Stories about Pakistani films

As long as we keep producing films like Junoon-e-Ishq, Pakistani cinema will never get anywhere

It may seem hard to believe, but the trailer is actually one of the most important parts of a film. After all, it is through the trailer that the audience gauges the film and makes up its mind about whether or not to spend money watching it in the theatre. Thus, the power of a good trailer cannot be denied. Meanwhile, Junoon-e-Ishq is yet another Pakistani film that kept the audience away just through its trailer. Pakistani audiences had serious doubts over the quality of content, the performances as well as every single aspect of the filmmaking, and the ...

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The irony and hypocrisy of Shaan Shahid mansplaining ‘culture and respect’

For as long as Pakistanis can remember, Shaan Shahid has been a staple of Pakistani cinema. In the past, he was that guy in every Punjabi movie, and post-revival of Pakistani cinema, he became that guy who always ends up playing the patriot. While Shahid deserves respect as one of the most prominent actors of our film industry, his Twitter account has made it hard for us to respect much else about him. Some context: just like last year, Aurat March was held on International Women’s Day this year as well in many cities across Pakistan. And just like last year, ...

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Almost there, but not quite: Parwaaz Hai Junoon could not soar as high as it expected to

Haseeb Hassan’s Parwaaz Hai Junoon has been in the limelight for quite a while now. Ever since the trailer was released, the obvious patriotism of the film moved even the hardest of souls, but that was not all. The younger star cast, comprising of Hania Aamir, Ahad Raza Mir, Shafaat Ali and Shaz Khan, definitely made it more appealing. Add to that the social media sensation and forever Pyare Afzal in our hearts – Hamza Ali Abbasi – and you have a film the entire country could not wait to watch. The film, centred on the Pakistan Air Force, comes ...

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With a wafer-thin yet bipolar plot, Load Wedding cannot decide what it wants to be

With films like the Na Maloom Afraad series and Actor In Law under his belt, Nabeel Qureshi has not only entertained audiences but has also pulled off three of his ventures thus far. It won’t be wrong to say that Qureshi is a filmmaker for the masses, with Na Maloom Afraad being a genuine entertainer, whereas its sequel – loaded with toilet humour – also received appreciation, though not as much as the original. So what happens when a director known for mass entertainers tries something new and moves towards a different genre, with a film that centres on a ...

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Parwaaz Hai Junoon will ensure every Pakistani is an emotional, patriotic mess this Eidul Azha!

Parwaaz Hai Junoon has been making rounds and creating buzz since its first teaser was released to the public. From what is evident through the recently released trailer, the film looks like a fresh breeze of uniqueness for multiple reasons, and seems nothing like what we have been offered so far by the Pakistani film industry. Let’s see what makes this trailer fly high! The preview revolves around the lives of cadets in the Pakistan Air Force, focusing on both their personal lives as well as their strong patriotism towards their country. It banks on friendship, romance, nationalism and sacrifice. There seems to be a ...

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The only thing we want to be free of is the horror that is Azaadi

All around the world, particularly in India and Pakistan, people mostly watch films for entertainment. Films that are smartly written and well directed are always liked by audiences. On the other hand, filmmakers who try to stuff messages in any film without the entertainment quotient usually end up falling flat on their faces. In both Pakistan and India, Eid is always a great occasion to release a film that is backed with some good content and has any known celebrity in it. This Eid has been a busy affair for Pakistan, with multiple domestic releases dominating the conversation. One of ...

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Why didn’t Adnan Sarwar stick to Zenith Irfan’s original story for ‘Motorcycle Girl’?

“This isn’t a tale of derring-do, nor is it merely some kind of ‘cynical account’; it isn’t meant to be, at least. It’s a chunk of two lives running parallel for a while, with common aspirations and similar dreams.” When Ernesto “Che” Guevara wrote these words for his memoir The Motorcycle Diaries, one of the ‘two lives’ he was referring to may have belonged to Zenith Irfan, whose biopic Motorcycle Girl premiered last month. Irfan was 11-months-old when her father passed away, leaving behind a trail of unfulfilled dreams and a spray of handwritten letters. He had pined for an ...

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Up close and personal with Ghana Ali, Pakistan’s rising star who demands recognition

In a matter of only three years, Ghana Ali has established herself as one of Pakistan’s most promising leading ladies in films and on television. She is determined to portray diverse characters in the future, and is also working on two television projects at the moment. Ghana secured a role and got noticed in last year’s Rangreza; though not commercially successful, she persevered in the recent comedy, Maan Jao Na. Alongside these developments, the glamorous 24-year-old spoke about her forthcoming film. She hasn’t disclosed anything pertinent about it yet, but I will surely dig into it! Till then, let’s hear it ...

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Up close and personal with the graceful and effortless Aamina Sheikh and why ‘Cake’ is going to be one delicious treat!

Actress Aamina Sheikh is set to grace the big screen with her dramatic role as Zareen in the upcoming drama film ‘Cake’, which is set to release this March. Her command on acting and dialogue delivery is impeccable! The depth of characters she portrays effortlessly on screen is unconventional for Pakistani dramas and films. I chatted with Sheikh and talked about her upcoming film, how she juggles her personal and professional life, and her experience working on Miss Veet, Pakistan. How did you venture into acting? Throughout my academic career, I did theatre as an extracurricular. I was always involved in the ...

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Great performances and a powerful message, yet ‘Saawan’ will fail terribly at the box office

It is next to impossible to produce an experimental film in Pakistan, mainly because the distributors do not support the venture unless it comprises of a star-studded cast. Director Farhan Alam and Kalakar Films deserve appreciation for breaking barriers with their new film, Saawan. The film is written by Mashood Qadri and features Syed Karam Hussain, Imran Aslam, Najiba Faiz and Saleem Mairaj in pivotal roles. The film revolves around Saawan (Syed Karam Hussain), a physically challenged young boy who suffers from polio and lives in a valley in Balochistan. His father is frustrated, depressed and hopeless because of his son’s disability and does not treat ...

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