The broken and tormented Kinzas and Tayyabas of Pakistan, waiting for a train that never comes

If you live in Pakistan, you must have frequently come across a very young child accompanying an elite family, looking like they don’t belong. What differentiates the child from the ‘elite’ family is the fact that while they dress modestly enough to not look poor and become a source of embarrassment for the family, they are also not dressed extravagantly, so there remains a marked difference highlighting who is the master and who is the servant.  This has become a trend in Pakistan, where you see children accompanying adult individuals and carrying either their bags or their babies for them. Apparently, this shows their ...

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When “holy men” become sinful predators

Growing up in South Asia, we are taught about our religion from a very young age. Be it Islam, Hinduism or Christianity, we are all instructed to do right by our religion by abstaining from evil and taking the path of righteousness, as intended for us by God. Children are made to understand the significance of religion, for it is through religion that parents teach kids about the difference between right and wrong, and good and evil. Of course, children are naïve. They genuinely believe that because their religion is pure, then surely the ones teaching it to them must be ...

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A faithful Stephen King adaptation, Pet Sematary is bringing scary back!

Stephen King adaptations never go out of style. However, the widespread success of 2017’s It has brought them even more into the limelight, with It: Chapter Two and Doctor Sleep already slated to release in late 2019 and early 2020 respectively. However, before both these films comes the adaptation of arguably one of the King’s scariest novels to date: Pet Sematary. The film follows the story of Dr Louis Creed (Jason Clarke), his wife Rachel (Amy Seimetz) and their two young children as they relocate to rural Maine. Upon arriving, Louis discovers a mysterious cemetery located deep in the woods near his family’s new home. However, when ...

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With an unrecognisable Bale as Dick Cheney and a gripping story, Vice is headed straight for the Oscars

You aren’t likely to recognise Christian Bale in the trailer for Vice, an upcoming biographical comedy drama about former US Vice President Dick Cheney. You’d even be forgiven for thinking that was Jeff Daniels or Chevy Chase in the titular role instead; it certainly looks more like either of them than it does the iconic Bale. The chameleonic actor is simply unrecognisable here. His extreme makeover, the latest in a string of incredible physical transformations, sees him take on the role of the controversial politician who served as George W Bush’s second-in-command for eight years. Vice charts Cheney’s political rise and invites ...

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Manikarnika: Only Bollywood’s real ‘Queen’ can play Jhansi ki Rani with such valour and brilliance!

Gone are the days when Bollywood was associated with movies that only portrayed the valour and gallantry of male protagonists. Filmmakers are now finally shifting their focus from male-oriented films to powerful women-centric movies. Successful films such as English Vinglish (2012), Queen (2014), Dangal (2016), Neerja (2016), Pink (2016), and Lipstick Under My Burkha (2016) are just a few names that kept filmgoers spellbound with their feminist storylines and audacious leading ladies. The Queen-famed Kangana Ranaut’s highly anticipated biographical film, Manikarnika – The Queen of Jhansi, is one more addition to these powerful women-centric flicks. These movies that revolve around ...

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Dark Phoenix: Is it time for the X-Men franchise to finally call it quits?

The X-Men franchise is perhaps one of the few and only movie franchises that has managed to stay fresh and relevant even after nearly 18 years since its first film hit cinema screens in 2000. However after Bryan Singer’s original trilogy culminated rather disappointingly with the much reviled X-Men 3: The Last Stand, the producers were under a lot of pressure to reinvent the franchise. They took the prequel route, brought on a new cast and with films like X-Men: First Class and X-Men: Days of Future Past, managed to firmly re-establish the franchise. However, the messy X-Men: Apocalypse proved that the ...

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Yes, Thugs of Hindostan is a copy of Pirates of the Caribbean but it’s still definitely worth watching

Aamir Khan, aka Mr Perfectionist, has always exceeded expectations, whether they are about the quality of films Bollywood is capable of producing or the amount of money a movie earns at the box office. Khan’s movies are always the “next big thing” in Bollywood and the audience waits for his new releases eagerly because they know they’re in for a spectacle. This time around, the next big thing is Khan’s Thugs of Hindostan, which is also said to have one of the most expensive outdoor settings in the history of Indian cinema. The trailer of this much-awaited movie was ...

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Mary Poppins Returns may not surpass the classic, but it certainly stays true to its spirit

Several years ago, in the movie Saving Mr Banks, Walt Disney Pictures told us in considerable detail how much writer PL Travers disapproved of her work being turned into films. Then, a few years later, Disney decided to go ahead and do just that anyway. Because why let a well-respected author rest in peace, when you can have her rolling in her grave instead? Everyone other than the spirit of Ms Travers, however, is likely to be enthusiastic about the upcoming Mary Poppins Returns, a bright and sunny sequel to the beloved 1964 classic. Well, beloved by everyone except for the lady ...

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The House with a Clock in its Walls promises a magical experience for the whole family

Family-friendly horror movies can be good if done right. Just look at The Nightmare Before Christmas, Monster House or Spiderwick Chronicles. However, films like The Haunted Mansion and Dark Shadows have also served as examples when this formula has failed. The film The House with a Clock in its Walls aims to get it right. Based on the 1973 book by John Bellairs, The House with a Clock in its Walls looks to offer a modern retelling of Bellair’s renowned children’s novel.  The premise follows a 10-year-old boy named Lewis (Owen Vaccaro) who goes to live with his uncle (Jack Black) in a ...

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Young at heart: Badhaai Ho hilariously tackles old-age pregnancy and intimacy

The trailer of the much awaited Ayushmann Khurrana and Sanya Malhotra starrer, Badhaai Ho, is finally out and surprisingly, it is not what you would have thought. Badhaai Ho, which is basically a Hindi expression to congratulate someone, is not an ordinary movie. I was taken aback by the audacity of the filmmakers who came up with such a novel concept and that too in the world of Bollywood. First off, I would like to establish that this is by far the most hilarious trailer I have watched this year. The trailer begins with Nakul’s (Khurrana) father (Gajraj Rao) hesitantly breaking ...

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