fairly silly when compared to other DC heroes, which poses a bigger challenge to properly bring it to the screen, especially with DC’s history of making movies that are overly self-serious. But judging by the trailer, DC seems to have adopted a far lighter tone with this film, while keeping the seriousness ...

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What has Mickey Arthur done for Pakistan cricket?

The sight could not have been more vivid. Pakistan were reeling at 162-7 in their do-or-die Champions Trophy clash against Sri Lanka at Cardiff. The camera panned on Pakistan Head Coach Mickey Arthur, who was sitting on the balcony. Over the course of Pakistan’s run chase, he went from having a reasonably cheery smile on his face at 74-0, to gradually seeming worried, annoyed, disgusted, at times livid, and finally, sporting an expression of pure and utter disappointment on his face.   Overs later, when Pakistan had mounted an impressive comeback to win the game on the back of a ...

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Based on real-life story of Muslim immigrants, Ali’s Wedding hits too close to home

Based on the real-life experiences of its star and screenwriter Osamah Sami, Ali’s Wedding follows the story of its neurotic titular character Ali (Sami), an Iraqi immigrant living with his family in a Muslim community in Melbourne, Australia, where his father Mahdi (Don Hany) also happens to be a cleric. Ali’s life is burdened by many of the same expectations that people even in our society can relate to, particularly the young people: his parents want him to become a doctor. But after he fails the medical school entrance exam, he is caught in a web of lies regarding his grades. He ...

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The bittersweet reality of a meth addict: Can ‘Beautiful Boy’ win Timothée Chalamet an Oscar?

Based on the harrowing memoirs of David Sheff (Steve Carell) and his son Nic Sheff (Timothée Chalamet), Beautiful Boy chronicles the bittersweet real life story of a father trying to help his troubled son overcome an addiction to methamphetamine, something that threatens to bring ruin to both their lives. The official summary describes the film as, “A heartbreaking and inspiring experience of survival, relapse and recovery in a family coping with addiction over many years.” Judging by the trailer and the film’s fall release date, it’s not hard to see that Beautiful Boy is intended to be an Oscar contender. But the trailer also offers ...

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Escape Plan 2: Hades – the only escape you should be planning is one out of the theatre

When Escape Plan came out in 2013 nobody really expected it to be good. And it wasn’t. But it did enough with its premise to create a relatively fun prison break movie. And with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone starring opposite of each other, the film succeeded at being what it was; a dumb but enjoyable B movie that doubled as the long-awaited big-screen team-up of two of the biggest movie stars of the 80’s and 90’s. It was about cashing in on the nostalgia that these stars brought. And the studio duly cashed-in. But nothing about the film could have pointed ...

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Calling Hereditary a ‘terrifying’ film would be underselling it

Talking about the state of horror movies these days is like flogging a dead horse. It’s pointless and something that has shown very little prospect of changing even though films like The Babadook and The Witch have served as promising examples of filmmakers attempting to do something new and different with the genre. So therefore, you can imagine my surprise when something like Hereditary comes around, a film that well and truly earns every hyperbole attached to it. To call it a terrifying film would be to undersell it because it is so much more and for the horror genre itself, it is nothing short ...

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Creed II: A film truly worth getting excited for

On paper, Creed probably shouldn’t have worked. Released in 2015, the film that served as an effective spin-off of the Rocky series, focusing on the life of Apollo Creed’s son Adonis, had very little factors distinguishing it from 2006’s lukewarm and ultimately disappointing Rocky Balboa. However, with Director Ryan Coogler at the helm, actor Michael B Jordan taking the role of Adonis, and Sylvester Stallone returning to the role he was born to play, everything managed to come together perfectly. And the film itself was a rare masterpiece that added to the legacy of the series while also bringing something eminently new to ...

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‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ feels like two films in one, and neither fares well

The prequel movie formula is one that barely works. In hindsight, you can understand its purpose – which is fan service – but for anyone who isn’t a fan of a particular franchise, this can be an issue. Because let’s face it, making a movie with a predetermined beginning and end while having to fill in between the middle just isn’t the most effective way of telling a story, nor does it give a lot of room to try something fresh. The latest Star Wars prequel series has tried its best to avoid these mistakes, and with Rogue One they succeeded in creating something ...

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Move over, Marvel! Mission Impossible may be the most original, entertaining action movie franchise

It isn’t common for action franchises to actually gain momentum as they get older; more often than not, it is the other way around. However, the Mission Impossible franchise stands as a distinct exception to the rule. Five movies in, the franchise that actually began as a (then) modern-day adaptation of a corny 60’s spy show, has now morphed into quite possibly the most entertaining action movie franchise out there. Not only does it continue to defy audience expectations with its ambitious set pieces, but it also actually provides a welcome alternative for anyone who is tired of the excess of superhero ...

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‘Terminal’ fails to grab our attention, but will Margot Robbie save the day?

Hot on the heels of an Oscar nomination for her incredible performance as Tonya Harding in I, Tonya, actress Margot Robbie is slowly taking Hollywood by storm. Her stock rose considerably due to the immense commercial success of Suicide Squad in 2016 and her performance as Harley Quinn was one of the few things about the movie that was lauded by critics and fans alike. However, the mark of an actor or actress is often determined by the types of roles they play, compounded by their own penchant to experiment and do something that would otherwise be considered outside their comfort zone. So ...

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