Stories about documentary

Narcos will make an addict out of you

Narcos is an American crime thriller drama series. It is based on the real life character of the notorious and infamous Colombian cocaine baron, Pablo Escobar. The television drama series recounts and chronicles his ascension to power, influence and riches to eventually become the megalomaniac, cutthroat and despotic drug lord that he was. This makes the series relatively engrossing and thrilling at the same time. Pablo Escobar.Photo: IMDb The first season of the series is predominately set during the 70s and 80s. It is mainly written by Chris Brancato and directed by Brazilian filmmaker José Padilha, featuring Brazilian actor Wagner Moura. Wagner Moura is seen playing ...

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When he questioned them about the genocide, they gave him The Look of Silence

The Look of Silence is a documentary which depicts the remains of the Indonesian genocide that took place in 1965, brutally murdering thousands of communists or anyone who opposed the army regime. Adi Rukun, who plays the brother of a man who was murdered during the genocide, has the unique privilege to confront the masterminds behind the massacre and put his nightmares to rest once and for all. The Look of Silence is a spiritual sequel to Joshua Oppenheimer’s previous masterwork The Act of Killing (2013), which portrayed the massacre through the perpetrator’s perspective. Honestly, this film is clearly not ...

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When a rape victim is ‘Outlawed in Pakistan’

Outlawed in Pakistan won an Emmy this year for Pakistan and this is a triumph that must be celebrated on many levels. Pulitzer Centre grantees Habiba Nosheen and Hilke Schellmann spent five years in making this 45-minute-long short film, exposing the inherently flawed justice system of Pakistan. It’s another addition to the success spree of alternate filmmaking in Pakistan, two years after Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy won an Academy award for her documentary. It’s also an endeavour to bring forth the severe violation of women rights and how women, from extremely opposite social and economic backgrounds, work together to empower women all ...

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Pakistan’s Hidden Shame: Exposing child sexual abuse and Pakistan’s ‘see no evil’ attitude

Pakistan’s Hidden Shame, a documentary exploring the widespread sexual abuse of children in the streets of Peshawar, is something one wishes every Pakistani would take time to watch, while imploring his or her own eyes to un-see it. The practice of ‘bachabazi’ (child prostitution), as it’s known around the country, is something most of us are aware of. It is an ignominious fact of life in Pakistan that has blended seamlessly among all the other facts we don’t like to talk about. The statistics are hair-raising. Of the estimated one and a half million street children in Pakistan, 90% have suffered sexual abuse. And for every 10 ...

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Watching Carl Sagan’s documentary ‘Cosmos’ changed my life!

It was sudden. It was unexpected. I was in grade nine when my life took a dramatic turn. Like many of my peers at school, I was planning on pursuing electrical or computer engineering at NED University of Engineering and Technology. My father is an engineer and so is my eldest brother. The path seemed to have been laid out. But then, on a fateful night, Cosmos got aired on Pakistan Television (PTV) and by the time the first episode ended, I had decided to become an astronomer. In less than an hour, a science poet from Brooklyn had fundamentally altered the trajectory of my ...

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Red Ant Dream: A documentary on naxalism, Moaists and the Punjab revolution

A few years ago, I watched a documentary film. I watched it till the very end. Once finished, I played it again – for I searched for meaning; the meaning of ‘azaadi’ (freedom), which to me, before watching this documentary had an altogether different connotation. The film inspired me. It made me believe in the significance of the word azaadi. It turned my life towards a different dimension. For the first time, I understood that occupation is not only about tyranny, killings and oppression. Something more perilous was hidden beneath – capitalism and foreign investment, just to fulfil some neo-liberal aspirations. ...

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Postcards from Lahore to Cannes Film Festival

“Lahore. The second largest city in Pakistan; the fifth largest city in South Asia and the 26th largest city in the world but more than that though, this is the place of my parents’ birth and the place they now live in. I lived here only once, as a seven-year old, now at the age of 24, I’ve finally got another chance to visit the place of my origins, and recreate the early mementos of my childhood trip: my postcards from Lahore.” And so begins the British-Asian and London-based filmmaker and comedian Aatif Nawaz’s documentary-film, ‘Postcards from Lahore’, that has ...

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Whose face are we trying to save?

Bina Shah has raised some pertinent points in her op-ed for The Express Tribune. Refusing to accept the allegations levelled against Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, she implies that Rukhsana is being threatened by her family to claim financial compensation from the documentary film-maker. More significantly, Bina asserts that this reality has been obscured by the elite-bashing and a more cohesive approach is needed to understand this issue. Ironically, the op-ed has been criticised for propagating the same elitist narrative that it condemns. This reflects the inconvenient truth about our nation being constantly obsessed with defending the underdog rather than objectively examining the facts. While ...

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Documentaries about Pakistan: A step in the right direction?

Pakistan is a land full of stories. Its culture, ideas, politics and landscapes are so vast and intriguing that it invites artists for exploration all the time. Ever since 9/11, Pakistan has been the center of media attention ─ be it nationally or internationally. The so-called ‘war on terror’ has given rise to a lot of interest in the foreign film market, encouraging people from all over the world to analyse its complexities surrounding fundamentalism and liberalism. But one question, I feel, is extremely important for us to explore is ‘why Pakistan?’. So, in the hopes to settle my query, I invited my ...

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The Vice Guide to Karachi will not render my love for the city void

Recently, I came across a documentary – the Vice Guide to Karachi – a short film based on the heart of Pakistan. Shot during the recent Lyari operation, this five-part documentary shows one of the many sides to this big city. Describing Karachi as an ultra-violent metropolis of Pakistan, the documentary specifically revolves around the problems that have given the city the title of being the most violent. In 2011 more than three times as many people were killed in Karachi than the number of people killed in American drone strikes. This statistic stated early on sets the whole tone for the documentary. It serves to provide an ...

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