Stories about comedy

Intense and insane, ‘Blackmail’ seems to have all the ingredients to be a real winner

The moment the posters for Irrfan Khan’s upcoming dark comedy Blackmail were released, with the actor wearing a paper bag over his face while he stood bare chested in his boxers, I knew it then and there that we were in for a treat! Khan rarely misses that quality movie mark and the kind of movies he does are always a little different than what Bollywood usually has in stores for us. The trailer of the movie released recently, and as expected, it seems like one hell of a ride. The trailer, with a 150-second runtime, is hilarious and quite intense. Usually, Bollywood ...

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This Is Us: A refreshing break from the usual senseless bombast

For as long as I can remember, I have had an intense aversion for family dramas – a genre which happens to be all the rage in our part of the world. While I was never a big fan of the category, it is no coincidence that my dislike for it proportionately grew with the rapid proliferation of local entertainment channels. The more ‘saas-bahu’ garbage they churned out, the less tolerant I became of the genre itself. Until one fateful day, it all changed.    Well you see, like loads of other people, I have a habit of always having ...

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The Hitman’s Bodyguard would have been a clichéd action movie if it weren’t for Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L Jackson

Even when the script they have to work with isn’t quite exceptional, talented actors still have the ability to elevate the mediocre material they’re provided and turn it into an entertaining cinematic experience for the audience. That is exactly what Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L Jackson have done with The Hitman’s Bodyguard, an otherwise middling action comedy that benefits from the chemistry and charisma of its leads. The actors portray two bitter rivals who must set aside their differences and work together to evade countless armed baddies on a journey across Europe. Reynolds appears in the role of Michael Bryce, a ...

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Beatriz at Dinner: An impactful clash between race, social class and ideals

It’s a clash of personalities and perspectives as two very different people end up at the same gathering in Beatriz at dinner. The movie is from an odd but touching drama genre with an impressive cast and a terrific performance by its lead actress. The protagonist is Beatriz (Salma Hayek), a massage therapist and spiritual healer who works mainly with cancer patients at an alternative clinic. One of her private clients is the wealthy Kathy (Connie Britton), the mother of a Hodgkin’s survivor, Tara, who Beatriz helped during her cancer treatment and recovery.   After Beatriz is done with her massage session at Kathy’s posh residence, ...

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Jumanji returns after 22 years, but with a remote-controlled twist

If you were a kid growing up in the 90s, chances are you saw Jumanji and loved it. Following the story of a sinister board game whose gameplay affects real life, the film was one of the benchmark children films of the 90s and for many people, one of their first introductions to the late and great Robin Williams. Now some 22 years later, it makes a return in the form of a sequel but there’s a twist. Instead of a board game, this one is about a Jumanji videogame which when played, consequently sucks its players into its world and transforms them into the characters of ...

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Dear Twitterati, Pakistan thanks you for making 2016 bearable

Decades later… in classrooms… with high speed internet (if PTCL ever catches up), children will be studying the history of our beloved homeland, Pakistan. With pride, they will be taught how our country boasts strengths like having the most formidable army in the world (take that India! Hope you’re not thinking of another hopeless ‘surgical’ operation), having nukes (yes India, at least ours work), the quietest president in the history of the world and, of course, having the sassiest sense of humour on the face of this earth. Ours is a nation with a strappy sense of resilience that stands smiling in the face of relentless ...

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Lahore Se Aagey: Don’t miss this roller coaster ride

Subtle comedy has never been Pakistani cinema’s forte; there are only a handful of writers who have successfully managed to pull off the art of subtle slapstick. Last year’s release of Karachi Se Lahore received mixed response from the audience. Some couldn’t stop laughing and loved it, while some thought it was needlessly dragged with dry humour. Whatever the response, most thought it was one of a kind; a Pakistani rom-com featuring a road trip through Pakistan – definitely not something the local audience has ever seen before. Director Wajahat Rauf was content with the response he got and hence decided to make a sequel, ...

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Jeewan Hathi – A case study on how a movie should not be made

There are some actors that directors and writers depend on a bit too much, even more than they should. Everyone in Pakistan wants to be the next Anwar Maqsood and Moin Akhtar (late) combination. But it’s not as easy it sounds. I suppose Fasih Bari Khan thought he could build the same association with Hina Dilpazeer. The recently released telefilm Jeewan Hathi is hardly 65–70 minutes long and features Hina Dilpazeer, Samiya Mumtaz, Kiran Tabeer, Adnan Jaffar, Saife Hassan, Fawad Khan and Naseeruddin Shah. Let’s see what this elephant has to offer. Jeewan Hathi revolves around the lives of people involved in the television industry; an ageing TV hostess (Hina ...

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Housefull 3: Awful, painful, and anything but cheerful

How is it even possible that you go watch a movie with zero expectations, but yet walk out of it feeling utterly let down. And that my friends, is precisely the kind of feat the third instalment of the Housefull series managed to pull off. Promoted as a rib-tickling screwball comedy, the only reaction Housefull 3 got out of yours truly was that of head-scratching. It surely must be a record of some sorts making a 145 minutes long comedy where not a single joke lands. So in between all the failed attempts at humour, there is this laughably ridiculous plot ...

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Zoolander 2: Too many cooks spoil the broth!

Fashion icons, catwalks, style statements, and cameo appearances run wild in Zoolander 2, the sequel to Zoolander (2001). Ben Stiller reprises his role of Derek Zoolander, a silly male model while Owen Wilson returns as Hansel McDonald, another male model who was Derek’s arch nemesis in Zoolander but becomes his best friend in the sequel. Stiller has appeared in notable movies including There’s Something About Mary (1998) Mystery Men (1999), Meet the Parents (2000), Meet the Fockers (2004), Starsky & Hutch (2004), Night at the Museum (2006) and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013) giving stellar performances in each ...

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